This Reconciliation Week, the Koorie Heritage Trust and Fed Square invite you to come together and celebrate Mabo Day with the Torres Strait Island and Aboriginal communities of Victoria, to commemorate the anniversary of the Mabo Decision.
Join us for a family friendly afternoon in Deakin Edge at Fed Square, hosted by Lisa Maza, with a performance by the acclaimed Torres Strait Island dance troupe, Gerib Sik and live performances from Luke Captain and Monica Weightman and Black Sistaz.
Mabo v Queensland (No. 2) (commonly known as the Mabo Decision) was a landmark decision in the High Court of Australia where native title was recognised in Australia for the first time since colonisation. During this court decision Eddie Koiki Mabo sat alongside a group of men from the Torres Strait Islands challenging the notion of ‘terra nullius’. On June 3 1992 it was ruled that the Murray Islands were not ’land belonging to no one’ and that the Meriam people of the Murray Islands were entitled to the possession, occupation, use and end enjoyment of (most) of the Murray Islands.
GERIB SIK TORRES STRAIT ISLANDERS DANCE TROUPE
Gerib Sik Torres Strait Islanders Corporation was incorporated in the year 2000 under the Aboriginals Councils and Associations Act 1976. They were established to promote and develop Torres Strait Islander culture through song and dance, particularly from Mer (Murray Island) and including other areas of the Torres Strait.
Gerib Sik is the Meriam Mir word for Cardwell Lily, a white lily that flowers prolifically once a year on Mer, Dowar and Waier. The legend of Gerib Sik also belongs to the people and Island of Mer.
Noel Zaro OAM and wife, Kaylynn Zaro OAM spearhead Gerib Sik Torres Strait Islanders Corporation as principal dancers and teachers of the group.
They were both awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) on 7 May 2010 for their “service to the promotion and teaching of Torres Strait Islander Culture, particularly through Gerib Sik dance group.”
Gerib Sik is made up of dedicated community people who are interested in promoting Torres Strait Islander culture and who come to learn more about cultural protocols. The group continues to grow with the constant advice from Murray Island Elders.
Since its inception, Gerib Sik has performed locally, interstate and internationally.
The Black Sistaz
Born into a movement – The Black Sistaz – Lea, Rosa & Petra Rumwaropen, three West Papuan singers with a powerful message, standing strong for a FREE WEST PAPUA! Upful Island Reggae and Soul meets traditional sounds, language and sweet harmony. Arriving as one of the first West Papuan refugee families, The now Australian based group musically communicates the journey of living a life in exile. Influenced by The Legendary West Papuan band – The Black Brothers -whom their late Father was a lead singer and guitarist, this is the very core of who The Black Sistaz are today. A celebration of Identity, with a strong legacy to continue, their music comes a message, and with their message comes a movement.
The Black Sistaz, One Rebel Creative 2018
Lisa is a Meriam, Yidindji, and Dutch singer and actor that has been performing for over 15 years, while also developing her skills as a writer, director and producer.
Some of her performances include Things That Fall Over (FCAC), The Sapphires (Company B), Cooee Cabaret (NFSA). Lisa sings solo gigs accompanied by a pianist or guitarist. She sings with Rachael in the Maza Sisters and in mid 2012, she joined the newly formed SKIN Choir who continue to perform today. Lisa has many other interests besides performing. She co-directed her first documentary Living in Two Worlds which premiered at St Kilda Film Festival in 2009
In recent years she has been developing her skills as a writer. In 2009 she successfully co-wrote and performed with her sister in their autobiographically inspired show Sisters of Gelam (Ilbijerri Theatre/Malthouse), which was nominated for a Deadly Award in 2010. Lisa has been MC for many events including the Koorie Heritage Trust’s 2017 Mabo Day Celebration.