When the 2020 Mt Isa Mines’ Rodeo shifted to an online event this year thanks to Covid-19 restrictions, Bamaga Productions stepped up to help make the opening ceremony memorable and meaningful.

Bamaga Productions reached out to the Gubbi Gubbi Dancers and, on a sparkling July day at Pt Cartwright, filmed a Welcome to Country with the sands of the Sunshine Coast as the backdrop.

The Welcome to Country was seen as part of the ‘virtual’ rodeo, live streamed online internationally on Saturday August 8.

As well as being seen online, the Rodeo became a virtual event, shown to guests gathered at a function at Eaton’s Hill, which is traditional Gubbi Gubbi land.

Lyndon Davis, a direct descendent of the Gubbi Gubbi people and founder of the dance group, delivered the Welcome to Country in both traditional Gubbi Gubbi language and in English. Lyndon also acknowledged the Kalkadoon people – the Traditional Custodians of the land that hosted the Mt Isa Rodeo ring competitions.

“This was a simple and respectful way to include the Gubbi Gubbi people in the launch event that was being held on their traditional lands and shown across the world. It also gave the organisers the chance to recognise and include the owners of the land on which the competition events were filmed,” said Karen Hanna, Bamaga Productions Managing Director and producer of the Welcome to Country video.

“It’s wonderful to think that people, not just in Australia, but in countries around the globe had the opportunity to see this important cultural tradition.”

Bamaga Productions is specialising in live event ceremonial and performance videos of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dance groups. Bamaga Productions has access to dozens of established and emerging traditional and contemporary Indigenous artists and their communities around Queensland.

Contact us if you’d like to start a project with Bamaga Productions.

Image: Gubbi Gubbi dancers with Bamaga Productions’ Managing Directors Karen Hanna Miller  and  Nancy Bamaga.