The prominence of Indigenous filmmaking in Australia continues to grow with the premiere of Songlines on Screen on NITV this Sunday, June 12.
Songlines are an integral part of Aboriginal belief systems – a kind of complex combination of story, music, geography, history and myth. A co-production between NITV and Screen Australia, Songlines on Screen takes some of those stories from the remotest parts of Northern, Western, and Central Australia and presents them in the form of eight short narrative documentaries that will air on Sunday nights.
“We’re proud to have partnered with NITV to deliver Songlines on Screen.” said Penny Smaallacombe, Head of Indigenous at Screen Australia. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for Indigenous screen practitioners to record and celebrate the Songlines that are vital to the preservation of Indigenous Australian culture. Bringing these songlines to audiences through bold, interesting storytelling on screen has been a collaborative process between the filmmakers and custodians and we’re delighted to join NITV in helping to facilitate this process.”
Cornel Ozies, director of Footprints, the debut episode, explained, “Songlines are a library of information. They are many things: a road map, a bible, our history. The examples and stories in Songlines guide the way we live and give us our unique cultural identities. But our culture and history is an oral one, if it is not talked about, it is forgotten. In order for our culture to survive, it must move from oral to documented. To record these Songlines to film is a natural progression. We must use any devices at our disposal to keep our traditions alive. The songs that the old people sing and pass along are about the country and the sacred places where songs belong.”
For more information, head to the NITV website.