In summer 2019 Miriki Performing Arts from Australia and the Northern Pomo Dancers from California came together on the UC Berkeley campus on the Memorial Glade to build a bridge across the Pacific Ocean and raise awareness about two of the world's oldest living cultures. The event was co-hosted by the Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies at Berkeley, the Australian Government’s Regional Arts Fund through Regional Arts Australia, the Australia Council for the Arts, and the Embassy of Australia in Washington, D.C. A group of some 40 dancers ages 7 to 70 performed a series of stories that explored the relationship of fire between the Yidinji Nation from Cairns, Australia, and the Northern Pomo Tribe from the Redwood Valley Rancheria, in California. The performance was called Bayal Kaymanen, which translates to “Dancing Smoke” (“bayal” means “fire and smoke” in the Yidinji language, and “kaymanen” means “dance” in the Pomo language).
Director of Miriki Performing Arts (Pauline Lampton), co-founder of the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust (Corrina Gould), and Northern Pomo Dancer (Erica Estrada) will participate in a panel discussion on the role of cultural exchange on the UC Berkeley campus, a campus that obtained its land through the Morrill Land-Grant Act and resides on the Ohlone Homelands in Huichin. Bayal Kaymanen is part of a tradition of honoring native sovereignty and building global networks of kinship for people who continue to endure the colonization of their lands. Excerpts from a documentary about the project will be shared during the panel discussion.
Presented by UC Berkeley’s Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies.