Legends on parade

Indigenous performer Phil Walley Stack told Noongar stories to students at Fremantle Primary to help them with their item for the Fremantle Street Parade.
Indigenous performer Phil Walley Stack told Noongar stories to students at Fremantle Primary to help them with their item for the Fremantle Street Parade.

The school wanted to use their entry in the parade to recreate Fremantle’s dreamtime stories, with Mr Stark teaching the students about the local indigenous stories involving the whale, fish, seagull, pelican and turtle.

Fremantle Primary School’s Skye Badger said Mr Stark ran workshops with the children based on the dreamtime stories linked to animal totems, giving the students a deeper understanding and meaning of local Noongar culture.

‘For our entry, the whale will be the central totem in our dreamtime story because Phil shared a story from long ago when there was a great flood, a whale opened his mouth and took all the animals on the land to protect them,’ she said.

‘After the floods the whale sacrificed himself by beaching on the sand to save the other animals and the Noongar people opened his belly and all the animals came back to the lands.

‘The seagulls are spirit birds for the Noongar people and it is believed that the seagulls carry the spirits of the people towards the sun which is why seagulls are found flying along the coast between the land and the setting sun.

The Fremantle Festival Street Parade is on November 10.