Media Release 20 April 2011

RE-VISIONING ANZAC

A new event will be added to the Anzac commemorations in Canberra this year - an Anzac eve Peace Lantern Parade and Vigil which will╩assemble on top of Mt Ainslie from 5 pm Easter Sunday 24 April 2011 and parade down the mountain, past the Australian War Memorial and assemble again for an all-through-the-night╩lantern-lit Vigil in Anzac Parade.

The Anzac eve Peace Lantern Parade and Vigil is a project of Canberra people seeking new and artful ways to recall the voices of peace as we express our respect for the war-dead and our heartsickness about the trauma of war in the approach to the Anzac centenary in 2015.

Over 200 candle-lit lanterns have been prepared for the event in community lantern making workshops over the past six weeks. Canberra's A Chorus of Women and Jude Kelly, a Yamajti-Noongar woman from West Australia, have composed new laments for the Vigil and they will be joined by the Ecopella Choir and the Solidarity Choir in songs of peace.

"This Anzac eve, we are seeking to evoke the sacred as we remember the war-dead, the environmental destruction of war and the traumatic impacts of war on individuals, families and our culture through generations," said Graeme Dunstan of Peacebus.com, master lantern maker for the event and long-time cultural activist

Graeme is deeply influenced by the critique of Anzac in the book of Marilyn Lake, Henry Reynolds etal, "What's Wrong with Anzac?" Professor Lake was in Canberra last week speaking on this theme at Manning Clark House.

"Like many others I am concerned about the way Australian history is being militarised and national identity fabricated as a product of the forges of war. This is further reinforced by the massively funded cultural policies of recent Labor and Coalition Governments," he said. "These policies seem to bolster Australian Governments' unwise engagements in wars against peoples who are not our enemies."

"Time to re-vision Anzac," he said.

"This Anzac we will create a new event which will artfully acknowledge the frontier wars and the ongoing suffering of Aboriginal people, refugees and migrants, remembering that almost everyone in this land has a family story of trauma and loss through war."

Singer-songwriter Jude Kelly, elder in residence at the Tent Embassy, said: "The effects of war are long and enduring, and with wars come trauma and heartache. With this Lantern Vigil, we hope to rebalance the social equity of our human family and become more humane and tolerant people where words and communication are more valuable than guns and ammunition that kill and divide us."

Lantern making for the Anzac eve Peace Lantern Vigil project has been hosted by the Aboriginal Tent Embassy and the Vigil will take place in association with the╩New Way Summit╩which will take place there 21 - 24 April

PHOTO OPPORTUNITY
from 11 am Thursday 21 April 2011
at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy, Canberra

Lantern making will be in progress. Lantern maker Graeme Dunstan, Auntie Jude Kelly and Dr Glenda Cloughley from A Chorus of Women, will be available for comment.

Further information
www.peacebus.com/AnzacLanterns
Graeme Dunstan, Peacebus.com, 0407 951 688
Glenda Cloughley, A Chorus of Women 6239 6483 or 0408 628 221
Johanna McBride, Musical Director, A Chorus of Women 0402 050 885 on Saturday or Sunday
Auntie Jude Kelly, Aboriginal Tent Embassy, 0400 683 649

Media Release 13 April 2011

RECALLING PEACE TO ANZAC DAY

Come Anzac Eve, hundreds of Canberra citizens will be bearing a light for peace in a lantern parade which will go from the top of Mt Ainslie, past the War Memorial to a lantern-lit Vigil in Anzac Parade.

assembling from 5 pm Easter Sunday 24 April 2011
on top of Mt Ainslie, ACT

The Anzac Eve Peace Lantern Parade and Vigil is a project of Canberra people seeking new and artful ways to recall the voices of peace as we express our respect for the war-dead and our heartsickness about the trauma of war in the approach to the Anzac centenary in 2015.

Over 200 candle-lit lanterns have been prepared for the event in community lantern making workshops over the past six weeks. Canberra's A Chorus of Women and Jude Kelly, a Yamajti-Noongar woman from West Australia, have composed new laments for the Vigil and they will be joined by the Ecopella (save-the-world music) Choir and the Solidarity Choir in songs of peace.

"This Anzac eve, we are seeking to evoke the sacred as we remember the war-dead, the environmental destruction of war and the traumatic impacts of war on individuals, families and our culture through generations," said Graeme Dunstan of Peacebus.com, master lantern maker for the event.

"We are concerned about the way Australian history is being militarised and national identity fabricated as a product of the forges of war.

"We will acknowledge the frontier wars and the ongoing suffering of Aboriginal people, refugees and migrants, remembering that almost everyone in this land has a family story of trauma and loss through war," he said.

Singer-songwriter Jude Kelly who is a resident at the Tent Embassy, said: "The effects of war are long and enduring, and with wars come trauma and heartache. With this Lantern Vigil, we hope to rebalance the social equity of our human family and become more humane and tolerant people where words and communication are more valuable than guns and ammunition that kill and divide us."

A community initiative, the project will pay its costs with proceeds from the sale of lanterns on the night. $5 each or donation.

Further information
www.peacebus.com/AnzacLanterns
Graeme Dunstan, Peacebus.com, 0407 951 688
Johanna McBride, Musical Director, A Chorus of Women 0402 050 885
untie Jude Kelly, Aboriginal Tent Embassy, 0400 683 649

 

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