Kankawa Nagarra (Olive Knight) International Women's Day
On Friday, March 8, 2024, Rosemount Hotel is set to host a captivating International Women's Day event, featuring the extraordinary talents of Kankawa Nagarra, widely known as Olive Knight. The celebration will kick off at 4:00 PM, offering a unique opportunity for attendees to immerse themselves in the powerful narratives and soulful tunes that Olive Knight has woven throughout her illustrious career.
Hailing from the Walmatjarri community as a respected Elder, Olive Knight is not only an internationally acclaimed blues and gospel singer-songwriter but also an accomplished teacher, mentor, human rights advocate, and political activist. Her remarkable journey began with the development of the Walmatjarri dictionary in the 1960s, and she has since dedicated her life to supporting research on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) within the Indigenous community, tirelessly working to raise awareness about alcohol abuse.
Growing up amidst the Gooniyandi and Walmatjarri peoples of northwestern Australia, Olive faced adversity from the very day of her birth. Born to a half-caste father, she narrowly escaped a customary fate that befell halfblood children in her community, thanks to the intervention of an elder. Overcoming challenges, she forged her own path, moving from mission to mission before finding love and purpose alongside her husband, Jim, a passionate advocate for Indigenous rights.
Following Jim's passing, Olive's singing and songwriting became a source of solace and opportunity. From her early days in mission gospel choirs to her exploration of country western music, blues, and rock 'n' roll, Olive's talent as a singer attracted collaborations with other artists who sought her unique voice and ability to translate songs into her traditional language.
In 2011, Olive Knight was invited to join Hugh Jackman's Back on Broadway production, marking a significant milestone in her illustrious career. Her spirit and compassion continue to inspire as she openly shares her experiences about the challenges of adopting young children in her mature years, and how she hopes to bring greater awareness of and prevention efforts to substance abuse, particularly fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, within Indigenous communities in Australia. In 2023 Kankawa recorded a stripped back album with just herself and a guitar on country, the album is expected to be released in late 2023.
Playing live with her band in the famous Rosemont Hotel Backyard, this is a Free Entry event you won't want to miss, especially if you're a Country/Blues fan!