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new speakers and events for this year's record-breaking festival

Sydney – Wednesday 7 February 2018. Sydney Opera House today announced new speakers and events for its record-breaking 2018 All About Women festival on Sunday 4 March 2018.

An additional panel session featuring festival headliners has been programmed to accommodate the unprecedented response to the Opera House’s sixth annual All About Women (AAW) festival with many sessions now sold out.

Audiences around Australia and New Zealand will also be able to tune into All About Women highlights livestreamed to 26 community venues thanks to an expanded satellite program supported by Opera House Major Partner, Westpac. Westpac’s generous support will also enable All About Women talks to be Auslan interpreted.

Additional speakers, chairs and artists joining the All About Women 2018 line-up include:

  • An intercultural panel onSmashing the Patriarchy will examine how we can subvert, challenge and overthrow systemic factors underpinning female oppression. Comprising Saudi Arabian women’s rights activist, Manal al-Sharif and outspoken media commentator Clementine Ford, the discussion (chaired by social commentator/playwright Van Badham) will cover a broad spectrum of topics that unite women globally: sexual harassment and violence; domestic assault; workplace inequality; domestic labour; and cultural representation.
  • Francesca Donner, Director of The New York Times Gender Initiative, joins the founder of the #MeToo movement, Tarana Burke and Vanity Fair Contributing Editor, Fran Lebowitz for an unmissable dissection of the first year of Donald Trump’s US Presidency. ‘Grabbing Back: Women in the Age of Trump’ will be chaired by political journalist and host of ABC’s The Drum, Julia Baird.
  • Artist, writer and leading autism activist Katharine Annear joins a vital discussion examining how feminism can truly embrace Disability and Intersectionality, alongside cabaret artist, Kath Duncan and West Australian of the Year nominee (2015) and champion for wheelchair users’ rights, Samantha Connor. This panel will be chaired by Van Badham.
  • Dr Nicola Henry, socio-legal scholar on sexual violence at RMIT and Emma Hogan, South East Asian Correspondent for The Economist, both experts on the Rohingya refugee crisis, join former political prisoner and human rights campaigner, Wai Wai Nu for a panel on ‘Women and War’.
  • Sally Goldner, LGBTI Victorian of the Year (2015) will chair a panel interrogating the latest thinking on transgender politics, genderqueer and non-binary voices in feminism, featuring UK musician CN Lester, ABC broadcaster Eddie Ayres and comedian Jordan Raskopoulos.
  • Fairfax journalist Jacqueline Maley will chair a discussion on the future of the #MeToo movement with Tarana Burke and Tracey Spicer, veteran journalist currently investigating sexual harassment in the Australian media.
  • Outspoken media commentator and Fight Like a Girl author Clementine Ford will chair a discussion on vulnerability, intimacy and possibilities for enduring love lead by Canadian author Mandy Len Catron (How to Fall in Love With Anyone).
  • Head of Talks & Ideas at Sydney Opera House, Edwina Throsby will chair a panel examining the historical legacy and future directions of feminism featuring Barbara Caine, Anne Summers, Rebecca Walker and Nakkiah Lui - each representing the different ‘waves’  - along with Rebecca Walker’s talk on Beauty as Resistance.
  • City of Sydney Councillor and former Vivid Ideas Curator, Jess Scully will chair a session led by Kate Bolick, author of the blockbuster article ‘All The Single Ladies’ (The Atlantic) and follow-on book, Spinster.
     
  • LA-based Suzanne Lacy, an international pioneer in the field of socially engaged public art, will showcase four video works documenting large-scale performances that examine public narratives around domestic violence and rape: Tattooed Skeleton (2010); Storying Rape (2002); Auto on the Edge of Time (1993-1994) and Three Weeks in May (1997). 
     
  • Star artisanal cheesemaker Kristen Allan will lead fetta-making workshops, and Georgina Larsson, Senior Sommelier at Aria Sydney/Solotel Group, unlocks the secrets of wine in a guided tasting session featuring female wine makers from around Australia. These events complete a lady-led food and drink program which also includes hands-on workshops with Alex Elliott-Howery (Cornersmith Café and Picklery) and Harriet Leigh (Archie Rose Distillery). 

A full day of inspiring sessions, workshops and dancing kicks off early at the Opera House on Sunday 4 March with yoga on the Forecourt. After lunch, Sydney Philharmonia Choirs will lead an open choir performing repertoire drawn from the different waves of feminism, from select Emmaline Pankhurst quotes set to music, through to Helen Reddy, Le Tigre and Beyoncé.

Dance/hip-hop collective, Haiku Hands have curated a Block Party to shake off the patriarchy on the dancefloor and close out the festival with a bang. They’re sharing the all-female bill with Okenyo (“...a modern-day Cleopatra, exuberant with confidence, grace and a fierce sense of style and attitude,” Happy) and CLYPSO (“a collage of jungle beats, grimey basslines, atari-esque synths and afropunk infused electronica”, Triple J Unearthed), alongside DJs Ayebatonye and Mowgli May.

To register for Sydney Philharmonia Choirs click here.

All About Women Satellite Sessions

Westpac is the Event and Satellite Partner of this year’s festival.

Satellite sessions include:

  • Women in the Age of Trump – Fran Lebowitz, Tarana Burke and Francesca Donner
  • #Metoo and the making of a movement – Tarana Burke and Tracey Spicer
  • Beauty as Resistance – Rebecca Walker
  • Suffragettes to Social Media: Waves of Feminism – Barbara Caine, Nakkiah Lui, Anne Summers and Rebecca Walker

Confirmed venues include:

  • Canberra Theatre Centre, Canberra, ACT
  • Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, Bathurst, NSW
  • Charles Rasp Memorial Library, Broken Hill, NSW
  • Hurstville Library, Hurstville, NSW
  • Jetty Memorial Theatre, Coffs Harbour, NSW
  • Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre, Penrith, NSW
  • Wollongong Town Hall, Wollongong, NSW
  • Museum of the Riverina, Wagga Wagga, NSW
  • Riverside Theatres, Parramatta, NSW
  • JP Belshaw Lecture Theatre, University of New England, Armidale, NSW
  • Armidale War Memorial Library, Armidale, NSW
  • University of Newcastle, Ourimbah, NSW
  • Griffith Regional Theatre, Griffith, NSW
  • Bega Civic Centre, Bega, NSW
  • Maitland Town Hall, Maitland, NSW
  • Albury-Wodonga Campus, Charles Sturt University, Albury, NSW
  • Western Plains Cultural Centre, Dubbo, NSW
  • Alice Springs Public Library, Alice Springs, NT
  • Darwin City Library, Darwin, NT
  • Geelong Library and Heritage Centre, Geelong, VIC
  • James Cook University, Townsville, QLD
  • Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre, Mackay, QLD
  • Tanks Arts Centre, Cairns, QLD
  • Screen Queensland, QLD
  • Auckland War Memorial Museum, Auckland, NZ
  • Christchurch Art Gallery, Christchurch, NZ
     

For more information about Satellite events, or to register interest in getting involved click here.