Still We Rise + Q&A
Featuring Dr Gary Foley and John Harvey in conversation with Davey Thompson
In 1972, activists erected an Aboriginal Tent Embassy on the lawns opposite Parliament House. Fifty years on, this archival documentary takes a bold dive into a year of incendiary protest and revolutionary change for First Nations people.
The 1972 planting of a beach umbrella by young Aboriginal activists in the lawns opposite Parliament House sparked passion across the country. Sitting strong and proud on Ngunnawal country, the Aboriginal Tent Embassy soon became a marker for justice, uniting people across the nation in the fight for land rights.
With a First Nations lens, director John Harvey has interrogated hours of archival footage to celebrate the young activists who fought so hard to inspire generations to come. Featuring powerful speeches from Paul Coe, Chicka Dixon, Gary Foley, Bobbi Sykes and Denis Walker, the epic poetry of Oodgeroo Noonuccal, the music of Worimi composer Leon Rodgers and many celebrated First Nations performers like Miiesha, King Stingray and Dan Sultan, Still We Rise captures the urgency, visceral anger, and defiance of those seeking change and how the urgency of their activism resonates across 50 years to our own contemporary reality.
Stick around after the screening to hear Dr Gary Foley and John Harvey in conversation with Davey Thompson.
Still We Rise is a Tamarind Tree Pictures production in association with VicScreen, financed with the assistance of Screen Australia’s First Nations Department. Developed and produced in association with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
About the speakers
About John Harvey
John Harvey is an Indigenous storyteller. He is a director, producer and writer across screen and stage and is the creative director of Brown Cabs. His award-winning work has appeared in film festivals in Australia and overseas, while his productions have been staged by theatre companies across Australia and New Zealand. He is the writer and director of documentary Still We Rise (2022).
John's commission, Canopy is part of the Story of the Moving Image exhibition here at ACMI.
About Dr Gary Foley
Gumbainggir activist, academic, writer and actor, Professor Gary Foley was a co-founder of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in Canberra in 1972. He was involved in the formation of the Aboriginal Legal Service in Redfern and the Aboriginal Medical Service in Melbourne and Sydney. He co-wrote and appeared in the first Aboriginal stage production in 1972, Basically Black, helped to establish the National Black Theatre, and he has starred in films such as Backroads and Dogs in Space, as well as being the first director of the Aboriginal Arts Board of the Australia Council.
About Davey Thompson
Davey Thompson is a Bidjara, Inningai, Wakka Wakka and Gubbi Gubbi man from Barcaldine. Currently living on Wurundjeri Country, he’s a writer, producer, activist, and star of All my Friends are Racist, as well as Production Executive – First People’s Lead at VicScreen.
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