Project Description

July 2013 – Tagai Buway “Culture Remains” (I am the Future)

‘Culture Remainz’ was written, recorded, filmed and edited over five days as part of a mentoring process by Desert Pea Media artists, high school students and staff at Tagai State College in July 2013.

Thursday Island, also known as ‘TI’ or ‘Waybeni’ is the administrative and commercial center of the Torres Strait Islands (TSI) — lying 39 kilometers north of the Cape York Peninsula.

The people of the Torres Strait are strongly connected to their ancestral lands and traditional culture is very strong and vibrant here. This particular production aimed to create a story that would recognize and advocate awareness of the struggles of the past, yet celebrate TSI culture and represent the different cultural groups that make up the Zenadh Kes (Torres Strait).

Special thanks to Deb Belyea, Rachel Templeton, Patrick Mau, Gail Mabo, and Richard Matthew

We pay our respects to the Kawrareg people – traditional owners of the country upon which this story was told.

*Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that photographs/videos may contain images of deceased persons, which may cause sadness or distress.

LYRICS

Kaiwalawgal — (Inner Islanders)
Maluilgal – (Near Western Islanders)
Guda Maluiglgal — (Top Western Islanders)
Kulkalgal – (Central Islanders)
Kemer Kemer Meriam – (Eastern Islanders)

Wiswei my Pamle, where yupla gor?
(How are you my families, where are you going?)
Where the tagai (star constellation) shine,
and the sager (southeast trade winds) blow,
White sand, blue sea where the wongai grow
This TI, Tagai Buway, OH!

North, South, East, West
We representing the Zenadh Kes (Torres Strait)
Island dress – bu shell (traditional instrument) come.
Warup (traditional drum) – kap kar (traditional dance)
Pite the thrum! (beat the bamboo drum)

Kaka nali Kari ker kerem- (I am the future)
Ngay wagelaw goeygapa- (I am the future)
Kaka nali Kari ker kerem- (I am the future)
Ngalpa wagel goeygayka – (we are the future)

Zuzi’s (grass skirt) to skinnies — canoes to dinghies
Dharis (head dress) to snap-backs —
Maka mak (dance marker) to Air Jordies
Turtle to Big Mac — dugong to snack pack
Kapkar, warup, kulap (seed rattle) to rap track.

Dress code, language, diet changed.
Pride in yumi (our) culture remains.
Four winds at my back, my plans are made –
Warrior blood flowing in my veins

Bipor Taim (in the past) peeps got ruled by the man
Ration system, no pride, no land
Slap to the face my people of the Straits
Never even got a chance to dice they own place

Don’t just mark time (dance in one spot) – it’s time to move on
One voice. Create a new song
Bigger than King Kong it’s island rap.
I am the future — best believe that!

Kaka nali Kari ker kerem- (I am the future)
Ngay wagelaw goeygapa- (I am the future)
Kaka nali Kari ker kerem- (I am the future)
Ngalpa wagel goeygayka – (we are the future)

CREDITS

Tagai State College Students – Co-Writers
Toby Finlayson – Director/ Co-Writer/ Cinematographer/ Editor
Joel Westlake – Composer / Music Director/ Co-Writer
Gail Mabo – Cultural Consultant/ Mentor/ Choreographer
Roy Weiland – Motion Graphics/ Grading
David Nicholas – Audio Mixing
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