The Arts

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Deadlys Nominees 2011: Female Actor of the Year

Rarriwuy Hick – Wrong Skin (play)

Rarriwuy Hick, one of the performers of ‘The Chooky Dancers’ is a natural born dancer and actor. Rarriwuy recently performed in a play directed by Nigel Jamieson, Ngurrumilmarrmiriyu (Wrong Skin), a mixture of hip-hop dance, traditional Aboriginal dance and West Side Story-type choreography, which tells the story of two lovers, teenagers from different Aboriginal groups who are not allowed to marry – a ‘wrong skin’ relationship. Rarriwuy comes from a strong dancing background as her mother Janet Munyarryun, of Arnhem Land, was a founding member of premier Australian Aboriginal dance company – Bangarra. She has set up her own production company, Black Cockatoo, along with rapper Corey Webster.

Deborah Mailman – Offspring

Deborah Mailman is one of Australia’s most popular and successful Aboriginal actors. She has worked extensively in film, television and theatre and is most recognised for her role as ‘Kelly’ in the television series The Secret Life of Us, and more recently as ‘Cherie’ in Offspring. She recently made her directorial debut with the short film Ralph. Deborah’s outstanding performances have been acknowledged with two Silver Logies for Most Outstanding Actress, a Matilda Award, a Helpmann Award for Best Supporting Actress, a Helpmann Award nomination for Best Actress, a 2007 Deadly Award for Best Female Actor and in 2003 she was named NAIDOC Person of the Year.

Marcia Langton – Here I Am

Professor Marcia Langton is both an actor and an academic. Marcia acted in the short film Night Cries: A Rural Tragedy in 1990 and was enticed out of acting retirement for the film Here I Am, playing the role of ‘Lois’. However, Marcia is best known for her academic endeavours. She is an anthropologist and geographer. Since 2000 she has been the Foundation Chair of Australian Indigenous Studies at the University of Melbourne. Marcia has made a significant contribution to Indigenous studies at three universities and to Government and non-government policy and administration throughout her career.

Pauline Whyman – Here I Am

Pauline Whyman is a well-respected actor in Australian theatre and recently played ‘Skinny’ in the Beck Cole film Here I Am. Pauline is a two-time Victorian Indigenous Performing Arts Award winning actor. Her career highlights include Stolen (Ilbijerri/Malthouse Theatre), Windmill Baby (Yirra Yaarkin), Fever & Up The Ladder (Melbourne Workers Theatre), The Birthday Party (Melbourne Theatre Company) and The Cherry Pickers, Stolen & Blacked Up (Sydney Theatre Company). In 2007, she wrote and directed an SBS-TV short film based on an event from her childhood called Back Seat.

Shai Pittman – Here I Am

Shai Pittman plays ‘Karen’ in the recent Beck Cole film Here I Am. Shai started her acting career at the age of seven as an extra on a runaway bus in an episode of Police Rescue. She has featured as Cathy Freeman’s body double in an Earth Hour commercial, posed as an athlete on the billboards and postage stamps celebrating the Athens Olympics. She has played a supporting role in television series All Saints, and her most significant work is playing opposite Chris Haywood in an AFTRS short film, the celebrated two-hander Fuse in 2005. Here I Am is her first role in a feature film.

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