She is a powerful Yorta Yorta winyarr, and a storyteller, composer, director, producer, musician and soundscape designer. Her innovative music speaks to Blak justice and sovereignty. Using the double-bass and sound samples from Country, with humour and integrity, Allara weaves textures for healing in her work “I am Sovereign, I am Free”.
"This playlist represents a glimpse of the music being created across so-called-Victoria. Before this place was ever a goldfield… before it was Upside-down Country, it was, and always will be, Djaara Dja.
I grew up in Bendigo, then moved to Melbourne for 10 years. Recognition of traditional owners has become much more prevalent during that time. When I recently moved back to Bendigo in 2021, I realised I’m a guest where I grew up. It's been an interesting journey because I didn't really think about it before my time on Kulin Country. This collection of songs connects me to whatever home is, wherever that is, as a Yorta Yorta person having never lived on-Country. I hope you enjoy listening to them as much as I do and hope they take you where you need to go."
Allara shares her top spots in and around Bendigo.
1. Bridgewater Swimming Hole
This is a beautiful swimming hole on the Loddon River, about 30 minutes outside of Bendigo where I’ve been back living the past 18 months. It’s my favorite spot to pop out for a dip on a scorching summer day.
2. Castlemaine Theatre Royal
An old heritage building from the time of early invasion, the Castlemaine Theatre Royal is magnificent. I had the privilege to play here as part of the Castlemaine State Festival at the end of 2021. The audience was very generous as this was one of the first gigs I played coming out of lockdown it was a hard one for me. I recently saw Komang and Surprise Chef play there, they nailed it!
3. Dunolly Bakery
This is one super cute, classic country bakery. I grew up in Bendigo and have fond memories that include getting hedgehogs and all kinds of yummy slices and sandwiches from the Huntly Baker, around the corner from where I went to primary school. The food at Dunolly bakery was nostalgic, delicious and the staff were very charismatic.
4. One Tree Hill Lookout (Spring Gully)
As part of the Greater Bendigo National Park, there are many tracks up to the lookout and it can be a difficult walk, if you’re into that kinda thing. I’ve trekked up there with Mum a few times, it’s a stunning view and I highly recommend it even though Mum’s pace usually leaves me with shin splints.
5. Hepburn Mineral Springs Reserve
I remember when I was young my Dad took my sister and I here on a little road trip, leaving from Bendigo. I haven’t been back since but have been meaning to make it to the Hepburn Bathhouse and Spa. When I was a kid the playground was so awesome AND it’s still there, same goes for the original mineral spring pump built in 1865, you can fill up your water bottles there, although I don't really like the taste of the water through the ancient pipes!