Ancient stories in endangered Aboriginal language move into the future

Ancient stories in endangered Aboriginal language move into the future

Ancient stories in endangered Aboriginal language move into the future

Updated 30 May 2013, 10:56 AEST

Indigenous singer songwriter Shellie Morris returns to her late grandmother's country, the Borroloola region in Australia's Northern Territory, to work with local Songwomen and deliver a landmark album. 

There are less than ten fluent speakers of Yanyuwa language around Borroloola, a remote town in the Gulf of Carpentaria.  Leanne Norman is one of them.
She assisted Aboriginal singer-songwriter Shellie Morris with learning and understanding the ancient stories kept in the women's songs. These traditional songs and stories, reinterpreted in a contemporary way,  feature on a landmark album called  'Ngambala Wili-ji Wunungu' (Together We Are Strong).  
 
Sang entirely in Yanyuwa language with the Borroloola women's choir, the album is the outcome of the Song Peoples Sessions, a project which  connects contemporary Indigenous singer-songwriters with the music of their ancestors, exploring traditional song cycles to create new forms of cultural expression.
 
It is a deeply personal album for Shellie Morris who grew up in Sydney. She was encouraged by her adoptive family to explore her Aboriginal heritage and went back home to the Northern Territory. Music brought her back to her roots in Borroloola. She went back to her grandmother's country to record this album and worked with the song women of Borroloola.
 
Shellie Morris and Leanne Norman share this wonderful journey of discovery and reconnection with Isabelle Genoux 
 
 
Discover more Australian Indigenous stories from the ABC here:  http://www.abc.net.au/indigenous/

 

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