Noongar poetry readings in Northam

After successful performances in York and Quairading, the final Bilya Kep Waagnkiny Nyoongar poetry readings will take place in Northam.

The Bilya Kep Waagnkiny Noongar poets that will be reading at the Link Theatre in Northam.

The Bilya Kep Waagnkiny Noongar poets that will be reading at the Link Theatre in Northam.

The poets will be accompanied by didgeridoo player Ian Wilkes and three members of the Perth Symphony Orchestra.

Music director Ian Willkes said the event is a one-of-a-kind show. 

“It's going to be an exciting collaboration for the group, complementing the poetry with traditional music fused with classical sounds from the orchestra,” he said.

The event will include poems that tell of the Stolen Generation, Noongar soldiers in the Vietnam war and trips through Country by new and established poets, the event maps a compelling range of local stories and history.

I’ve read my poetry around the world, but there’s nothing like reading alongside other Noongar poets and to our own community

Australian poet Alf Taylor

The Northam Bilya Kep Waagnkiny (meaning River Water Stories) poets include Janet Kickett, Yvonne Kickett, Deborah Moody, Alf Taylor, Rosalie Quartermaine, Merle Narkle-Goodwin, Julie Wynne, Daniel Hansen and Hayden Kickett.

Northam elder and poet Yvonne Kickett said the experience has been amazing. 

“It’s been quite a journey,” she said. 

“A group of us spent the winter writing poems in Community Arts Network workshops and have been touring our work to other towns, with new poets joining our shows along the way.”

Esteemed Australian poet Alf Taylor, who has grandchildren in Northam, has joined the ensemble and is looking forward to reading to family and friends.

“I’ve read my poetry around the world, but there’s nothing like reading alongside other Noongar poets and to our own community,” he said.

The poetry readings will take place at the Northam Link Theatre at 2pm on Sunday, November 5.

The Northam Link Theatre is located at 89 Duke Street East, Northam.