Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture will be celebrated like never before as part of a spectacular pre-match and half-time entertainment lineup for the 2023 Dreamtime at the ‘G match between Essendon and Richmond on Saturday May 20.

Presented by Coles, the highly anticipated Dreamtime at the ‘G pre-match show will include performances by Butchulla songman Fred Leone and ARIA-nominated musician and songwriter Mo’Ju who will be joined by Wurundjeri dance groups Djirri Djirri and Bandok Tati and Dreamtime Contemporary Dancers.

For the first time, the Dreamtime at the ‘G entertainment will feature a combination of traditional and contemporary elements and feature a world class lighting show that will highlight the AFL’s ‘Moments Forged by First Nations’ campaign and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures.


The Dreamtime at the ‘G match will begin with a Welcome to Country conducted by senior Aboriginal Elder of the Wurundjeri People of Melbourne and surrounds Aunty Joy Murphy AO, while Essendon and Richmond Football Clubs will each perform a Dreamtime ceremony dance prior to the opening bounce.  

The Half-Time Show will feature a special performance by the Archie Roach band featuring Australian Football Hall of Famer Michael Long, award winning musician, dancer and Archie Roach’s son, Amos Roach, award-winning singer-songwriter Bumpy, Mo’Ju and singer-songwriter Radical Son.

The performance will feature a special rendition of ‘Colour of your Jumper’ written by the late Australian singer-songwriter Archie Roach which pays tribute to the 30-year anniversary of Nicky Winmar’s stance against racism.

Amos Roach. Picture: Mitch Power

AFL Executive General Manager Customer and Commercial Kylie Rogers said the 2023 Dreamtime at the G entertainment would be one to remember.

“The AFL is delighted to welcome a host of talented First Nations artists and performers to the MCG for the annual Dreamtime match as we continue to celebrate Sir Doug Nicholls Round,” Ms Rogers said.

“We know storytelling is an important part of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and we’re excited to bring this tradition to life on the hallowed turf of the MCG, on the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri people, like we’ve never seen before.

“I’d like to thank Coles for their support of the Dreamtime at the G entertainment and look forward to seeing a full house at the MCG for this tremendous occasion.” 

Coles Head of Sponsorship and Events, Carmel Horvath said the leading Australian retailer was proud to support the Dreamtime at the G entertainment for the second consecutive year.

Radical Son

“As one of Australia’s largest private employers of Indigenous Australians, Coles is proud to extend our support for the Dreamtime at the ‘G entertainment that will be a wonderful celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. It’s very much aligned to our First Nations Team Member Network which seeks to build meaningful relationships, provide support and promote career development opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at Coles.”

A select number of gates for the Dreamtime at the ‘G match will open from 2:15pm ahead of the VFL curtain raiser match between Essendon and Richmond at 2:35pm, with the pre-match entertainment to commence at 7:03pm (EST).

Fans can tune in to watch the Dreamtime at the ‘G match and entertainment from 7pm (EST) on Seven, Foxtel and Kayo.

The AFL would like to acknowledge the support of its valued partner AAMI who has provided more than 7,000 tickets to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and community organisations to enjoy the Dreamtime at the ‘G experience as part of the AFL’s Community Ticketing Program.

Bumpy. Picture: Georgia Mein


  • 2.15pm: Gates 1,3,6 open
  • 2.35pm: VFL Match Start – Essendon v Richmond
  • 6.05pm: The Long Walk
  • 7.03pm: Pre-match entertainment commences featuring Fred Leone, Mo’Ju and Djirri Djirri and Bandok Tati and Dreamtime Contemporary Dancers and Welcome to Country conducted by Aunty Joy Murphy.
  • 7.12pm: Pre-match entertainment concludes
  • 7.34pm: Dreamtime Ceremony performance by Essendon and Richmond Football Clubs
  • 7.38pm: Coin Toss
  • 7.40pm: Match Start
  • Halftime: Half Time performance on Ponsford stage from Archie Roach band featuring, Michael Long, Amos Roach, Bumpy, Mo’Ju and Radical Son
  • Post Game: Presentation of Yiooken Trophy to best on ground by Aunty Pam Pederson OAM & Michael Long.


Amos Roach:

Amos Roach is a proud Ngarrandjerri/ Djab Wurrung/Gunditj Mara man who has been playing didgeridoo, guitar and piano since he was eight-years-old. He is the son of Archie Roach.

