Dancing: Creating Music Stories


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The Creating Music Stories modules were developed by Sandra Kirkwood for use with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and other Australian children. The purpose is to support children to be able to participate in musicking and creating their own song, dance and stories that are relevant to their families and places in which they live, work and play. Further music modules are available on the Tracking the Milky Way website (http://trackingthemilkyway.com/) and Music Health Australia (www.musichealth.com.au). Gunawirra Services supported the development of this presentation.

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Dancing: Creating Music Stories

  2. 2. DANCING – CREATING MUSIC STORIES Photo from Mosman Festival 2011, courtesy of Mosman Council.
  3. 3. SHAKE A LEG DANCERSShake-a-leg dancers,Here‟s how they stomp.Shake-a-leg dancers,Sha-sha-bop… (Use your own picture or video here of your family dancing)
  4. 4. BODY PERCUSSION Konrad is performing body percussion You Tube with Body Kongo See kids doing Slap Happy body percussion on You TubeBody Percussion Kids are very cool!See them on You Tube (You can add photographs/videos here of your class doing hand clapping or body percussion activities).
  5. 5. VIRTUAL DANCE GAMES Here‟s an Aboriginal dance game for kids on the computer with Muqeem (You Tube)
  6. 6. 2:03 Traditional Aboriginal or Torres Strait1:30 Islanders dancing Attend festivals or watch Traditional Indigenous dancers on video, or You Tube (click on these photographs to view You Tube performances).
  7. 7. TRADITIONAL INDIGENOUS DANCING People might dance  (Include your own pictures or videos that are relevant to your language about hunting with family group and cultural traditions)  Words from Sydney Aboriginal Move like animals and language groups are found on web at birds http://www.lesbursill.com/site/aboriginal words.htm Dress in special clothes Usually wear body paint  Gaxabarra means „dance‟ in the language of the Dharawal people Sing in Traditional of New South Wales, Australia. language and perform  See if you can learn ceremonies with shake-a-leg and foot community Sometimes dance about stomping. Watch places and use leaves or how adults dance sticks found in the area. and see if you can copy.
  8. 8. Here‟s some modern dancing “I been every where man” (remix by Blacky) on You Tube What kind of dance is this? How does your family dance? Show us how you dance? What kind of music do you like to dance to?
  9. 9. CONCERT PERFORMANCE Some Aboriginal people perform in stage shows. Here‟s the Chooky dancers performing at the Sydney Opera House in a show called Wrong Skin. You Tube. The Chooky Dancers are Yolgnu men from North-East Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. Ngurrumilmarrmiriyu (Wrong Skin) is their first full-length stage show. It was written and directed by Nigel Jamieson.
  10. 10. Hip Hop dancing Some people enjoy Hip Hop Dances Indigenous Hip Hop Projects are on You Tube Do you know anyone who dances? What do they wear? How do they dance?
  11. 11. Do you dance at the footy? Nunukul Yuggera Aboriginal Dance Troupe perform a War Dance for the All Stars NRL football game in 2011. You Tube
  12. 12. Can you make up a dancewith you class group?Try clapping a rhythm to the syllables in your name.Then make a dance move to that rhythmTake turns as you go around the group.
  13. 13. Now it‟s time to ask your teachers or Elders if they know any dances?Ask your Mum, Dad, Aunties and Uncles if they can show ortell you about some dance moves. Look in library forCDs, DVDs, videos and stories about dancing.
  14. 14. WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO DANCE? In traditional Indigenous culture, everyone joined in the dancing. It does not matter how good you are. “No shame, be game!”Our families and teachers show us how tomove when we are dancing around at home, atpre-school and at festivals. We can even makeup our own dance moves. If we watch and practise dancing we can have a lot of fun joining in dances. Moving around helps us to keep fit and healthy.
  15. 15. TEACHING OUTCOMES This presentation opens up a discussion with children about different kinds of dancing for individuals and Indigenous communities. It encourages children to be physically active and join in imitating dances with others. Children may even start to invent their own dance moves with a little help. Dancing is a fun activity and people of any age can participate. Traditionally, Indigenous people used song and dance to tell stories about hunting, gathering and other daily events. There were corroboree celebrations where everyone joined in the singing, dancing and music making. This helped to preserve Indigenous cultural knowledge by passing on traditions and oral history from one generation to another. Dancing can be very useful for encouraging children to be physically active and to have confidence in moving about. This module encourages children to be proud and strong in their bodies. The focus of attention is on watching, listening and learning how to dance from family, teachers and watching performances at festivals, or online on the computer. We encourage child care centres to develop a resource library of audio-visual and web links that may be useful in helping children explore performing arts. As far as possible use examples from the real world and record examples with consent of all participants, that are relevant to the people, place and cultural background of the students and their families. Sandra Kirkwood, Music Health Australia www.musichealth.com.au B.Occ.Thy, B.Music, M.Phil 26 August, 2012