April 8 2021

By Bronwen Largier

Australia’s most iconic train journey will take Parrtjima – A Festival of Light right through Australia’s Red Centre, with three carriages of The Ghan wrapped in an artwork by Aboriginal artist Chantelle Mulladad called Crossroads.

Like The Ghan itself, Crossroads is about travelling cross country on a journey.

Inside the train, one of the carriages will host an immersive installation of a light show from the 2019 Parrtjima festival. ‘The Language of Country – Angkentye Apmere-kenhe’ celebrates the beauty, uniqueness and survival of the ancient landscape.

Parrtjima, owned by the Northern Territory Major Events Company and organised in collaboration with AGB Events, will take place in Alice Springs April 9-18.

“We are always looking for new ways to expand the reach of the annual Parrtjima program,” said AGB Events CEO Anthony Bastic.

“This year we are really excited to work with Tourism NT and the Ghan to provide a ‘taste of Parrtjima’ installation on the train.

“This is a new initiative and particularly significant given the Ghan’s importance to Central Australia. There’s also a great synergy with the artwork Crossroads by Chantelle Mulladad which we’ve utilised in this installation and also the Merging Kultcha installation at the Alice Springs Desert Park.

“In developing creative concepts like this it reminds us of the importance in connecting people. On this occasion, by involving the Ghan with Parrtjima, we’re highlighting pathways and moving forward which ties in with the ‘Future Kultcha’ theme for Parrtjima 2021.”

According to CEO of Northern Territory Major Events Company Tim Watsford thousands of interstate visitors are expected to attend the festival this year.

“Parrtjima is a must-do on the national calendar of events, and we are excited to welcome large numbers of visitors from across the country who will help support the Central Australia economy by spending money in the region,” said Watsford.

“Parrtjima is the only authentic Aboriginal light festival of its kind, and we’re thrilled to be sharing the awe-inspiring magic of this iconic event with even more people across Australia this year.”