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sunameke productions - best foot forward

A Who Born You? Film

Best Foot Forward

Sunameke Productions

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Odd Shoe - Red Nails shoot
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Best Foot Forward

- Film excerpt from the 'Who Born You' Production, 2010


About Who Born You:

Women born from Indigenous cultures impacted upon by Christian Missionaries and Western Lifestyle. ​It recounts the personal Kokoda Trail adventures of mixed-race modern women. Impelling audiences to question depictions of Pacific women as not unlike traditional idols now seen as objects of art in a museum or gallery.​ Intimate and thought provoking, challenging the stereotype of the Pacific Woman with flowers in her hair and a beckoning smile. ​ Delving into the contemporary world of rhythmic hips, shoe boxes, shared space and grounded feet. ​ Rocking your heart and weaving the tracks of the modern day Pacific Woman.​

Directed by Julia Gray, incorporating contemporary Pacific Dance, film and photography with original music composed and arranged by James Mangohig. In Sunameke Mangohig brings his experience from his bands Damn Moroda and Sietta with his love of electronic, soul and hip-hop. This he combines with Sunamekes vocal powerhouses in creating music combining traditional sounds with what he terms as his TRIBAL BOOM. ​

In utilising a variety of dance styles: Modern Dance and several Dance styles from the Islands of the Pacific, Sunameke deliver a distinctive dance performance that heartens discerning audiences.​

In the development of Who Born You?, Julia created a seamless show that brought together two dance pieces; 'Weaving the Map 2004' and a solo development project funded by ArtsNT 'The Centipede and her Odd Shoe'. Mentored by well-known and respected Filipina Film maker and Local Performance Artist Betchay Mondragon, bringing her immeasurable knowledge and experience to the mix that makes Sunameke.​

Screened :

- Screened as part of Who Born You? at the Darwin Entertainment Centre, December 2010 

- Screened at Pacific Dance Festival Exhibition at Mangere Arts centre, June 2017

- Screened at The 8TH Asia Pacific Triennial Of Contemporary Art (APT8) 2015


Julia Mage'au Gray, Mekeo people, Papua New Guinea/Australia b.1973 / Single-channel HD video projection: 2:26 minutes (looped), colour, sound / Purchased 2015. Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Foundation / Collection: Queensland Art Gallery / © The artist.

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Directors Note:

When we made this short film, my sister Yolanda Magaiva Gray known for her rhythmical swing donned heels and matching bag and walked the bitumen road. The band aid was a chance addition but a true reflection on the measures we take to continue walking, moving forward. 


The idea was that the camera would capture her swing and then pull out to expose the unexpected landscape of Darwin, NT Australia away from the expected 'exotic' setting. 


Making this film as part of Who Born You? commented on our need to understand two ways of being so as to put our Best Foot Forward

Filmed and edited: Julia Mageau Gray

Featuring: Yolanda Magaiva Gray

Music: James Mangohig