Culture / People

A list of NAIDOC Week events to attend across the country

naidoc week 2023 event

Celebrated annually on the first week of July, NAIDOC Week is a chance to spotlight the culture, history and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It's a time of truth-telling, of joy, of reflection and, in line with the NAIDOC Week theme for 2023, a week to honour the elders in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. For Our Elders means not only do we pay homage to community leaders and elders for their strength and activism, but for upholding tradition, nurturing younger generations and continuing to share their knowledge and stories. Taking place from 2–9 July 2023, with events spanning the entire week, below we round up a non-exhaustive event list of things to do during NAIDOC Week across the country.


NAIDOC Up Late: Trailblazers: From 1-10pm on July 1, The Cutaway in Barangaroo will spotlight Blak Excellence with a free festival filled with music, culture and community.  Luke Currie Richardson and Ghenoa Gela will host, there will be food by Antico Wood Fire Pizza, a basketball tournament, and life performances from BARKAA, B Wise, A. Girl, Nooky, Mau Power and more.

Carriageworks Nights NAIDOCIn keeping with its current Thursday night events program, Carriageworks will put on an evening led by First Nations musicians and poets, including the likes of Sycco, Dobby, Kirli Saunders and Jazz Money.

NAIDOC Art and Culture at the Maritime MuseumFor the entirety of NAIDOC Week, the Maritime Museum will host an art exhibition showcasing First Nations body of works from Zenadth Kes, Alick Tipoti, as well as a series of portraits of Indigenous servicemen and women by Belinda Mason.

Blak Lens Photo Exhibition: From July 1 – July 9, Civic Connector in Darling Quarter will shine a light on emerging and aspiring Blak photographers and videographers Cole BaxterColleen RavenMandy Smith and Michael Jalaru.

National Indigenous Art Fair: Taking place across the first weekend of NAIDOC Week, the National Indigenous Art Fair will return to Gadigal Land at The Rocks as an ethical marketplace. There'll be more than 50 stallholders from remote Art Centres, as well as Sydney's Blak Market where you can purchase art, handmade jewellery, homewares, food and more. All proceeds go directly back to the artist and First Nations communities.

You Can Go Now screening: On July 2 and 9, the Museum of Contemporary Art will be screening Larissa Behrendt's film You Can Go Nowwhich charts 50 years of Richard Bell's art and activism.

Powerhouse Late: Re-RightOn July 6, Powerhouse will present its own celebrations for NAIDOC Week, comprising of a welcome ceremony from Nana Miss Koori and the Rainbow Serpent, a poetry reading by Jazz Money, a performance by Brolga Dance Academy, a free sausage sizzle and a Blak Market with stalls from Nungala Creative, Malima, Blaq Aboriginal Corporation and Native Foodways.



Electric Fields and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra: On July 8, Electric Fields return to Hamer Hall for a special encore performance with MSO, who will perform the duo’s work with their music, including some new songs for this performance, arranged for orchestra by Alex Turley, MSO 2022 Cybec Young Composer in Residence.

Shadow Spirit exhibitionAs part of Rising Festival and presented by Metro Trains Melbourne, curator Kimberley Moulton has arranged a new First Peoples exhibition in Flinders Street Station’s abandoned rooms. The exhibition runs until July 30.

Aretha: A Love Letter to the Queen of SoulSettle in for an onstage homage to Aretha Franklin, serving as a musical memoir as enacted by a host of First Nations performers and women of colour including Montaigne, Emma Donovan, Thandi Phoenix, Thndo, and Ursula Yovich.



NAIDOC Week at ARC CinemaThe National Film and Sound Archive of Australia is hosting a series of movie screenings in celebration of NAIDOC Week. Some of these titles include Warwick Thornton's recent Cannes breakout The New Boy, starring Cate Blanchett, Aswan Reid, Deborah Mailman and Wayne Blair, as well as Thornton's Samson & Delilah. Also included in the lineup is Rachel Perkin's formative film, Radiance, and Lousy Little Sixpence from Alec Morgan and Gerry Bostock.



Nragi Muthar/The Deadly Nannas: On July 2 and 9, head to South Australian Museum to hear a free live performance from Nragi Muthar/The Deadly Nannas sing in the Ngarrindjeri language in line with this year's For Our Elders theme.

NAIDOC March and Family Fun DayOn July 7, from 11am–3.30pm, gather your loved ones and march from Tarntanyangga to Parliament House. From Tarntanyangga, celebrations will ensure with over 40 stall holders.

Yothu YindiAs part of Illuminate Adelaide, Yothu Yindi will perform at Hindley Street Music Hall on July 7.



NAIDOC Week at AGWAArt Gallery of Western Australia are hosting a series of workshops, readings and events to celebrate NAIDOC Week. From a Little Boorloo Dance Workshop to Art Making Workshop with Beananging Kwuurt Institute First Nations artists.

Boorloo NAIDOC BallThere's still time left to secure tickets to the annual Boorloo NAIDOC Ball on July 15 at the Crown Ballroom.

NAIDOC Week at Western Australian MuseumCelebrate Nyoongar culture through a lesson on native plants and foods with Goldfields Aboriginal Community Services Ranger Team, a weaving workshop with Sharyn Egan and Nyumbi dance performances.



Stories from our EldersVisit NT Library on July 7 for an event that spotlights a collection of stories from some of the Top End’s most revered First Nations Elders as told through family member recollections and oral history recordings.

The New Boy screening: Anglicare NT in partnership with Following In Their Footsteps brings a free screening of The New Boy to Darwin and Palmerston on July 6.

Watch This Space Zine FairThe Mparntwe gallery is hosting its annual zine fair on July 14-15.



NAIDOC Week Film Showcase: For NAIDOC Week, Reconciliation Tasmania is touring the film Ablaze. The film follows Yorta Yorta man, opera singer and Senior Lecturer in and Indigenous Arts and Culture at the Victorian College of the Arts, Tiriki Onus, on a journey to discover if his grandfather Bill Onus was the first Aboriginal filmmaker. Bill was an entrepreneur, performer and activist, being particularly active during the 1967 Referendum.

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Image: Kirli Saunders supplied by Carriageworks