Four Winds held its first classical and world music concert in 1991. In the 27 years since, this event has developed into the annual Four Winds Easter Festival — attracting thousands of music lovers each year — with a year-round program of creative and educational projects.
Since its inception, Four Winds has had a clear vision for its program of community engagement, natural conservation and partnerships with the local Yuin community.
In particular, the organisation is committed to bringing Indigenous and non-Indigenous knowledge together, fostering two-way learning in order to bring about a deeper personal understanding of the Yuin culture and country that still flourishes on the Far South Coast of New South Wales.
Cultural Connections is partnering with Four Winds to support the employment of an Aboriginal Creative Producer, Cheryl Davison.
Cheryl is working with the Aboriginal community of the far south coast of New South Wales to develop creative content for the Four Winds Youth Music Festival, SPRING, in 2019 and the Four Winds Easter Festival in 2019–20.
Cheryl is developing a Koori community choir that comes together regularly to enhance skills in singing and songwriting, with a focus on incorporating and revitalising local language for performance at the Easter Festival in 2020.
Cheryl is also organising a workshop to share the skills of possum-skin cloak making, and is working with Yuin choreographers and dancers to revitalise an old Yuin fishing song.
Through quality performance, production and presentation these projects aim to bring Aboriginal people of the far south coast of New South Wales together to share their cultural knowledge and skills and, in the process, develop and strengthen them further.
Cheryl says that these projects bring Yuin culture to life:
It will not be in a museum, but dancing about and informing audiences and inspiring my people — helping us stand tall.
The Cultural Connection program has enabled Four Winds to engage an Aboriginal Creative Producer to join our team. Four Winds has a long history of working with our local Yuin community, as well as presenting high profile Indigenous artists on our stage. However, having a local Yuin person now directing this programming and presentation of work enriches its authenticity and has opened our organisation to a new world view.
We cherish the opportunity to enable the practice, teaching and maintenance of cultural connection to country, through language, song, and traditional skills, enhancing this region’s creative experience.
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Banner photo: Steve Back Photography