Indigenous artists challenge dance sector over lack of representation

Participants at the National Dance Forum challenged the sector over its failure to adequately support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.

Vicki Van Hout’s Long Grass was the only Indigenous work presented as part of Dance Massive 2015. Photo by Heidrun Löhr.

Indigenous participants at the recent National Dance Forum challenged the sector over its lack of engagement with and support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists.

The Forum, coinciding with the biennial festival Dance Massive, was held at Footscray Community Arts Centre from 19-21 March and featured 154 delegates, representing every state and territory.

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Richard Watts is ArtsHub's National Performing Arts Editor; he also presents the weekly program SmartArts on Three Triple R FM, and serves as the Chair of La Mama Theatre's volunteer Committee of Management. Richard is a life member of the Melbourne Queer Film Festival, and was awarded the status of Melbourne Fringe Living Legend in 2017. In 2020 he was awarded the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards' Facilitator's Prize. Most recently, Richard was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Green Room Awards Association in June 2021. Follow him on Twitter: @richardthewatts