OUR PLACE: Sharing story, film, dance, and song

18 June 2022


Spend a day with some of Sydney’s most exciting and engaging musicians, performers, artists and cultural leaders as Blacktown Arts, Australian National Maritime Museum and Vivid Sydney, presents Our Place.

OUR PLACE: Dance, song and story

Museum venues and site
12 pm - 7 pm

Our Place showcases a vibrant and interactive program of live performances, music, film, workshops and conversation.
Be inspired by stories and songs from First Nations Elders and artists, lifted up by the sounds of vocal and ukulele ensemble, Cook Islands Reo Manea, tap your feet to Sydney Sonata Singers as they revive Filipino classics, recite poetry with the Dorr’e Dari team from PYT Fairfield and much more. 


  • Uncle Wes Marne  
  • Jannawi Dance Clan 
  • Women’s Weaving and Connection with Tarni Eastwood 
  • Agal Dance 
  • Bahman Kermany
  • Mohammed Lelo
  • Cook Island Reo Manea
  • Jagath Dheerasekara
  • Sepora
  • Sydney Sonata Singers
  • Cicem by Suara Indonesia Dance 
  • The Mesopotamian Trio 
  • The Peacemakers Ensemble 
  • PYT Fairfield presents A Taste of Dorr-e Dari with Mahdi Mohammadi , Jawad Yaqoubi and Hasiba Ebrahimi and Heroines Heritage by Liliana Occhiuto


GATHERING HONEY, a dynamic program of short films, will also screen throughout the day. See our City through the eyes of Western Sydney’s most exciting artists and filmmakers as they share stories of family, ceremony, migration and place.

Our Place and Gathering Honey have been curated by Blacktown Arts



Uncle Wes Marne
Uncle Wes Marne is Bigambul man and community elder who has lived in Mount Druitt for the past 45 years. He is a storyteller, poet and custodian of his grandfather’s Creation and Dreamtime stories. Uncle Wes is a published author, and has toured his work, Fire Bucket at Sydney Festival (2016), Yirramboi First Nations Arts Festival in Melbourne (2017) and Way Out West Children’s Festival at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre (2017).

Uncle Wes comes from a long line of storytellers and has been working with children, primary and high schools, universities, gaols, social housing and justice to share his love of culture and stories throughout all the community.


Jannawi Dance Clan 


From the rich story telling traditions of Aboriginal NSW, Jannawi Dance Clan shines a light on strength, resilience and artistry of Aboriginal women, men, youth and dance culture today. Jannawi dance clan is an Indigenous dance company encompassing modern urban and traditional Aboriginal dance styles with traditional music by song man Matthew Doyle singing in the Sydney languages. The name Jannawi means ‘with me, with you’ in the Darug language of NSW Jannawi has a passion and are dedicated to continue and revitalize Sydney’s language culture and stories.

The Dance clan members come from diverse Aboriginal and/or Torre Strait Islander communities from around the county and consists of world class professionally trained multi skilled performing artists, whilst engaging with and mentoring community performers to be a part of and perform with Jannawi.
Jannawi is committed to nurturing a strong cultural and contemporary identity, following the traces of our ancestor’s footprints. This is achieved by remaining strongly connected to the roots of its tradition, and creating a cultural pathway of dance, song and stories, from both past and present.
Tarni Eastwood 
Tarni Eastwood is a Ngiyampaa and Guringai artist and curator based in western Sydney. She has a multidisciplinary arts practice working in photography, video, painting, weaving, sculpture and installation. Tarni emphasises the importance of weaving groups through its contributions to revitalise the culture whilst providing a safe space to pass down creative knowledge.
Agal Dance
Agal Dance Company was established in August 2018 and is based in Parramatta.  A contemporary dance company, Agal explores the style of Bharathanatyam (South Indian Classical Dance). It is the only company in Australia using a South Asian vocabulary to critically think about the world and the issues affecting the Australian South Asian diaspora.
Bahman Kermany
Bahman Kermany is an Iranian Australian painter who currently lives in Sydney. At the age of sixteen he moved to Australia where he finished High school. He holds a bachelor of visual Art from National Art School and currently exhibits with galleries. 
Bahman started to learn music in Iran and after migration he joined the school band. Having played with several different bands, soon he took interest in his native Iranian instrument, Dotar. With the help of his friend, teacher and mentor Mr. Maziar Kalantarian he starts to learn traditional on dotar and continues to learn from his master.
He has been finalist in several major art prizes and performing music, including Art gallery of NSW.
Mohammed Lelo

Mohammed Lelo is a master of the Qanun, And one of the few true proponents of the instrument here in Australia. He completed a Masters of Arabic Music on Maqam (the Arabic music modal system) at the National Academy of Fine Arts in Baghdad. He has toured across the Middle East as a regular performer for Arabic popstars, before moving to Australia. 
Mohammed’s practice crosses the borders of Arabic music to western jazz fusion. For this reason, he is a highly sought after artist due to his musical flexibility. He regularly performs in ensembles and collaborations with musicians for festivals, theatre and music events.