His music presents a narrative of healing, told with song and dance. Amos plays his own songs, founded in rhythm with the Didgeridoo and Flamenco influenced rap music, family ballads and rock that shakes the ground and compels us to dance. Amos has claimed a number of accolades throughout his career, including the 2019 Award Winning Director/ Choreographer ‘Neon Corroboree’ Melbourne Fringe Festival and was announced as the recipient of the First Nations Artist in Residence program.


Adopting her childhood nickname — adorned due to a knack for bumping into all kinds of obstacles — Bumpy pulls from the strength found in tenderness, scars and all. The Noongar woman and Naarm artist’s stirring voice is transportive, arresting listeners with complex, intimate and multi-faceted truths of loss, joy and connection. Whether paired-backed to just her voice and a guitar (‘Falling’), adorned with luscious strings (‘Return Home’) or playing off a live band ('Leave It All Behind', ‘Hide & Seek’), Bumpy’s music is always honest, raw and purely captivating. 2022 saw Bumpy win the Triple J Unearthed NIMAs Competition and play at the awards in Darwin, feature as a Triple J Spotlight Artist and win the Uncle Archie Roach Foundation award at the Music Victoria Awards.

Fred Leone: (pronounced: Fred Lee-o-nee)

Fred Leone is one of the Butchulla Songmen with Aboriginal, Tongan and South-Sea Islander roots. He comes from the Garrwa and Butchulla tribes. Fred’s role as a Songman sees him as one of the custodians of the traditional songs of the Butchulla tribe and one of a handful of keepers and custodians of their language. Fred is active in his role as a Songman, ensuring that contemporary Butchulla stories are embedded into the collective memory of the tribes oral histories and ceremonies going forward. Fred blends his love of hip-hop rhyming and his singularly unique vocal style with his adeptness at playing traditional instruments to create an utterly new and unique sound. He’s known for his abilities to transcend genre and form whilst bringing the true integrity of his life’s calling as a Songman to the forefront of all that he touches.


Recent years have seen ARIA-nominated, Naarm based, musician and songwriter Mo’Ju enter new realms of renown, their brand of visceral storytelling striking at the heart of a country whose social and cultural climate was manoeuvring a particular state of unrest and change. Their 2018 album ‘Native Tongue’ received widespread international acclaim, with the lead single of the same title winning the Best Independent Single category in the 2019 AIR Awards. The songwriter, storyteller and third culture kid (Filipino/Wiradjuri), produces sounds that can be equal measures of sensuality, vulnerability and hard-hitting strength. Mo'ju has toured with international performers including Tony Joe White, Rufus Wainwright, Aloe Blacc and Australian artists Hilltop Hoods, Paul Kelly and Kira Puru. In 2023, Mo’Ju enters the year with a fresh perspective and presents a new body of work with their fourth studio LP, ‘ORO, PLATA, MATA’ released in January. 

Radical Son:

This musician of Kamilaroi and Tongan heritage has songs to sing and stories to tell.

Singer-songwriter David Leha, who goes by the name of Radical Son, is a strong man with an even stronger stage presence, and a mesmerising, seductive voice that at once punches your soul and triggers your heart. After a five-year hiatus from performing, Radical Son has re-emerged to premiere new tracks from his upcoming sophomore album Bilambiyal. He has the power to transform and, along with songs from the highly acclaimed debut album Cause ‘n Affect (2014), and the occasional soul classic, Radical Son creates an inexplicably compelling concert. Renowned for his moving lyrics, original rhyme and spoken word, expect to witness a soulful presence like no other in this country. 


Djirri Djirri:

Djirri Djirri Dancers are a Wurundjeri female dance group, and, also Traditional Custodians of Narrm (Melbourne). Djirri Djirri means Willy Wagtail in Woiwurrung, the language of Wurundjeri people, the Traditional Custodians of Narrm and surrounds. The Willy Wagtail the Spirit Bird, gave them dance. Many of their group have danced since they were young children, while others have learnt as adults. You will hear Mandy Nicholson singing in Woiwurrung, the language of the Wurundjeri people and watch the language come to life through dance.

Bandok Tati:

Bandok Tati meaning 'Small Ant Brothers' is a Wurundjeri young men's Aboriginal dance group that is based in Narrm. It consists of brothers not through blood, but through heart. 

Dreamtime Contemporary Dancers:

This group is comprised of selected individual indigenous dancers and does not have a formal name

Club Dreamtime Ceremony Dance:

This year’s pre-match ceremony introduces, for the first time, the Dreamtime Dance. Featuring the Richmond Football Club’s Laguntas dancers, and Essendon Football Club’s Koorie Youth Will Shake Spear dancers, this collaboration celebrates the coming together of players to compete in the game of Marngrook.