live shows across Australia in 2019
participating students in 2019
schools involved last year
established in

Great Stories Inspire Change

Great Stories can open hearts and minds and inspire change. Wakakirri is a Story-Dance festival where schools aim to do just that! Created in 1992 Wakakirri is Australia’s largest national performing arts event for schools. Does your school have a story to tell? It’s time to get involved!

Wakakirri Challenge

The Aboriginal word Wakakirri means ‘to dance a story’. Each year hundreds of schools across Australia create and perform Story-Dances for Wakakirri that reflect students’ thoughts, ideas and aspirations.

What’s a Story-Dance?

A Wakakirri Story-Dance is a 3-7 minute performance by a group of students that theatrically tells a story using a combination of dancing, creative movement and acting to pre-recorded music.

Tell Any Story

Your performance must tell a story but the possibilities are endless! Environmental, social, cultural, health, historical & reconciliation stories are all popular with schools. Incorporate the annual signature item as a fun option!

Inclusivity & diversity

Wakakirri is open to ALL students from Primary, Secondary and Dance schools nationally. Students with all levels of experience can participate. An emphasis is also placed on creative movement and drama rather than technical dance.

Wakakirri Live

Performing in Wakakirri Live is an experience students never forget. Schools spend Show Day rehearsing and meeting other schools and that same night walk the Red Carpet with the Panel Reps and perform on the big stage. Every schools’ story is filmed for Wakakirri TV as part of the search for ‘Story of the Year’.

Wakakirri Video

Schools that are too far away from a Wakakirri live venue can send their entry in by video. Wakakirri Video takes all the traditional aspects of a Wakakirri performance and incorporates them into a creatively filmed and edited end product!

Wakakirri is for Every School in Australia

Outcomes and Impact

Outcomes include increased confidence, resilience, student engagement, teamwork, pride, friendships, social awareness & cross cultural appreciation. Secondary students can also explore career pathways and develop career aspirations.

Get Started with Best Start

The Wakakirri Best Start Program is the easiest way to begin or continue your Wakakirri journey. Our specialist Facilitator will visit your school to assist with your story, choreography and soundtrack and lead students in 12 x 1 hour rehearsals.

Creative! Not Expensive!

Wakakirri is creative, not expensive! Our programs have low entry costs, see the Get Involved page for details on fees and assistance for disadvantaged schools. Emphasis is on creative storytelling, not expensive and extravagant productions.

Not For Profit

The Wakakirri Story-Dance Association Incorporated (WSDAI) is a Not For Profit organisation (since 2004). The WSDAI is governed by a voluntary Committee comprising individuals from business, the arts and education sectors.

Subsidies for schools

The Wakakirri Donation Program was established to encourage and assist disadvantaged schools to participate in Wakakirri. One hundred percent of donations received into this program are allocated to schools in need.

How can I get involved?

Interested in participating in the 2021 Wakakirri Challenge? Check out the Fast Facts on the Get Involved page of our website. Then, contact our friendly team using the form at the bottom of the Get Involved page.
When I bump into past TWPS students, they always say what amazing memories they have of their time in Wakakirri. I love that we can help create happy experiences for young Australians and that it is inclusive of all students. I can’t wait to see what the students do with our story next year.
Karyn Johnson, Thornleigh West Public School (NSW)
Taking part in Wakakirri allows students to express their creativity and display their individual talents. They learn how to communicate a story through dance. They develop collective responsibility, collaboration and teamwork.
Georgia Sellars, Kiama Public School (NSW)
Performing arts are now more important than ever before. What Wakakirri celebrates is the power of telling stories in the universal language of music and dance for our emotional wellness. I have been blown away by the creativity and talent in student’s performances. I can’t wait for the next show - viva Wakakirri!
Pasi Sahlberg - Professor of Education, University of NSW
I truly appreciate the fantastic opportunity you provide for our students to share stories relevant to them and their communities through this event.
Lisa Rodgers, Director General, Department of Education WA
The reason Traralgon College has had such a long standing relationship with Wakakirri is that the program itself offers an opportunity for our disadvantaged kids to be involved in an arts program, it gives the kids a positive connection to school and provides a safe/welcoming opportunity for them to socialise with peers.
Toni Callander, Traralgon College (VIC)
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THE WAKAKIRRI LIVE SEASON IS BACK FOR 2021Read more about our Covid-19 friendly live shows