Folk Festival 2019
Emily Wurramara was born on Groote Eylandt, a large island of the northern coast of Australia, one of the country’s most remote areas. She apparently enjoyed a simple life of fishing, camping and beach parties until her family moved to Brisbane looking for better opportunities. Wurramara never lost her connection to home where she was inspired by the music of her people, the Warnindhilyagwa, and took up her first of many instruments, the violin, after a return visit. Gifted with a beautiful, earthy voice, Wurramara began writing songs about her childhood and the shock of racism her family faced when entering white society. A song “Hey Love” on her first full length album, Milyakburra, released last year, honours her mother’s strength and resilience in the face of racism she dealt with at boarding school.
Wurramara sings in English and her Indigenous language, Anindilyakwa. This is a way of embracing and preserving her cultural heritage after she initially stopped speaking her language due to facing shame and embarrassment by other kids in Brisbane. Milyakburra and Wurramara’s EP Black Smoke are confident collections of folk, pop and traditional Warnindhilyagwa music.
Biography by Sean Myers
Only the evening schedules are currently available. Check back for the full schedule in mid-June.