I.B.I.S (2015)

Excerpts from I.B.I.S

Act 1. Debe Idim (Good Morning, Meriam Mer language):
It is morning on the island. The community begins to stir.        

Ni Ngoe Dhe Goiga (‘You Are My Sunshine’, Ka La Lagau Ya langauge)


Tup song (Sardine Song, Ka La Lagua Ya language).

2. Waru (Turtle, Ka La Lagau Ya language)
It is egg laying season. The men are called to gather their prized turtle eggs.


Turtle Egg

Neck Tie

3. Freezer

Back in the store, what will we find in the freezer.

Cool Down

Rising Water


4. Debe Ki (Good night,
 Meriam Mer language)

It is closing time, but the community sill shines.

Re-gather Rice

Company Rice


Ooura (Kir Kir Keber Dance, Meriam Mer language)


In this e-resource, the four excerpts from the production I.B.I.S are:
Debe Idim Debe Idim is ‘Good morning’ in Ka La Lagau Ya language.

The store keeper is getting ready for the day – celebrating the sunshine and welcoming the people to the store. It’s a very social part of the day. The store provides not only food and essential goods, but a place to share stories, gossip and news. This excerpt shows all three parts of Debe Idim - Ni Ngoe Dhe Goiga (‘You Are My Sunshine’ in Ka La Lagau Ya langauge), Gathering and Tup song (Sardine Song, Ka La Lagua Ya language).

Waru  (Turtle, Ka La Lagau Ya language)

This excerpt shows part of Stalking and Turtle Egg. Fishing for turtle is a very important food gathering practice in the Torres Strait islands. Traditional hunting techniques are very sophisticated and take into account the caring and maintaining of the environment and having deep understanding about the ecosystems of the area.


In this excerpt, we see the Crayfish section. The beautiful Tropical Rock Lobster of Painted Crayfish is the species most that is most abundant in Torres Strait. Their movement is languid and smooth, despite their amour of hard chitin, which acts to protect their soft bodies.

Debe Ki (‘Good night’ in Meriam Mer language)The section Ooura is shown in this excerpt – a traditional Kir Kir Keber Dance in Meriam Mer language. The day has ended.


Traditional instruments used in the performance or music score for I.B.I.S

Warup - hourglass shaped drum made from a timber found in Papua & New Guinea. The skin of the drum is generally made of goanna, but can also be made from the skin of a goat or a snake. Beeswax is applied to alter the sound and sometimes the drum is decorated with cassowary hair. This drum is played on the ground or can also be held.

Lemut (or Thrum) – a bamboo percussion instrument (slit drum). A slit is carved into the bamboo and the drum is struck with a wooden stick. Sometimes played on a small stand or simply balanced between the legs of the player. The Lemut is often painted in the colours of the Island of the maker of the drum.

Kir Kir Keber - is a clapper made from a section of the small bamboo species called pater. The reed-like section is split longitudinally except for one end. Then a small section is removed along the inside of close to the joined end to enable the two split pieces to beat together.

Kulap or Gor – is a percussive instrument similar to a rattle. Seed pods are gathered from the beaches, cut in half and tied together with rope. This instrument is a feature of body percussive dancing.

Boo-shell – made from a large conch-like shell with a hole carved into the top of the shell. The Boo-shell is played by blowing forcefully through the hole into the shell.



To create the choreography, the music and the design elements, the creative team worked together with the dancers to create a dance theatre ‘telling’ of the powerful sense of connection to land through culture, people and place.

By spending dedicated time in the Torres Strait conducting research and talking to the people who live there, ideas start to become translated through movement, sound and imagery. The choreographer and the dancers develop a language of movement, using elements of dance that are carefully shaped to resonate the feelings, thoughts and ideas explored by the whole creative team.