A Night by the Fire with Kyel Dancey

This week we had Kyel Dancey speak at our Night by the Fire event. Kyel is an Indigenous musician and youth mentor from Logan City, Queensland. Kyel's Indigenous heritage is linked to the Thompson’s Barcaldine (Iningai), Dancey’s Dirranbandi (Kooma) and the May family from Wellington (Wiradjuri), New South Wales. Kyel was raised by his mother who worked for local Indigenous organisations throughout his younger life and it was her work that sparked an interest and instilled a passion for working with community.

We’ve had some of Kyel’s music playing on the large screen in kuril dhagun as a part of the Deadly Brothers exhibition so it was really lovely to hear more about his passion for creating music. Kyel has been involved in Rock, Heavy Metal and Hip-Hop projects since a young age. Kyel formed DieVsCity in 2011 and just two weeks after recording their first song, DieVsCity won the 2011 Q Music Award (electro/Dance Category). The following year, DieVsCity was invited to play the Opera House at the 2012 MusicOz Awards where they were nominated and won ‘Best Alternative’ act. Kyel has taken DieVsCity around Australia and even on two international tours of New Zealand in the past year and a half with more shows and tours planned for the near future.

Kyel has also recently gained full-time employment with the Gold Coast Titans as a workshop facilitator. He gets to travel with Preston Campbell and Clinton Toopi and deliver the Titans4Tomorrow program which encourages school retention, career aspiration, leadership, mentoring and case management for disengaged youth and youth who have experienced the justice system.

Kyel might seem familiar to some State Library regulars as he was also featured in the Logan State of Mind exhibition which was held in The Studio during Reconciliation Week this year. He is one of the ambassadors for the #NoMoreLivesLost campaign which aims to promote positive people and events that are associated to Logan as a community response to the negative media hype at the beginning of the year. This is an initiative that is close to my heart as Logan is my hometown too. Kyel is a great role model and champion for Logan City.

I was extremely happy that our Live Streaming was successful and people were able to watch the talk from anywhere in the world via the SLQ website. We have had a couple of attempts to do this with previous talks but had issues with internet capabilities and equipment setup. We have a portable live streaming kit so you can look forward to more live steaming from kuril dhagun and also out in community. We had 10 viewers watching the talk in real-time and we look forward to growing our on-line audience. Keep an eye out for upcoming talks via the SLQ website.


Kyel is looking forward to continuing his work in both of his areas of interest; community and music, with aspirations of one day combining both passions into the one dream. With his aptitude and dedication, I have no doubt that this will transpire.


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