Taking place over the weekend of 23–24 November, Australia’s fifth annual national First Nations dance competition Dance Rites returns to the Sydney Opera House Forecourt over two days for a free, cross-generational celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dance, language and culture for the whole family.
Dance Rites welcomes everyone to attend and is an opportunity for families and children to engage with, celebrate and immerse themselves in First Nations culture. Witness the powerful coming together of traditional customs, language and contemporary culture, with hundreds of First Nations dancers from all around Australia and performers from around the world.
The event is free, wheelchair accessible and suitable for all ages, and food and beverage pop-ups will appear across the Sydney Opera House Forecourt both days from 3pm. Families can also enjoy an array of professional music and dance performances staggered throughout the Dance Rites heats and finals.
Each group will showcase their culture through three dances: a welcome and a farewell dance and a ‘wildcard’ dance. An expert judging panel will assess the participating groups on the technical aspects of their performance and their engagement with language, skin-markings and traditional instruments. The winning group will receive $20,000, one runner-up will receive $5,000, and $3,000 will go to the highest-scoring ‘wildcard’ dance. The Rite of Passage Award acknowledges a dance troupe’s outstanding contribution to revitalising cultural knowledge and practices.
Sydney Opera House
Location & Map
Sydney Opera House Forecourt