It's Bak'bididi Time!

The community of Ramingining is abuzz with noise; finishing touches to the stage are going up and final markings on ovals are being made in preparation for the annual Ramingining Bak’bididi Festival.

Held over an action-packed three days, the Bak’bididi Festival celebrates the unique mix of traditional and contemporary performing arts, culture, heritage and sporting talents of Yolngu people and the Ramingining Community in East Arnhem Land.

In 2012, the Festival will be known as the ‘ALPA Bak’bididi Festival’ in acknowledgement of the generous and ongoing support of Major Sponsor the Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation who is celebrating 40 years in Arnhem Land.

The Bak'bididi Festival, infamously known for the discovery of the Chooky Dancers and their yolngu style Zorba the Greek, which to date has attracted over 2 million hits on You Tube, will again host a range of visual, traditional and contemporary activities with local and nation renowned indigenous artists. The main Festival programme will commence on Friday 7, Saturday 8 & Sunday 9 September with around 30 different artists, acts and activities. 

Festival Coordinator Gilbert Walkuli said ‘We are going to kick the event off with an official opening ceremony, followed by a night of bands, traditional dancing and music'.

‘This year the Festival committee is once again partnering with the EASC Youth, Sport & Recreation to run the sports component of the festival. Footy, touch, basketball & softball competitions will start on Saturday morning and go through to finals on Sunday afternoon’.

‘We are also very pleased to once again host a fashion parade, displaying clothing and products from Ramingining designers & artists’.

This year the Bak'bididi Festival will be sporting a 'new-look' with the introduction of a new festival logo designed by local Ramingining artist Bobby Bunungurr and endorsed by the community.

'The logo has the traditional green tree frog and other elements seen at the festival - the music, instruments, dancing and acknowledgment of ancestors' said Walkuli.

Ramingining is a small, remote mainland community in Arnhem Land and located some 550 kilometres east of Darwin. Please note - Ramingining is a traditional Aboriginal community with restricted access (a fee may apply).

Permission to visit is required by law and can be made through the Northern Land Council directly. Total alcohol restrictions apply

Event Details:

Friday 7 September – Opening Ceremony @ 7.30pm followed by Bands til late

Saturday 8 September – Sporting Competitions rounds during the day, Fashion Parade Saturday Night followed by Bands & dancing til late

Sunday 9 September - Sporting Competitions during the day with finals in afternoon, Closing address and Bands, dancing & Comedy acts til late.

For more information including band details, please contact Festival Coordinator Gilbert Walkuli, Walkuli.gilbert@gmail.com , phone 08 8979 7906, or check out the official ALPA Bak'bididi Festival Facebook Page.