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LITERATURE – Sydney Writer’s Festival Highlights

May 20, 2008toMay 25, 2008


Sydney Writer’s Festival 20082008 Sydney Writer’s Festival Program Highlights

  • Tuesday 20 May – 25 May 2008

Including Opening & Closing Addresses

Opening Address: Jeanette Winterson
Tuesday, May 20, 6:30-8pm
Sydney Opera House, Concert Hall

 Jeanette Winterson OBE is one of Britain’s great contemporary writers and the author of some of the most purely imaginative and pleasurable novels of recent times, as well as extraordinarily beautiful essays on art, life and philosophy. A renowned orator, her SWF opening address entitled GET A BOOK GET A LIFE! how words create meaning will be filled with the insights and passion of her literary work.

Liyarn Ngarn
Wednesday, May 21, 7:30-9:45pm
Sydney Theatre at Walsh Bay

 Liyarn Ngarn (meaning ‘coming together of the spirit’ in the Yawuru language of the West Kimberley region) is a powerful and important documentary charting renowned British actor Pete Postlethwaite’s personal journey with respected songman Archie Roach into Aboriginal Australia. Seen through the eyes of an outsider who is suddenly immersed in the mire of Australian race relations, the film documents a 30 year long mission of indigenous leader and Yawuru man, Patrick Dodson (pictured), to bring about a lasting and true reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians. This is a culturally significant and moving account of suffering and searching for justice. Following the screening, Pete Postlethwaite, Patrick Dodson and Archie Roach discuss the road to reconciliation.

Simon Sebag Montefiore in Conversation with Bob Carr
Thursday, May 22, 6:45-7:45pm
City Recital Hall

Historian, novelist and television presenter Simon Sebag Montefiore is the award winning and critically acclaimed author of the bestselling books Young Stalin, Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar and Catherine the Great & Potemkin. A Russian specialist, he has also published an illustrated selection of great men and women from history, 101 World Heroes. His new novel is Sashenka and he is writing Jerusalem: the Biography, a fresh history of the Middle East. He talks with Bob Carr.

An Evening with Anne Enright
Thursday, May 22, 8:15-9:15pm
City Recital Hall

Dubliner Anne Enright’s fiction is jet dark – but how it glitters. The Gathering, her fourth novel and winner of the 2007 Man Booker Prize, is a story of family dysfunction that brilliantly delineates the wonder and horror of love with reckless intelligence, savage humour, slow revelation and no consolation. She talks with Ramona Koval.

An Evening with Judith Lucy
Friday, May 23, 7-8pm
Paddington Town Hall

 One of Australia’s most popular comediennes, Judith Lucy’s work in radio, television and her sell out national tours have made her a household name. She talks about her memoir, The Lucy Family Alphabet. Don’t expect to sit through this with a straight face. 
The Big Reading
Friday, May 23, 7-8:30pm
Sydney Theatre at Walsh Bay

There is something transcendental about listening to an author read from their work and The Big Reading has become a Sydney Writers’ Festival institution. Listen to the whispers, lilts and cadences of the writer’s voice in a selection of readings from Junot Díaz, Anne Enright, Heather O’Neill, Vincent Lam and Stefan Merrill Block (pictured) and hosted by Annette Shun Wah. Includes the announcement of The Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelists for 2007.

Closing Address: Junot Díaz
Sunday, May 25, 6:30-7:30pm
City Recital Hall

Junot Díaz presents the Festival’s 2008 Closing Address. One of contemporary fiction’s most distinctive and irresistible voices, he is author of the highly acclaimed Drown and most recently, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, a galvanic novel that is both a big picture window that opens out on the sorrows of Dominican history, and a small, intimate window that reveals one family’s life and loves. Time and New York Magazine selected Oscar Wao as the best novel of 2007 and it was awarded the National Book Critics Circle award for fiction in 2007.


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