State Funeral Service for Uncle Jack Charles

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Uncle Jack Charles

A State Funeral Service to honour and celebrate the life of Uncle Jack Charles was held on 18 October 2022 at Hamer Hall.

Uncle Jack Charles was a proud Boon Wurrung, Dja Dja Wurrung, Woiwurrung and Taungurung man. He was also a highly respected Elder, actor, musician, potter, and gifted performer.

Family, friends and members of the broader Victorian Aboriginal community gathered to pay tribute to Uncle Jack’s contributions to the arts and his advocacy for First Peoples.

Prior to the Service, a Smoking Ceremony was held on the Arts Centre Melbourne lawn featuring the Koorie Youth Will Shake Spears, Djirri Djirri Dancers and Murrundaya Yepengna Dancers.

The Service commenced with a Welcome to Country from Wurundjeri Elder Uncle Colin Hunter Jnr, followed by a welcome from hosts Frankie Mazzone and Ari Maza Long.

The Honourable Colin Brooks MP, Minister for Child Protection and Family Services, Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, and acting Minister for Treaty and First Peoples provided an address on behalf of the people of Victoria.

Uncle Kutcha Edwards performed a revised national anthem, accompanied by Stan Yarramunua on Yidaki.

The Service featured a number of tributes from family and friends of Uncle Jack as well as musical performances from artists including Uncle Bart Willoughby, Dan Sultan and Emma Donovan.

At the conclusion of the Service, Uncle Jack’s coffin was escorted from the venue and accompanied by a procession along St Kilda Road.

Please note that due to copyright and licencing restrictions related to performances during the Service, it is not possible to publish a publicly available recording.