Cook Island Reo Manea
Be lifted by the sounds of vocal and ukulele ensemble Cook Islands Reo Manea. Sharing songs from their island homelands to Australian shores, these elders from the Blacktown and Western Sydney community gather to share culture and stories through music.

Jagath Dheerasekara
Jagath was granted political asylum in France in the early 90s when he had to leave Sri Lanka due to political and human rights activism. He settled in Australia with his family in 2008. Jagath’s multi-disciplinary work is chiefly informed by his personal and collective memory and the incidents of fragility of the principles of humanity. He has presented his work in a number of solo exhibitions and selected group exhibitions. His work is held in both institutional and private collections. Jagath lives and works in south-west Sydney. 



A self-proclaimed dreamy-dark-pop princess from South New Zealand; Sepora feels good being a little bad and she sings a little sad. This now Sydney-based artist performs solo regularly at select venues and private functions, exercising the ability to command stages with just a guitar & her voice, including notable Sydney venues Big Top & Sydney Town Hall.
With a striking moniker, Sepora takes her well-crafted originals to band, leading with a passionate vim that shines through their captivating live shows, and a soulful voice brings a timeless quality to a unique and dynamic repertoire.

Sydney Sonata Singers
The Sydney Sonata Singers are a close-knit association of music lovers whose idea of fun is to come together on weekends and sing the songs they grew up with. The choir master and conductor is the amiable and charismatic Loy Tagudin who also does the vocal arrangement and coaching. The majority of their repertoire is in Filipino in keeping with their intention to revive and popularise classic Filipino music.

Suara Indonesia Dance 
Suara Dance presents an energetic mix of dance, body percussion and song. With a blend of traditional and contemporary influences from their Indonesian heritage and cultural learnings, Suara Dance brings liveliness, originality and all-engaging performances to the stage. Prepare yourself to embark on a spectacular journey with this highly talented group as they share their story with you.

Cicem- ( pron: chi-chem) - A Story of Migration" which recently launched Inner West Fest at the Marrickville Town Hall in February 2022. 
The piece is inspired by the journey of migratory birds, Cicem is an exploration of migration. The desire and hope we place in a new land and the struggle to find what it means to be home.
Followed by traditional Acehnese Body percussion from Aceh, North Sumatra. 

The Mesopotamian Trio 
The Mesopotamian Trio was established in 2018, and specialises in playing Mesopotamian (Iraqi) folk music in a contemporary style.

The Peacemakers Ensemble 
The Peacemakers Ensemble was established in 2016, and perform Arabic and Middle-Eastern songs from Lebanon, Egypt, Syria and beyond. 

PTY Fairfield
PYT Fairfield’s vision asserts and celebrates Australia as a culturally diverse nation.
PYT Fairfield is the only professional theatre company in Western Sydney focused on the development and engagement of local young and emerging artists as core practice.
PYT has a reputation as a brave and transformative theatre company who make urgent work that explores the critical issues of our times. We challenge the conventions of traditional theatre and respond to the needs and aspirations of the next generation of artists. We do this by creating innovative performance and social artistic experiences in theatre spaces and across diverse urban sites of Fairfield, Western Sydney and beyond, and with a key focus on cultural diversity.
PYT has presented work across Australia including at the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Festival, Arts House Melbourne and Adelaide Festival Centre. Our work has garnered high acclaim and has won a HELPMANN Award and nomination, SMAC Award and Australian Dance Award.
A Taste of Dorr-e Dari
Join us for this intimate poetry salon with the cast members from PYT Fairfield’s smash hit, Sydney Festival show Dorr-e Dari: A Poetic Crash Course in the Language of Love. 
In a pop up cabaret format the Dorr-e Dari performers will be sharing stories of life and love from the streets Mashhad, Tehran, Kabul and Merrylands. Please bring whatever problems of the heart you have with you. The great poet Hafez will solve everything. No problem to difficult. Satisfaction guaranteed. 
If you like this taste of this, there is plenty more. Catch Dorr-e Dari: A Poetic Crash Course in the Language of Love at Sydney Opera House 9-10 September 2022. 
Liliana Occhiuto
Liliana is an emerging queer artist based and working within Western Sydney who specialises in creating multi-disciplinary artworks crafted to evoke empathy through sensory immersion. Throughout her art career, she has created works suited to various art purposes, including; gallery spaces, film, theatre, podcasts and standalone pieces.

Liliana has utilised creative solutions to make works that have served communal purposes. Be it via education, collaboration or active consultation with local arts bodies and organisations, she has repeatedly showcased her abilities to be a creative force capable of creating engaging works suited for various purposes. Her work with Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, The Art Gallery of New South Wales, PYT Fairfield, Information and Cultural Exchange (I.C.E), PACT, CuriousWorks, as well as the Creative Leadership In Learning (CLIL) initiative for the Sydney Opera House, can attest to this.

Heronies Heritage is a podcast that aims to honour the lives of heroic female figures within the Fairfield region.
Having stories solely sourced from elderly women with cultural significance to Fairfield, this work aims to capture the stories of migrants, mothers, rebels and freedom fighters. Told over 10 episodes, this podcast aims to celebrate the lives of these women through the use of historically charged audio stories, complete with immersive soundscapes to reflect the nature of each episode.




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