Two Thirroul Dance Academy students have been chosen to perform in the NSW Public School Aboriginal Dance Company, which selects the best Indigenous dancers around the state.
Zipporah (Zippy) Corser-Anu and Zoe Brown joined the company a couple of months ago and had their first performance at the Netball World Cup opening ceremony last month.
Zoe’s mother Rebeka Brown was thrilled her daughter is embracing her culture.
‘‘She’s very proud of who she is, she’s not afraid to talk about her Aboriginality to anybody, which is so inspiring,’’ said Ms Brown.
Zippy’s mother Christine Anu said the girls were two of the 24 chosen from 1400 other dancers to be perform in the company.
‘‘They didn’t have a prerequisite for the Indigenous dancing. It was really about embodying the style of the Bangarra Dance Company’s choreography, which is very grounded,’’ Ms Anu said.
Zippy’s cultural background is Torres Strait Islander, whose style of dance Zippy has been brought up around since she was a small child.
‘‘(Torres Strait Islander dancing) is completely different from Aboriginal dance style. It’s not mimicry, it’s more stylised movement with arms, rhythmical hand actions with either rattles or props that help to tell the story of the song,’’ Ms Anu said.
Zoe descends from the Dunghutti tribe, from the Kempsey region on the Mid North Coast and she decided to audition for the company to express her culture through dance.
‘‘One of the things she has taken away from the last performance was how to dance our totem, which is the praying mantis,’’ Ms Brown said. ‘‘After her first week of rehearsal, she came home and told me ‘I ... want to dance for Bangarra (Dance Theatre company).’’
Their next performance will be at the State Dance Festival held at the Seymour Centre, September 14-18.