"David created the genre"​​
Steve Francis, 2017

The impact of a Bangarra work lies not only in the dancers' incredible performance and the arc of the choreography but the stories that envelop us through sound. Like dance, sound can communicate a myriad of ideas. It caresses our imagination and guides us through landscape and emotion and is a bedrock for cultural expression.

For a Bangarra production, sound is both a catalyst and an anchor for the choreography and helps define the storyline and, for David Page, it was an incredible form of cultural expression. A 21st century Yugumbeh man, an actor, musician and composer, David Page was an incredible storyteller, and this sat at the heart of every production he composed. For David, story was paramount, and the music paid service to this. He worked intimately with the choreographers and cultural consultants to nurture this and approached every production from a different angle, always embracing cutting edge technologies and carefully filtering them into his amalgam of ancient and modern accord.

David's spirit runs through the heart of the Bangarra songline. As we move forward, David's beats, lyrics and melodies continue to flow through our new works in reimagined ways. During the creation of Bennelong (2017), composer Steve Francis reworked a David Page melody-line which had originally been composed for Ninni (1994) and sung by La-Donna Hollingsworth - Dream Sequence Mix 1 and Mix 2. Steve asked vocal artist Yolande Brown to reinterpret this melody for Bennelong's section Wives. Likewise, during the creation of Dark Emu (2018), composer Steve Francis asked vocal artist Yolande Brown to reinterpret a David Page song for Bowls of Mourning. This song was originally sung by vocal artist Elaine Crombie for Shelter (2000) - Nesting.

An exceptional and prolific composer, David imagined and created a wealth of aural design and this inspired sound signature continues to weave its way through to the next generation of Bangarra productions.

David Page creating Patyegarang, Photography Jess Bialek, 2014
" ... there’s inspiration all around us waiting for a creative soul to embrace it and tell the stories in the only way they know how; and my way is through music."

Written by Yolande Brown

David Page (dec.)


Roy David Page was the musical heartbeat of Bangarra, composing scores for 27 of the company’s major works. His classical training gave David the foundation for composing, but it was his individuality that made him genuinely unique. A man who sang his own living culture into the present, Roy David Page stands with the most extraordinary artists this nation has produced.

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