The Tubowgule festival completed a cycle that began with the Awakening Ceremony for the first Olympic Arts Festival in 1997. Tubowgule, pronounced tie-bah-gool, means 'meeting of the waters' in the Eora language of the Sydney basin. Directed by Stephen Page and Rhoda Roberts, Tubowgule ushered in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Arts Festival on 18 August 2000, with dawn, noon and dusk ceremonies.
The ceremony began at dawn at Congwong Bay Beach, La Perouse, with traditional dance, music, song and the ceremonial lighting of a water sculpture. The noon ceremony at the Botanical Gardens, Sydney, once a place of male initiation for the Kayimai (or Manly) people, involved dance, body painting, storytelling and sculpture. At dusk on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House at Bennelong Point, Bangarra Dance Theatre performed The meeting of the waters.
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