Djidi Djidi Aboriginal School Choir

In 2022, Aboriginal students from the Djidi Djidi Aboriginal School choir were invited to record the chorus to a song written to accompany a children’s book. The book was written in the south-western dialect of the Noongar language and as the children were already familiar with the Noongar words used in the chorus, they were able to pick up the melody with just a few practises. The book and song, entitled ‘Djerap Wardandi Boodja-k’ – Birds on Wardandi Country – were written by Noongar song writer and artist, Victoria Coyne and have just been released in April 2023.

The words of the song are taken from the text of the book so that children can learn the words in a way that is fun way and easy to remember. The text was translated with the assistance of Noongar language specialist and former Djidi Djidi teacher, Charmaine Councillor. The book was part of an art project and includes paintings and photographs of birds and country. The Project was a partnership between the Noongar Art Program at the Bunbury Regional Art Gallery and Wardandi Miya-k Kaadadjiny Aboriginal Corporation, and the recording of the song was funded by Regional Arts WA.

The soundtrack produced in this project is available in the form of a CD. The second track on the CD is a spoken version of the book by Charmaine Councillor to assist with pronunciation and word recognition. The third track is an interview with Harvey Elder, Lesley Ugle from the Harvey Community Radio and provides background information to the book and song. The song can be found on Soundcloud and will soon be released on other online formats. The book is available to schools through the Wardandi Miya-k Kaadadjiny Aboriginal Corporation.