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It's Storytime!

Darwin Symphony Orchestra (DSO) has joined forces with Larrakia artist and author Jason Lee to present a very special morning of storytelling. 

By Tierney Seccull

Lee has written and illustrated children's books that share tales of fishing, cooking, gardening and eating, and having fun with the family. Join Lee as he reads his sweet stories, Catching Bait and Nanna's Barramundi, backed by a sweet soundscape from an ensemble of DSO musicians. 

This creative collab between Lee and the DSO came about when DSO Education and Outreach Officer, Tara Murphy, reached out to Library For All – an organisation that creates books and learning in local languages – for Top End stories. She says Lee’s books jumped out at her from the get-go. 

“They just grabbed me! They say you shouldn’t judge a book by the cover, but that’s exactly what I did, they're so cute,” she says. 

“It’s always interesting to look at our own community for stories that are relevant, because the themes are familiar. Catching Bait is about a little boy casting a net to catch bait, which is just something everyone in Darwin is familiar with. 

“Jason’s such an amazing artistic character, a jack of all trades and a wonderful artist, and when he reads his stories, it really brings you back to sitting down at story time as a kid.” 

Lee says he hopes his books help to keep culture strong, and educates young ones. 

“It's about making them aware that language is still here, because we started reviving the language about four years ago. I don’t think many kids know that this is Larrakia land. And it’s just trying to make it fun, so it will engage them to learn.” 

A renowned illustrator and artist, it was the International Year of Indigenous Languages in 2019 that inspired Lee to delve into the world of children’s books. 

“There’s just one other Larrakia book out there, and there’s nothing else. So that’s what inspired me. I’ve done a plant one, a sea creature one, bird one and a mammals and reptiles one, now. It makes me proud to get the language out there. Just proud, really.” 

As well as stories and music, there are other creative activities for the kids to enjoy while they listen, including colouring-in. 

Be whisked away to Nanna’s kitchen, catch some bait and fish for yummy barra, and enjoy this exciting musical Larrakia adventure. 

WHEN SAT 16 SEP | 9.30AM & 11AM
COST $5-$15 +BF

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