Welcome to Country and Welcome to WAM Online

Welcome to Country and Welcome to WAM Online

Enjoy being welcomed to WAM Online with a traditional Wiradjuri Welcome to Country, performed by Wiradjuri Elder, Darren Wighton.

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Welcome to Country

Thank you to Wiradjuri Elder, Darren Wighton, for his beautiful and very grounding traditional Welcome to Country. Filmed in the Welcome circle of the Wiradjuri village, Wonga Wetlands, by Jacqui Schulz.

Message from the Festival Director

Well it feels very surreal to be presenting the Festival program online this year, but also pretty amazing to be able to do so given this isn't the case for so many of our arts colleagues involved in live events. We are certainly missing the buzz of preparing for a live festival and the convergence of authors and audience on Albury for WAM, but we’re also very excited about going online to proceed with our annual gathering and exchange of stories and ideas.

It really is a great privilege to work on the WAM Festival and to live and work on Wiradjuri country. I’d like to thank Wiradjuri elder, Darren Wighton, for filming his traditional Welcome at Albury’s beautiful Wonga Wetlands and for welcoming us all and helping ground us in place as we venture forth into the virtual arena. I’d also like to acknowledge all Wiradjuri people and pay respect to Elders, past, present and emerging, as the traditional custodians of the country on which WAM is based.

On behalf of the Write Around the Murray festival team and committee, I welcome you all to take part in WAM online. We hope you enjoy hearing from all the fantastic authors and presenters who have joined with us to take part in some stimulating discussions as part of the Past Lives/Present Tense themed Festival. Most events enable you to type questions to our presenters in realtime.

To all you Albury Wodonga locals, we’re really looking forward to hearing your reflections on the theme of 'home' and hearing about some of the stories you see hidden on our streets, as part of the online storytelling projects: The Neighbourhood and Secrets of the Streets. It's not too late to get involved and submit your stories as these projects will continue to grow.

Have a look at the complete festival program here. We're so proud to be able to deliver such a strong program again this year. Every single event is going to be worth NOT leaving home for! And all events are free, so please do join us. Most events will also be available for replay if you can't tune in at the time.

Take care everyone, look after yourselves and each other, and we’ll look forward to welcoming you in person at a future WAM festival here in Albury Wodonga.

Ann-maree Ellis
WAM Festival director,
On behalf of the Festival Team and Committee

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Our 2020 theme, Past Lives/Present Tense, explores voices and stories from the past, together with contemporary storytelling, to ask questions about where we are, what we know and how to live in times of crisis and transition.

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