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Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Ancient Aliens: Hosting the History Channel

The future for Bana Yarrralji it seems, in the pursuit of their vision of seeing local Aboriginal people on country and local Aboriginal lore more fully respected and restored to country .. the future it seems is in their being distinctly Aboriginal hosts providing a distinctly cultural experience to wide range of visitors.

Just last week these proposed Aboriginal hosts were provided with a most interesting and unusual hosting challenge.

Located along the main road into Cooktown, just north of the Bana Yarralji block is Kalkajacka mysterious black mountains, known within local Aboriginal lore as the 'place of spears'  (during the heat of the day black boulders crack, and when vehciles are not driving past, one can hear the sound of spears)

[a look at the 6 minute utube video attached in earlier posting below will give glimpse of these mountains, plus Marilyn Wallace calling out to 'old people' or 'presence' within those mountains]

The hosting challenge presented to Marilyn and Peter Wallace, was a request form a television production unit associated with the History Channel to film Kalkjacka and learn the local Aboriginal stories for these mountains, as part of a series they have been producing entitled 'Ancient Aliens'

Promethius Productions seemed to wish to send in a film crew collecting possible evidence of Ancient Aliens having been on this earth, and Bana Yarralji had to weigh up the value of participating in an exercise of this kind.

Marilyn Wallace and co. advised Promethius Entertainment of the sacred nature of the mountain; they advised of long held beliefs in the presence of spiritual beings within the mountains; they sough reassurance that their beliefs would be respected;  they sought contribution for hosting them and/or their film crew (ie a contribution to their vision).

In the end Bana Yarralji seized the opportunity to perform before the cameras, teach a film crew and audience about cultural protocol for country, and tell of their lore before a production company and an audience who are more likely to pay some attention and give some heed to the need for strangers to be wary of places like Kalkajacka. 

A small film crew of two filmed Peter Wallace being warmed or smoked by custodians for the mountains; Marilyn Wallace called out to the old people or presence within the mountains in a language listed by UNESCO as critically endangers, and three sets of interviews were held sitting on two spare tires in an open paddock, with the sun setting on Kalkajacka. 

A good, pleasant time was held by all (see below), but still have to see if such hosting pays .. and still waiting to see what lessons may (or may not) be learnt out of such a hosting exercise!!

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About Bana Yarralji

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Cultural entreprenuers moving onto country, building a base on country, working on country; caring for country, and hosting guests on country