Art at the Heart National Conference - Regional Arts Australia


Alice Springs

October 2-3, 2008

Opening Ceremony

On the banks of the Todd River

Creative consultancy commissioned by the Northern Territory Government for the Regional Arts Australia Conference. Tracks worked as Creative Consultant with Alice Springs Artists to vision and create the Opening Ceremony.

Many of the country’s artists, arts workers and arts volunteers converged on Alice Springs as part of the largest Regional Arts Australia conference in history, and the largest conference ever to be held in Alice Springs – Art at the Heart.

The moving opening ceremony saw the 1000 delegates having a truly Territorian experience: Sitting under white ghost gums around 42 camp fires on the banks of the dry riverbed of the Todd River, while local Alice Springs hosts served up a traditional cup of billy-tea with local stories as the sun set behind the dramatic MacDonnell Ranges.

Creative Personnel

Artistic Vision: Kieren Sanderson
Artistic Director: Dani Powell
Associate Artistic Director: Alex Kelly
Creative Consultant: Tim Newth
Production Manager: Suzi Cordell
Sound Design: Matthew Cunliffe
Stage Manager: Jennah Rose


Milpirri - A Cross Cultural Collaboration - 20 Years In The Making
Presented by Steve Jampijinpa Patrick, Tim Newth and David McMicken. click to read

Tracks is shaping the future of Australian dance through projects like Milpirri. A proudly local company Tracks gives voice to Northern Territory culture. Milpirri has grown from a 20-year working relationship with the Aboriginal Community of Lajamanu.
I have been invited to share with you about a presentation called ‘Milpirri’. This story is a Jukurrpa, a Dreamtime story, about a certain rain cloud. In the story smoke from clearing fires rises and mixes with small clouds. This causes huge rain clouds that give out lightning and thunder and cause violent rains to sweep the desert.  Out of the violent meeting of rising hot air and falling cold air, and the following display, comes life-giving rain, transforming the sun-baked desert into a place of lush and abundant life. This story is a metaphor about the meeting of Warlpiri and mainstream cultures and people groups.  In the past we had our violent meeting, and our cultures were all mixed up, but there is hope for a life-giving future for us all.” Steve Jampijinpa Patrick

Tracks 2008

Artistic Directors: David McMicken and Tim Newth
General Manager: Fiona Carter
Dance Animateur: Julia Quinn
Administrative Assistant: Ciella Williams, Gail Evans
Bookkeeper: Julie Ann Stark
Development Consultant: Suzanne Fermanis

Committee Members: (Chair) Jill MacAndrew, (Vice-Chair) David Taylor, (Treasurer) Glenn Bernardin, (Secretary/Public Officer) Traci Keys, (Ordinary Committee Members) Ken Conway, Nick Papandonakis, Donna Quong, (Ex-Officio Members) David McMicken and Tim Newth

Public Fund Trustees: Rev. Steve Orme, Dr Anita Toth, Paul Wan


Explore Further

Presentations and Writings


"I think what it's doing for Alice is it's really profiling local artists, local culture and giving people a real experience of the life here."   President of Regional Arts Australia, Suzie Haslehurst. on ABC News

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