Thursday, January 28, 2016

Working with the Story Peddlers on January 26, a difficult date for many of us.

January 26 has been and gone. It a date that provokes thought and reflection. The City of Greater Dandenong hosts a magical festival for residents.

The residents in this Community come from over 150 countries. I’ve worked many times for the CGD  and over the years have come to know some of the remarkable librarians and event organisers. I’ve also been privileged to listen to the stories of migration, escape and refuge of some of the residents.

Amid the voices calling for a rethink of anthem, date, constitutional recognition of Aboriginal people, treaty … of which my voice is one, I heard another voice yesterday. She said, ‘I have no English today. I speak Dari. I am so happy’. And heart to heart we enjoyed a big hug. When the day was over, and home at last, I googled ‘Dari’.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Taking stories and music to the people: The 'Dog's Breakfast'

When my friend Sarah Depasquale and I developed our show around the theme of migratory shore birds, we hoped that we would find a way to compliment the work of the local rangers.  We conceived it so it so the story could be told in parts or as a whole, with the aim of being as flexible as possible.

 Ranger Libby our hi-viz roadie

While its wonderful to tell the stories to the converted (those who understand the plight of the birds) the real challenge is to get the message out there to folks who do not know about the situation or feel powerless to do anything about it.

This morning Sarah and I attended the annual Dog's Breakfast held at Altona, a short walk from the Point Cook Coastal Park and Cheetham Wetlands. Cheetham is recognized under the Ramsar Convention as being a significant wetland habitat.

We followed a list of speakers who talked about responsible dog ownership, snake bites, health and training tips. Rounding off the morning with the story of Tom the Red-necked Stint and his epic journey from Siberia to Altona in Hobsons Bay, we hope that we offered some kind of bridge of understanding for those who love to let their dogs run free but are yet to learn about the needs of the birds who are feeding up to make their journey back to the arctic tundra to breed.

Sarah an I both love and challenge. She is from a classical music back ground and I have a classical theatre background. Getting outside and taking stories and music to the people is the best!

L-R Ranger Andrew, Sarah, me and Ranger Libby


Blog Archive