Meet the people behind Morning Star
Larry is a Galpu clan Indigenous musician from Arnhem Land. Larry recently became a custodian of ancient Galpu songlines and traditions, which were passed down to him by his father Djalu. He is a master yidaki player, carrying the sacred sounds and songlines of his clan. He has performed with his father Djalu in Tokyo and Adelaide and has performed with Gotye at Womadelaide, in addition to performances in Sydney and Melbourne with the Barra Band. Larry will be taking his band Malawurr to Europe in July 2019 to share the songlines with festival audiences, with the intention to inspire his community back home and teach the world about ancient knowledge.
Djalu is a Yolgnu elder, master Yidaki player, wise and knowledgeable Galpu custodian and ancient healer from Arnhem Land. Known as “Mr Didgeridoo'“ internationally, Djalu has toured extensively over the past 20 years sharing Galpu songlines and conducting yidaki workshops in the UK, Japan, Italy, Czech Republic, Germany, United States, United Arab Emirates and Australia. Djalu is also widely considered to be one of the most important master craftsmen in Arnhem Land, with an innate ability to choose highly resonant trees and craft them into incredible instruments. Djalu inclusively shares his knowledge with people from all cultures, believing the ‘barra’ or Westwind - the healing sound of the yidaki - is key to transcending cultural barriers, and connecting people to the earth.
Jason Gurruwiwi is a Galpu clan Indigenous musician from Arnhem Land. He is renowned in Arnhem land as the premiere traditional vocalist in ceremonial songlines. He has performed in Barra Band as lead vocalist since 2015, performing with Gotye at Womadalaide, and has toured Japan, Melbourne and Sydney. Barra Band’s album “Dhongirrinyu” was recorded in 2017 and was nominated for a NIMA award. Jason will be performing as lead vocalist in Malawurr.
Director Ben Strunin splits his time between Melbourne and London. Following the success of 2017’s Westwind: Djalu’s Legacy Ben was invited by Djalu and Larry Gurruwiwi to continue their partnership and make Morning Star. Ben has facilitated the partnerships between the international festival hosts and Malawurr, taking on the role of Tour Director in addition to tour documentarian.
Vernon Gurruwiwi is a Galpu clan Indigenous musician from Arnhem Land. He is a master Yidaki (Didjeridoo) player and expert dancer for traditional Bunggul ceremonies. He has performed in Barra Band since its formation in 2015. He has toured Japan, Melbourne and Sydney with Barra as well as performing with Gotye at Womadalaide. Barra Band’s album “Dhongirrinyu” was recorded in 2017 and was nominated for a NIMA award. Vernon will be performing keyboard, vocal and dancing duties in Malawurr.
Film producer Cathy is based in Melbourne, Australia. Cathy hails from a commercial background, having produced video and photographic content for globally recognised brands. She will also manage the European tour logistics, ensuring Malawurr have the best possible experience on their first tour.