The Castlemaine State Festival is deeply committed to its Primary Schools Program and once again invites all 1500 primary school students from across Mount Alexander Shire to participate in 5 days of inspiring arts events. Featuring Yolngu art from the Balnhdhurr exhibition and wonderful meetings with Yolngu artists visiting us from northeast Arnhem Land, with internationally acclaimed young Philippine artist Leeroy New, and gripping theatre from Swiss company Nicole & Martin, this year’s Primary Schools Program promises a kaleidoscope of cultural and artistic riches.

Balnhdhurr is the title of a wonderful exhibition of prints from the Yirrkala Print Space that Castlemaine is honoured and delighted to welcome, together with some of its artists, to the 2017 Festival. The Balnhdhurr artworks showcase Yolngu respect for clan and Country, with many prints relating to the creation stories and Law as passed on by their ancestors, highlighting the importance of kinship.

Leeroy New is a contemporary Filipino fine artist whose works overlap with theatre, film, fashion, and visual arts. Edgy and innovative, he was one of the designers of the legendary muscle dress that was used by Lady Gaga in her music video ‘Marry the Night’. Leeroy is in Castlemaine to make La Puerta Del Laberinto, a temporary sculptural installation on the front wall of the Castlemaine Art Museum.

Nicole & Martin is an independent not-for-profit theatre company that creates, produces, performs and tours original work. Founded in 1999 by performers Nicole and Martin Gubler-Shranz, Nicole & Martin grew out of a desire to create truly communal theatre without borders of location, age, language, money or background.

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Artback NT | Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Art Centre | Yirrkala Print Space | Australia Council for the Arts | Northern Territory Government