Alfira O'Sullivan

Alfira O’Sullivan is the Artistic Director and founder of the New South Wales-based Suara Indonesia Dance.

Born in Perth of Acehnese-Irish descent, Alfira studied at the Institute of the Arts Yogyakarta and Surakarta (Central Java), and conducted research and trained under master dance instructors in Aceh (North Sumatra). Her Bachelor of International Studies from the University of NSW informs her cross-cultural engagements in Australia and abroad and she has completed an Honours thesis at Sydney University, on the history and significance of Acehnese body percussion.  She is a renowned educator, leading workshops across the globe, from New Zealand to Europe, Palestine to South East Asia and Papua New Guinea.

Alfira specialises in traditional Acehnese body percussion, sitting percussive dances encompassing intricate pattern making with your hands and body, accompanied by traditional devotional songs. She is also trained in and performs contemporary Indonesian dance styles from Java, Bali and Sumatra islands.

She founded Suara Indonesia Dance in 2001 and performs as a solo artist as well as with her dance troupe at national and international festivals. She has collaborated with a number of Indonesian and Australian contemporary music ensembles and artists on music and theatre projects including: Lyn Williams AM and the Gondwana Choirs, the late Slamet Gundono, Agung Gunawan, Contemporary Asian Australian Performance, The Rhythm Hunters, Sawung Jabo and GengGong, Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal and Wei Zen Ho.

Her contemporary work has been commissioned by Inner West Council, Blacktown Arts Centre, MCA and Maritime Museum, Sydney.

Workshops by Alfira O’Sullivan

Acknowledgement of Country

Strut Dance acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and Elders of this nation and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that this website may contain images or names of people who have passed away.