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4 women, 4 cultures, 1 land. 

Tammi Gissell, Natasha Lee Rogers, Krista Clarke and Emma Laverty join together to present a performance of unity and celebration of culture on Ngunnawal land. Accompanied by Michael Liu


Presented in collaboration with the National Portrait gallery on the 13th Anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 13 September 2007.


Krista Clarke

Dance Artist/Ngunnawal Leader

Krista Clarke is a Ngunnawal woman around whom this event has been developed;

Statement by Krista Clarke of the Ngunnawal Youth Council;

Recognise has evolved from coming together to share aspects of our culture with our fellow non-indigenous and indigenous brothers and sisters. Dance has been a part of the Aboriginal culture for thousands of years, showcasing the Traditional and ceremonial aspects of our culture. With dance we are able to share stories, pass on lores and keep our culture alive.

Dances have played an important role in the spirituality of Indigenous Australian tribes, carrying the spirituality, stories and beliefs into our modern society. Our Ngunnawal youth want to share these experiences with you; to offer understanding if there is little and an opportunity to come together in similarities and differences.

The group is being established under the guidance and with the support of Roslyn Brown and the Ngunnawal Elders Council. The group will be the first of it’s kind in the ACT.

Photo; Craig Dear

Image; woman in black dress kneeling and placing ochre on her face.


Tammi Gissell

Dance Artist/Choreographer

Tammi Gissell is a dancer, performance artist and choreographer as well as being a published poetess and performance theorist. She has toured remotely, regionally, nationally and internationally in a range of performance genres over the past 24 years.She holds a Bachelor of Performance: Theory and Practice from the University of Western Sydney (UWS) and graduated Deans' Medallist and Reconciliation Scholar in 2005.  From 2007 - 2011 Tammi was Course Coordinator at the National Aboriginal and Islander Skills Association (NAISDA Dance College) In 2010 Tammi presented her research paper ‘Dancing the Dreaming: Temporality and Contemporary-Indigenous Dance at the World Dance Alliance Global Dance Event held in New York City.


In 2011, she was commissioned to write ‘A Powerful Pride: Reflections upon dance and performance of the Torres Strait Islands’ for THE TORRES STRAIT, a reference book to accompany the 2011 ‘AWAKENING’ season and celebration of Torres Strait Islander culture; held in conjunction with Queensland Museum, Queensland Performing Arts Centre and the Art Gallery of Queensland.  Tammi has taught, lectured or held residency at the Queensland University of Technology, Victorian College of the Arts (Wilin Centre), University of Newcastle, NAISDA Dance College, Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA), The McDonald College, Quantum Leap (QL2), Canberra Dance Theatre, National Institute for Youth Performing Arts and National Youth Dance Theatre.  


She has sat on the Australian Tertiary Dance Council, the BlakDance First Nations Dance Panel and the National Dance Forum and completed choreographic commissions for OCHRE Dance Company, Canberra Dance Theatre and delivered lectures to the DanScience Festival in Canberra. Tammi took up the role of Education Coordinator/Artist with The New Zealand Dance Company in 2017. She is currently overseeing the relocation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander collection of materials from the Museum of Applied Sciences to its new home in the Parramatta Powerhouse.

Emma Laverty.jpg

Emma Laverty 

Dance Artist

Emma Laverty also joins the Recognise team - Emma is a proud woman from the Boorooberongal Clan of the Darug Tribe, living here on Ngunnawal Ngambri land. Emma shares her culture through dance and art workshops and programs in schools and organisations across the ACT. Like many artists, Emma lost bookings from her independent arts practice during COVID time. She is extremely thankful however to have received continued support and job security with Dancedge School of Performing Arts. She can be found in the studio there teaching contemporary dance, jazz, jazz funk, early childhood dance, and adults tap.

Image; Woman smiling at the camera wearing black top and white ochre on her hair and chest.


Natasha Lee Rogers

Dance Artist

Natasha Lee Rogers is performing this weekend. She is an Independent artist that graduated from NAISDA Dance College in 2016 with a Diploma in Professional Dance Performance. She is a Noongar Women from the South West of Western Australia but has proudly grown up on Wonnarua Country in the Hunter Valley. During her time at NAISDA Natasha performed in four major productions at Carriage Works in Redfern, Sydney, whilst also having two of her own choreographed works performed. In Natasha’s last year at NAISDA she travelled to South Korea to perform in the Seoul Friendship Fair.  She has worked with Francis Rings, Elma Kris, Craig Bary, Iquail Shaheed and Vicki Van Hout. 


Since graduating from NAISDA Natasha has been involved in two residencies through Catapult Choreographic Hub alongside two other artists and also created a solo work for a showing in Newcastle and has also been involved many other performances throughout her first 2 years out of study.


Natasha has developed an Aboriginal Dance Ensemble for High school aged students to create and perform, this is a side of dance that she is very passionate about and enjoys. She has worked with Liz Lea and Ausdance ACT. Natasha strives to continue her work in the community, whilst continuing her passion for dance.

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