The 2016 Perth Writers Festival will take place between 18 and 21 February at The University of Western Australia and brings together writers, artists, thinkers, provocateurs and innovators from around the globe for a stimulating and inspiring literary weekend.
Bookending the 2016 Perth Writers Festival are two brilliant writers: popular British philosopher and cultural maverick Roman Krznaric will deliver an enlightening opening address on empathy and its power to transform our lives and The New York Times bestselling novelist Lisa Genova (Still Alice, Inside The O’Briens) will speak in the closing address about the artist’s role in finding moments of light, hope and connection in neurological diseases. Influential thinker Richard Dawkins will provide intellectual rigour in a sold-out evening discussing his new memoir, Brief Candle in the Dark: My Life In Science. The UK-based Empathy Museum will present the Human Library consisting of 20 ‘living’ books centered on the themes of food and age in the UWA Sunken Garden.
From Paddock To Print is a major program highlight of the 2016 Perth Writers Festival and will feature a series of panels exploring the world of culinary storytelling, food trends, influential cookbooks, and the rise of food blogging and photography. A line-up of remarkable food writers, chefs, stylists and producers will share their expertise and passion including Anna Jones, Valli Little, Michelle Crawford, Paul West, Sophie Zakolar, Damon Gameau, Indira Naidoo, Alice Zaslavsky and many more.
Perth Writers Festival Program Manager Katherine Dorrington said: “This year’s program is engaging with the theme of empathy and how important literature is in speaking to our common humanity. Audiences will feast on debates about what an empathic government might look like, the importance of home, and the ways that food can bring us together at another richly layered Perth Writers Festival.”
In 2016, The Big Picture will showcase special film screenings handpicked by Perth Writers Festival guests and Barefaced Stories will host a live storytelling event with Festival authors sharing true-life tales on the theme, ‘The Way You Make Me Feel’. Audiences will once again be able to enjoy lively conversations on the connections between literature and music with the Festival’s Fine-Tuning series curated by Jae Laffer of The Panics. This year’s Perth Writers Festival guests include Simon Winchester, Patrick Gale, Magda Szubanski, Iain Pears, Don Watson, Lauren Groff, Patrick de Witt, Paolo Bacigalupi, Jasper Fforde, Masha Gessen, Simon Sebag Montefiore, Rosie Waterland and many more.
Celebrating its eighth year, the Perth Writers Festival Family Day continues to give children the opportunity to meet and co-create with their favourite authors and illustrators, get hands on with art workshops and word games, and be entertained with playful performances that the whole family will enjoy. Every child who attends Family Day will receive their very own Perth Writers Festival passport that unlocks all the day’s activities.
Special guests will include superstar author Andy Griffiths and an imaginative treehouse installation, Lucy Cousins and Maisy the mouse for story time, artist in residence Sean E Avery, who will create a public art mural, and freestyle group Sketch the Rhyme, who will infuse art and hip-hop in a fun, interactive performance.
Children’s authors will include storyteller extraordinaire Katherine Rundell, man of action and adventure Jack Heath, Australian favourite Sally Rippin, queens of fantasy Emily Rodda and Carole Wilkinson, plus many more.
Join 720 ABC’s Afternoons with Gillian O’Shaughnessy for a special live broadcast from the Tropical Grove on Friday 19 February. And extending the Festival conversations to a national audience with broadcasts from the Perth Writers Festival Precinct over the weekend are two special live broadcasts from Radio National’s Drive with Patricia Karvelas for conversations with journalist and author Masha Gessen, the Empathy Museum’s Roman Krznaric, and PIAF artist-in-residence Claire Cunningham. More information is contained in the Festival program.
Register at perthfestival.com.au to receive your free Perth Writers Festival program and look for it in The West Australian on Saturday 16 January.
WHERE: Perth Writers Festival Precinct, UWA
WHEN: Thursday 18 February - Sunday 21 February 2016