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An intercultural celebration of music and dance across the Kimberley

Sonus3 musicians playing outside in the rocky Kununurra landscape
Pictured L-R: Tristen Parr, Stephen Pigram, Tos Mahoney, Esfandiar Shahmir. Photo by Sarah Duguid

In what’s become an “annual Kimberley highlight”, Tura is embarking on the 2021 Sonus3 Tour from 9 – 23 September bringing diverse and vibrant groups of artists together in celebration of culture and place. The evolving Sonus line-ups and collaborations, which feature songs of outback Australia and new commissioned music on each tour, pivots in a captivating new direction for Sonus3 with internationally renowned dance company Marrugeku joining the Tura Touring Program for the first time. Sonus3 will see Kimberley singer-songwriter Stephen Pigram, Iranian percussionist Esfandiar Shahmir, cellist Tristen Parr, and flautist Tos Mahoney collaborate with Marrugeku co-Artistic Director Dalisa Pigram, associate dancer Tara Gower and guest artists, performing concerts in Kununurra, Warmun, Halls Creek, Fitzroy Crossing, Broome, Kooljaman, One Arm Point, Djarindjin/Lombadina and Beagle Bay.

Tura and Marrugeku artists have been creatively exploring cross-cultural connections over the past two years and this is the first public showing of their music and dance collaboration. In addition to the concerts in each community, Sonus3 will host workshops in schools, engaging primary and secondary music students with content from the tour.

Stephen Pigram has been working with Tura since 2006. Stephen has been described as the ‘king of Kimberley song’ for his over 35 years of composing and performing both solo and as part of the Pigram Brothers. A Yawuru singer/songwriter, Stephen has been paving the way for the ‘saltwater country’ genre, a distinct Broome sound that captures the multiculturalism of the area.

Stephen will be joined by Iranian instrumentalist Esfandiar Shahmir who plays the Persian daf (frame drum) and other percussion interlacing his ancient and cross-disciplinary sounds with songs of country, along with cellist Tristen Parr and flautist Tos Mahoney.

Dalisa Pigram is a Yawuru/Bardi woman and dancer born and raised in Broome. She has worked with Marrugeku since their first production Mimi, has been Co-Artistic Director since 2008 and is a co-devising performer on all Marrugeku’s productions, touring extensively overseas and throughout Australia.

Tara Gower is a proud Yawuru woman from Broome who also has Spanish, Filipino and Irish ancestry. She returned home to the Kimberley after pursuing a successful career as a professional dancer spanning over 15 years, which included performing in New York, Paris, London. She was nominated in Dance Australia’s Critic Choice Awards as ‘Dancer to Watch’.

Artistic Director Tos Mahoney said Tura’s award-winning Regional Programs are committed to community engagement, drawing on a 20-year history of connection and shared learning.

“From interactive school workshops to collaborations with local artists as well as cultural exchanges with Traditional Owners, the Sonus tours are very much a two-way process with touring artists being powerfully influenced by the people and places they meet and experience,” he said.

“The tours also make a significant contribution to the social, cultural, educational, and community lives of people living in regional centres and remote communities across the Kimberley through the community engagement program.

“Performing alongside dance groups such as Marrugeku and the Waringarri performers in Kununurra – this exchange of music and knowledge has formed a dialogue of artistic collaboration, providing a new platform for communities to celebrate the sounds of their country.”

The Sonus3 Tour 10 – 23 September 2021 Stephen Pigram, Esfandiar Shahmir, Tristen Parr and Tos Mahoney, Marrugeku dancers & guests – a celebration of music and dance through the Kimberley Kununurra | Warmun | Halls Creek | Fitzroy Crossing | Kooljaman | Djarindjin | Lombadina | One Arm Point | Beagle Bay | Broome FULL TOUR AND BOOKING DETAILS

Sonus3 promotional graphic


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