Tunnel No 5 Program Launch - Highly Strung + Bulunu Milkarri (short)

Tunnel No 5: Festival of Underground Music is a series of underground concerts staged within Darwin’s haunting WWII Oil Storage Tunnels. Directed by Anne Norman and Netanela Mizrahi, the project combines exceptional musical talent from across Australia to deliver new and culturally diverse sound-scapes, responding to the reverberant tunnel itself, surprising the audience and performers alike. All are welcome to the Program Launch of Tunnel No 5 at Deckchair Cinema, which will feature a live performance from members of Darwin’s own Ad Hoc Ensemble & Sitar Master Kabita Ghosh in the intermission between short songlines doco Bulunu Milkarri and feature film Highly Strung.

7.15pm Bulunu Milkarri (25 min): The Bulunu songline belongs to the Djambarrpuyŋu clan of the Yolŋu Nation of north east Arnhem Land. Bulunu is the south east cloud formations that bring the rains that replenish the land and provide the time of abundance in food from the land and the sea. Milkarri is the women‘s crying songs that are used in funerals to sing the spirits back to their ancestral homelands. The Bulunu Milkarri reminds people that as well as appreciation for Bulunu replenishing the land, it is also about replenishing the spirit within and remembering loved ones passed.

This songline is not being sufficiently being passed on to younger women; only a small handful of elderly women hold this knowledge. Filmed on location in Ban’thula homeland and in Darwin, the film follows Director, Sylvia Nulpinditj, on the quest for her and her sisters to learn to sing Bulunu Milkarri and to creatively portray the concepts of this deep and rich bed of interlinking cycles of death, life and everything in between that are represented in Bulunu Milkarri.

Highly Strung (90 min): A story of passion...of obsession...and possession. A journey into a rarefied world of elusive tones evoked by horsehair on catgut, of investors lured to spend millions on unique instruments. The deadly sins of lust, jealousy and greed jostle with the purity of philanthropy and sonic perfection. A duel of tension and harmony in a quartet of youthful virtuosi expanding their skills on a clutch of rare Guadagninis. An exploration of the mystery and the lost, delicate art of constructing these robust masterpieces. Exquisite imagery will illuminate a complex history of enduring instruments and their temporary custodians. And then there's the music!
Watch Trailer

“Music lovers will find plenty to enjoy in this intriguing film.”

David Stratton - The Australian

“Fascinating, surprisingly absorbing documentary about the formation of the new Australian String Quartet (...) But what starts out as a straightforward doco morphs into Spinal Tap With Strings when personality differences threaten to break up the band.”

Jim Schembri - 3AW

Show Time(s)

Add to Calendar 7:15pm,
Tuesday 8 August
Deckchair Cinema

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Scott Hicks



Running Time

120 minutes


Country of Origin