NITV / SBS: Always Was Always Will Be 2024

Highlights across annual curated week include WugulOra Morning Ceremony, Her Name is Nanny Nellie, and Leah Purcell’s The Drover’s Wife.

SBS / NITV has scheduled its annual week of Always Was Always Will Be programming, explores the history of First Nations peoples.

In 2024, the line-up includes new documentary Her Name is Nanny Nellie, Leah Purcell’s award-winning film The Drover’s Wife and special updates from NITV News on January 26, culminating in a special one-hour bulletin at 5.30pm.

Tanya Denning-Orman, a proud Birri and Guugu Yimidhirr woman and SBS Director of Indigenous Content, said: “Every year, in the lead up to and on January 26, the whole of the SBS network – with NITV as its heart – comes together to present a special line-up of programming and content across our platforms and in more than 60 languages, which celebrates the strength, beauty and power of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, and the resilience and achievements of First Nations peoples.

“This year, we are excited to be providing more new programming on January 26 including our live broadcast of the WugulOra morning ceremony from Barangaroo, and a celebration of Blak music with Sounds of Solidarity during the day, adding to the collection of premieres and program encores inviting all Australians to connect, engage and reflect throughout the week.”

Marissa McDowell, a proud Wiradyuri woman and NITV’s Head of Commissions, said: “NITV provides a space in mainstream media that highlights First Nations peoples’ voices in Australia today. In Her Name is Nanny Nellie, director Daniel King and his mother Irene Ridgeway tell a deeply personal story about their family history, which has global consequences for colonial museum collections everywhere.

“First Nations peoples are continuing to share their stories to create positive change and this documentary is no exception.”

Screen Australia’s Director of Content Grainne Brunsdon said, “Screen Australia is immensely proud to have supported Her Name is Nanny Nellie. Powerful and poignant, this documentary offers audiences the rare privilege of bearing witness to a family reclaiming their history. It is imperative that we continue to champion and provide a platform for First Nations voices and storytelling – to not only honour the enduring spirit of our First Nations people, but to also deepen our collective understanding of our nation’s rich cultural heritage.”

VicScreen CEO, Caroline Pitcher said, “We are proud to support this incredibly moving documentary, that follows a great granddaughter’s quest to honour her ancestors and reclaim their life stories. Her Name is Nanny Nellie not only unearths a powerful tale of family history, but recasts how First Peoples are represented in Australia’s public history.”

Sunday January 21

Her Name is Nanny Nellie
Premiering Sunday 21 January at 8.30pm on NITV and SBS. Also available on SBS On Demand.
This feature-length documentary tells the story of a trio of nameless statues buried in the archives of the Australian Museum which trigger a great granddaughter’s journey to rewrite how Aboriginal people are represented in Australia’s public history. Her Name is Nanny Nellie offers a profound personal window into a national story, with global consequences for colonial museum collections everywhere.

Monday January 22

Living Black
Monday 22 January at 8.40pm on NITV
Walkley award-winning journalist and executive producer Karla Grant presents a special episode examining how Australia found itself voting on a Referendum for a Voice to Parliament six years after the concept was originally rejected by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Now in the wake of referendum’s defeat, Karla takes a look back at how we reached this historic result and asks, was this referendum never meant to happen?

Thursday January 25

The Drover’s Wife
Thursday 25 January at 8.30pm on NITV and on SBS World Movies on Saturday 27 January at 8.30pm.
Leah Purcell’s award-winning film is Australia’s first feature film with an Indigenous woman writing, directing and performing the lead role. Molly Johnson’s husband is away droving sheep, leaving her alone to care for their four children in the remote Snowy Mountains. Despite being heavily pregnant, Molly keeps various threats, from nature and other people, at bay. But when Yadaka, an Aboriginal man on the run from white law enforcement, intrudes on the sanctuary she has carved out, the brutal hardships and secrets that have followed them both throughout their lives must be confronted.

Friday January 26

WugulOra Morning Ceremony
From 7.30am, NITV’s broadcast of WugulOra, which means ‘one mob’, is hosted by proud Jerrinja and Wandi Wandiaan woman Shahni Wellington (Big Mob Brekky, First Nations Arts Awards) and proud Wuthathi and Meriam man John Paul Janke (The Point, Sunrise Ceremony). Taking place at Barangaroo Reserve, the ceremony is a sacred and reflective start to January 26, celebrating Aboriginal cultures with special performances by singers and dancers, and providing a reminder that First Nations peoples are the foundation of Australia’s story and caretakers of the world’s oldest continuous living culture.

Sounds of Solidarity
At 2.30pm, NITV brings Australians the best in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander music with Sounds of Solidarity, a program celebrating the powerful and enduring legacy of First Nations music and cultures by showcasing iconic music videos, interspersed with news updates. Sounds of Solidarity is hosted by proud Wiradjuri and Western Arrernte woman, Executive Producer and Presenter of NITV Radio, Lowanna Grant, proud Yuin and Thunghutti man, rapper and presenter Nooky and Australian Indigenous Butchulla Songman Fred Leone.

Friday January 26 with two-minute updates hourly from 2pm and a one-hour bulletin from 5.30pm.
Coverage and updates across broadcast and digital platforms provide ongoing reporting and insight on the day’s events from every state and territory, led by NITV News presenter and Head of Indigenous News and Current Affairs, Natalie Ahmat, a proud Mudburra and Wagadagum woman. The one-hour program will look at how communities across the country are marking the day and will be co-hosted by John Paul Janke. Two-minute bulletins air hourly on NITV from 2pm, culminating in a news program, Day 26 – NITV News, premiering at 5.30pm and simulcast on SBS. The program will look at how communities across the country are marking the day.

SBS On Demand will feature a curated Always Was, Always Will Be collection of programming. SBS Food will air a selection of programs throughout the day, celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures through cuisine with episodes of The Cook Up with Adam Liaw and Strait to the Plate. From 12.15pm, SBS VICELAND will air Sing About This Country.

Leave a Reply