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First Wave Girls Can’t Surf + Q&A with Pauline Menczer

11 August 2024

In the Playhouse


Australia | 2021 | English | Documentary

The untold story of how a band of renegade surfer girls in the 1980s fought for equality, changing surf culture forever. Featuring champion surfers Layne Beachley, Pauline Menczer, Pam Burridge and more. 

This special screening is followed by a Q&A with Pauline Menczer, moderated by Natasha Yuncken. 

A great tribute to all of these athletes.

Sydney Morning Herald

The incredible story of the fight for gender equality in the surf world

The untold story of how a band of renegade surfer girls in the 1980s fought to create their own professional sport, changing surf culture forever. It’s the 1980s and the world of professional surfing is a circus of fluoro colours, peroxide hair and radical male egos. Girls Can't Surf follows the journey of a band of renegade surfers who took on the male-dominated professional surfing world to achieve equality and change the sport forever. Featuring surfing greats Jodie Cooper, Frieda Zamba, Pauline Menczer, Lisa Andersen, Pam Burridge, Wendy Botha, Layne Beachley and more, Girls Can't Surf is a wild ride of clashing personalities, sexism, adventure and heartbreak, with each woman fighting against the odds to make their dreams of competing a reality.

Presented by Sydney Opera House and Tracks


Watch the trailer

Cast and credits


Christopher Nelius


Jodie Cooper

Frieda Zamba

Pauline Menczer

Lisa Andersen

Pam Burridge

Wendy Botha

Layne Beachley

Other information

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