A spectacle of fire, music, dance and performance opened this year's Ten Days on the Island in Tasmania.

25 August 2021

'mapali—Dawn Gathering' is just one of the many cultural activities we have supported through our Festivals Australia program.

The word mapali means 'gathering' and 'many' in palawa kani, an Aboriginal language of lutruwita/Tasmania.

Created by Aboriginal artist David mangenner Gough, 'mapali—Dawn Gathering' was an important cultural celebration that gave voice to Tasmania's First Nations artists.

It told the story of tara (kangaroo) and introduced more than 1,000 visitors to significant Creation characters such as palawa, moinee and drumadeennee.

David collaborated with First Nations leaders and cultural custodians to develop the project, which also built knowledge and skills within the community. He worked with school children, performers and collaborators from diverse cultural backgrounds.

It exemplified a key aim of Festivals Australia by forging partnerships and collaboration between Ten Days on the Island organisers, participants and Tasmanian Aboriginal artists and Elders.

Festivals Australia provides people living in regional or remote Australia with the opportunity to participate in and attend an arts experience at a festival, or a one-off community celebration like 'mapali—Dawn Gathering'.

There is an additional $2.4 llion available for projects planned for next year through the Festivals Australia program as part of the Regional Arts Tourism package.

Visit the Festivals Australia webpage for further details.