A celebration of water and the Yarra, at Queensbridge Square, Southbank
Multiple performances: March 1 & 2, 2014.
Body of Water was made by The Urban Water Performance Group.
The UWPG (subsequently The EPA) explored taken-for-granted and hidden relationships in the urban experience of water, to heighten awareness of its ecological and cultural values.
Southbank, a former Indigenous meeting and watering place, has become a tourist meeting and watering place. It is not a place to feel the water on the skin, to sample its taste, to gaze into translucent waters. It is a place where the river has endured ill-treatment: the demolition of its waterfall, the subsequent salination of its upstream waters, litter, industrial waste and suburban run-off.
And, therefore, it was an exciting challenge. To recapture its Indigenous history, to celebrate its former and current flow, to create an immersive participatory environment that reflected the aesthetics, experience, atmospheres and history of this site on the Birrarung/Yarra River.
Uncle Larry Walsh described the river’s revenge on John Batman’s son, we danced, blinded by empty buckets, recreated waterfalls and torrents, improvised river-music.
Presented by The Monash Centre for Theatre and Performance and the Monash Academy of Performing Arts in conjunction with Professor Maudie Palmer’s Birrarung Project and the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.