Darebin’s Multi-Arts Festival FUSE responds to Melbourne’s COVID restrictions

Darebin-FUSE-The-Market-Record-Dan-Koop-Katerina-Kokkinos-Kennedy-photo-by-Max-MilneAs Melbourne faces ongoing restrictions regarding public space, FUSE, Darebin City Council’s multi-arts festival, is taking measures to promote good health and limit the impacts of coronavirus in our community.

This includes the reorganisation of the FUSE SPRING 2021 festival. Although FUSE will not be able to hold in-person events, the festival will still proceed in a digital and online capacity, known as FUSE Digital.

FUSE recognises that artists and creative industries need to mourn the current global situation and the havoc it has wreaked on the arts. However, FUSE and Darebin City Council are committed to finding new and innovative ways to move beyond that moment of grief, and to forge new and positive connections with artists and audiences.

2021 FUSE Digital Highlights include:
Launching FUSE Spring 2021 on Saturday 4th September, Ganbu Gulin is a culturally-inclusive event that celebrates and recognises First Nations peoples, and invites all residents, old and new, to be officially welcomed onto Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Country.

At 2.00pm, following a Welcome to Country by a Wurundjeri Traditional Owner, Ganbu Gulin (One Mob), the documentary will be available to view online for the duration of the festival. This powerful documentary is about how Darebin’s Aboriginal Advisory Committee led the Change the Date campaign in Darebin creating a powerful new ritual to Welcome all Darebin Citizens to Country.

The Market Record is a solo audio journey using a smartphone or printed instructions. It involves an audio-guided trip to Preston Market’s Food Hall for your weekly shop. Locals can participate during Lockdown provided they are permitted to travel to the market and follow the latest health advice. Solo tour hours include: Friday 17th – Sunday 19th September. Bookings required.

Taking place on Thursday 9th September online at 6.00pm, Spaced is a cry for solidarity between members of the disability community and those who identify as Deaf. Tackling all the forbidden subjects – religion, advocacy and curing disabilities.

It asks questions like “does art makes you mentally ill?” or “do you have to be mentally ill to make art?” Featuring live performance, visual art, dance, and the printed word, Spaced brings together emerging and established artists with different experiences of disability. The event is Auslan interpreted and captioned.

We would like to convey that the decision to cancel in-person events was not taken lightly. However, now is the time to look after ourselves and each other as we work together across the community to promote good health, patience and compassion in order to mitigate the ongoing impact of the pandemic. We hope you enjoy FUSE Digital.

The 2021 FUSE Digital Festival runs 4 – 17 September. For more information and full program, visit: www.fusedarebin.com.au for details. More updates to be announced shortly.

Image: Dan Koop & Katerina Kokkinos-Kennedy present The Market Record – photo by Max Milne