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Toksave – Culture Talks podcast connects communities with archives

Date: 15 November 2019

The PARADISEC team are very excited to announce the launch of the first five episodes of a new podcast series launched in Sydney yesterday. In Toksave - Culture Talks, listeners will join musicologist Jodie Kell and archivist Steven Gagau as they host a series of interviews with people who have found personal and cultural connections with collections in the archive.

Steven Gagau, Jodie Kell and Myfany Turpin - Toksave launch

Steven Gagau, Jodie Kell and Myfany Turpin introduce the Toksave podcast.

Music and Language are central to identity in Indigenous communities and the return of legacy research recordings can be an emotional and exciting rediscovery of the past, contributing to the continuation of cultural practices. The new series is an opportunity learn about the ways that language users and cultural practitioners interact with the materials in the archive, including samples of music from Rabaul (PNG) that haven't been heard for 25 years, and more. This is where the archived records of the past have life breathed back into them once again!

You can listen to the podcast here at the PARADISEC website, or subscribe on your mobile phone via Apple podcasts, or on your desktop via iTunes – just search for 'Toksave'.

Steven Gagau and Grace Hull launch Toksave podcast

Trobriand Islander Grace Hull helps to launch the Toksave podcast.

The first five episodes already released include:

  • Trobriand Islands, PNG: Our Culture is Just a Heartbeat, where Grace Hull joins Jodie and Steven to talk about the RL1 collection recorded by Ralph Lawton in the Trobriand Islands, off the east coast of Papua New Guinea.
  • Rabaul, PNG: The Researcher and the Tolai. When Sydney Conservatorium Associate Professor Michael Webb met Steven Gagau, they quickly realised they had Tolai connections and Tok Pisin language in common.
  • Rabaul, PNG: The Music. Following on from Episode 2, this podcast is a kind of blindfold test as we listen to a range of musical examples Steven Gagau has chosen from the MW6 collection, recordings musicologist Michael Webb has not heard for 25 years. 
  • Papunya, Australia: Just like a storybook. We are transported to the Western Desert of Central Australia as Pintupi-Luritja woman Linda Tjungkata Anderson listens to her father Nosepeg Tjupurrula singing songs from the Wanji Wanji public song set recorded by musicologist Professor Richard Moyle in 1976. 
  • Paama, Vanuatu: This is gold to me. Tom Johnny Obed is a Paamese man living in Sydney. He is an associate of Steven Gagau through the Wantok Association of Sydney, a representative body for Melanesian people living here.

Tom Johnny Obed and Jodie Kell at Toksave launch
Tom Johnny Obed and Jodie Kell.

Professor Neal Peres da Costa
Professor Neal Peres da Costa 

The Conservatorium's Barayagal choir open proceedings.

The Conservatorium's Barayagal choir open proceedings.

Dancers at the Toksave podcast launch
Dancers Ayeesha Ash and Emele Ugavule (foreground) from Black Birds Creative Arts perform at the ceremony. 
(All photos by Dr Julia Colleen Miller)



  • Australian Government
  • The University of Queensland
  • Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Western Sydney University