For 44 years, Griffin Theatre Company has celebrated the Australian voice. And there is no Australian voice more fundamental to our nation’s identity than that of its First Peoples.
The storytelling of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities has taken place on this continent for over 60,000 years and forms an integral part of First Nations’ engagement with Country, Community, and Lore. At Griffin we work alongside First Nations artists, providing a platform for the continuation of this storytelling tradition. As a company started by settlers to this land, our guiding principle is that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander storytellers should be afforded the right of self-determination over their own work and creation, in every way possible.
These principles are echoed in the design of the Voice. This advisory body has been called for by Indigenous communities, as part of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. It has been co-designed by Indigenous communities. It aims to ensure Australia’s First Peoples have a louder, more resounding voice on matters of concern to their own people – offering an important step on a larger journey towards the co-existence of sovereignty and truth-telling.
As such, the principles and design of the Voice are wholly supported by the staff and Board of Griffin. We support the Voice and encourage our collaborators and audiences to – like us – vote YES.
We also recognise that Australia’s First Peoples communities are made up of many differing voices. There are artists, audiences, and wider communities connected to Griffin who will have varying opinions in relation to this National Referendum. We encourage knowledge-seeking, empathy, and respect in any debate on this issue, recognising that this is a difficult and painful process for many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.