Jodie Kell is a multidisciplinary creative who offers a versatile but focused skill set, balanced between creative and management qualities. She is passionate about the diversity of communities and their histories and using arts centred practices to bring these alive and relevant to modern audiences. This is apparent in her current employment as an audio preservation officer at PARADISEC digital archive as well as her doctoral studies that involves the preservation and maintenance of Indigenous culture and languages. She recently co-presented a paper, “Working With Women Only: Gendered Protocols in the Digitisation and Archiving Process” at the International Conference on Language Documentation and Conservation at the University of Hawai’I.
Jodie comes from a background as a musician and audio engineer and these practical skills underpin her approach toward creative arts projects as they give her a strong understanding of logistics. Her industry experiences ranges from coordinating emergency services at a large scale festival, managing a festival venue, and running creative music video projects in remote communities, with her best asset being her ability to work with people with open communication skills and an adaptable and flexible attitude.
Jodie has worked extensively in music and film projects. Recently she directed the Newcastle Museum’s 5th birthday celebration, an event that included live music, and film and sound projections. As part of this project she worked closely with the Miromaa Language Centre to create “Wiyalaliba”, a sound and visual performance space.
Working for Skinnyfish Music she was the Research Officer and Sound Engineer on the DVD release “Our Generation” and the Tiwi Islands Literacy Music Videos. In her role as a teacher in Maningrida and Borroloola Communities she coordinated projects such as the Bawinanga Young Women’s Language in Health Project and the development of the Maningrida CEC Music Studio and subsequent NT Indigenous Music Award in 2006. She worked closely with young women developing a music program that resulted in an all-female band recording an album and touring their music.
During her time in Northern Territory communities she was invited to participate in traditional ceremonies such as funeral and celebration ceremonies both in Borroloola and Maningrida. She was taught by Indigenous elders about kinship systems and music traditions. This was the start of a deep respect for these traditions and a desire to be a part of maintenance through educational programs and assistance with technology.
As a professional musician she has performed, recorded and toured with bands such as Blue Bottle Kiss, Cinco Locos and Yothu Yindi. As a member of the band Cinco Locos she was commissioned to compose and record music for The JJJ Breakfast Show, and also was part of the SBS Whatever Sessions. More recently she is a performing member, composer and manager for the Newcastle based band The Buzzard Mix. She also performs and has recorded with Indigenous singer/songwriter Gambirra Illume and Berias Masseque a singer/songwriter from Mozambique.
After moving from the Northern Territory to Newcastle Jodie worked for the NSW Department of Education as a music and languages teacher, becoming the chairperson of the Hunter Language Teachers Network and the coordinator of the newly established “The Last Word” foreign language film competition. She currently runs her own business teaching piano, performance skills and songwriting.
During her time in Newcastle Jodie has been involved a range of collaborative creative media projects. She was a member of RotariKlub, an internet based composition project between recording artists in Europe and Australia. She worked with local designer Sheena Roberts to develop the Ampshades, interactive sound and light installations made of reused household objects. The Ampshades were launched as part of the Twenty Twenty Vision exhibition at Art Systems Wickham and went on to show at Peats Ridge Festival. More recently she worked with young Rwandan performer Roje Ndayambaje to create a multidisciplinary performance “The Endless Journey” linked with Amnesty Australia’s “Lost Children” campaign. This work involved animation, soundscape, spoken word and sculptural installation as part of the ARTbender exhibition at The Lock Up Gallery and subsequent performances.