Naracoorte Caves Music Ensemble perform – 24 November

Caves and music will collide when the Naracoorte Caves Music Ensemble premieres Ivan Skawronski’s composition “Adventure To The Limestone Caves” in the Blanche Cave at the Naracoorte World Heritage Festival, 24 November at 12.45pm.

The recently formed Naracoorte Caves Music Ensemble commissioned local, emerging artist, Ivan Skawronski to compose a major new work of Australian music to celebrate 50 years since the discovery of the World-famous fossil beds at the Naracoorte Caves and 25 years since the Caves were inscribed on the World Heritage list.  The new work “Adventure to the Limestone Caves” captures the spirit of exploration, adventure and discovery.  The performance will evoke images of the ancient, natural environment of the Naracoorte Caves and take you on a journey, that celebrates the thrilling discovery of fossil remains.

In Ivan’s word “This music is a tale of exploration, an epic romp through the wilds and down into an uncharted cave system. Like any great adventure, the piece is exciting, rich, and a little exotic, with something new around every corner. It celebrates the spirit of adventure and scientific endeavour, as well as the discovery of a national treasure: a massive trove of fossils that acts as a tiny window into a lost world, giving hints about the extraordinary prehistoric animals that once held coveted places in Australia’s pantheon of iconic fauna.”

The Naracoorte Caves Music Ensemble was created by local musicians to commemorate fifty years since the discovery of the mega fauna fossil remains at the Naracoorte Caves.  The core ensemble comprises composer and violinist Ivan Skawronski, ensemble creator and cellist Tamara Joukoff, flautist Kinta Wilson, clarinettist Geoff Stephens and didgeridoo player Dallis (Tex) Hill.  This project has been supported by Naracoorte Lucindale Council’s Community Art Fund.

The Naracoorte World Heritage Festival, commences at 10.00am at the Naracoorte Caves.  The big fun of the Festival includes talks, tours and performances in the Blanche Cave, entertainment, food and wine at the Mega Stage, University of Adelaide Palaeontologists’ fossil displays and demonstrations at the Fossil Lab and fossil dig sand pit, Fossil Hunters Discovery Trail and special Naracoorte Caves tours. 

At 7.30am the inaugural Naracoorte World Heritage Trail Run kicks off.  There’s a course to suit everyone, choose from the: 22km Mega Fauna Run, 14km Stoney Point Run, 5km Dippy Run and the 1km Fossil Dash.  Appreciate the bushland and pine forest trails, the local kangaroo population and other native wildlife, pass sheep farms, vineyards, and not to mention experience the unique limestone formations that are the Naracoorte Caves.

A free bus will run between the Naracoorte Town Square and the Naracoorte Caves – so leave the car in Naracoorte and enjoy the fun.  Find out more about the Naracoorte World Heritage Festival and Run at

The Naracoorte World Heritage Festival and Run is celebrating two unique anniversaries.  Fifty years ago, in 1969, one of the world’s 10 greatest fossil sites was discovered at the Naracoorte Caves when Professor Rod Wells and Grant Gartrell discovered the largest and best preserved megafauna remains.  Twenty five years later, in 1994, the significance of the fossils was recognised on the World stage when the Naracoorte Caves were inscribed on the World Heritage list.

The World Heritage listing recognises the diversity and the quality of preservation of fossils at the Naracoorte Caves and the scientific value of the fossil deposits.  The fossils found at the Naracoorte Caves allow you to step back in time, giving an insight into 500,000 years of history and a fascinating insight into Australia’s prehistoric past. 

The Festival and Run has received $20,000 funding from the Australian Government through the Building Better Regions Fund.  The Naracoorte Lucindale Council and the Naracoorte Lucindale Business and Tourism Association are also contributing $15,400 and $5,000 respectively.  The University of Adelaide, and the Naracoorte Caves are supporting the Festival and Run with in kind contributions. 

Note in the instance of a total fire ban the event will not be held at the Naracoorte Caves National Park as the park will be closed.