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A Festival in Light: Get Ready For The NT's Parrtjima In April

Parrtjima takes place from 9-18 April 2021 in the cultural heart of Australia, Alice Spring, and boasts a program bursting with world-class acts.

Parrtjima takes place from 9-18 April 2021 in the cultural heart of Australia, Alice Spring, and boasts a program bursting with world-class acts.

The full 2021 program for Parrtjima – A Festival in Light is out and features an impressive host of high-calibre acts to perform at the iconic free event in Alice Springs next month.

Joining previously announced acts Electric Fields and Casey Donovan on the music program this year is an all-star line up of Australian artists including Miiesha, MusicNT’s Divas, Jimblah, Bow and Arrow, Dobby, OKA, Ziggy Ramo and Shellie Morris.

Shaping up to be bigger and better than ever, Parrtjima 2021 will see an exciting new show for the MacDonnell Ranges, large-scale light installations, artworks, performances, interactive workshops, music, films and talks woven into the program as part of the 2021 theme ‘Future

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Rhyan Clapham, aka Dobby

2021 Parrtjima Curator Rhoda Roberts AO said this year’s theme ‘Future Kultcha’ is all about ensuring forward-thinking of the philosophers, the artists and the dreamers.

“Enabling young guest curators such as Electric Fields and Rhyan Clapham, aka Dobby, to play a part in this year’s program gives a distinct voice of the next generation and their connection to the ancient footprints of their ancestors,” she said.

“When you combine the masters with the emerging, you see a sense of a holistic culture and knowledge that is relevant to everyone in the 21st century.”

Rhoda Roberts AO, 2021 Parrtjima Curator


Event attendees can also hear from a range of critically-acclaimed speakers as part of the talks program. They include award-winning writer Bruce Pascoe, artists Jungala Kriss and Raymond Walters Japanangka, and Professor Marcia Langton AM to name a few.

Northern Territory Major Events Company CEO Tim Watsford said this year’s five-star program was guaranteed to attract crowds from all over Australia.

“Parrtjima is a must-do for any traveller’s bucket list and I look forward to welcoming thousands of visitors to the heart of Australia for this iconic festival in light.”

Tim Watsford, Northern Territory Major Events Company CEO

Other 2021 program highlights include a fabric and textiles workshop hosted by National Indigenous Fashion Awards Director Nina Fitzgerald, karrbushfood tastings, a wooden carvings masterclass, painting workshops, metal sculpture workshops and more.

Maruku Arts Workshop

Parrtjima has expanded over three event precincts this year, with the Araluen Arts Centre hosting parts of the 2021 program along with Alice Springs Desert Park and Todd Mall.

Children’s activities and live music provided by local DJs will feature on the nightly program, and the Araluen Arts Centre will host a film program and Araluen curator tours.

Films include 1950s classic Jedda, coming-of-age comedy Bran Nue Dae featuring Jessica Mauboy and Aboriginal Rules, a documentary on the role Aussie Rules plays in a remote Territory community.


Parrtjima is the only authentic light Aboriginal festival of its kind, showcasing the oldest continuous culture on earth through the newest technology. The packed program runs alongside nightly light shows on the 300-million-year-old natural canvas of the MacDonnell Ranges.

Parrtjima is delivered by the Northern Territory Government through Northern Territory Major Events Company (NTMEC) and produced by creative directors AGB Events.

Parrtjima takes place from 9-18 April 2021 in Alice Springs.

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