Govt seeks new First Nations performing arts initiatives

The Palaszczuk Government is calling for proposals for new contemporary First Nations performing arts initiatives that can be presented at the new Centre of Contemporary Arts Cairns.

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said proposals were now being accepted for performing arts initiatives, by or with First Nations artists, to activate the new Centre of Contemporary Arts Cairns (CoCA) when it reopens later this year.

“The centre is now undergoing a multi-million dollar revitalisation and once completed, it will have a renewed focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts,” Ms Enoch said.

“This focus will help strengthen the sector and further the ability to share our unique Queensland stories and cultivate cultural tourism in the region.

“We’re seeking proposals for performances, masterclasses, residencies and events, all of which will further support Queensland’s wealth of talent in the region.”

Member for Cairns Michael Healy said the vision for CoCA was to provide more rich arts experiences for audiences and a home for local arts companies.

“Along with a vibrant and welcoming new look, the current upgrade will provide more rehearsal, development and office space, along with improved theatre facilities, to support the local arts community,” he said.

“The CoCA will continue to be a home to JUTE Theatre Company and KickArts Contemporary Arts.”

Member for Cook Cynthia Lui said this was a great opportunity for arts organisations from across Far North Queensland to put forward their ideas.

“The upgraded CoCA will be a place where local artists tell the unique stories of the First Nations of Far North Queensland and I encourage everyone to put forward their ideas for performances, classes and other events,” Ms Lui said.

The call for proposals at the Centre of Contemporary Arts Cairns is part of the Backing Indigenous Arts initiative through Arts Queensland. For more than a decade, this program has helped to build a sustainable and ethical Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts industry.

An Independent Expert Panel will review the proposals and make recommendations to Arts Queensland.

Proposals for the Backing Indigenous Arts Performing Arts CoCA Cairns Call Out programclose on 23 April 2019. For more information visit:

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