FCAC Announces Speakers for Women of the World Festival


WOW Melbourne 2017—a three-day festival of critical conversations, music, film and performance celebrating women—will be held in March

Footscray Community Arts Centre (FCAC) has announced the speakers in a program of powerful and game-changing women, to be featured as part of its WOW—Women of the World Festival—Melbourne 2017, at FCAC Thursday, 23 March—Saturday 25 March.

FCAC is home to many international communities with both local and global contexts, and WOW Melbourne—a three-day festival of critical conversations, music, film and performance celebrating women and taking an in-depth look at the remaining challenges to gender equality—will mirror this diversity in all of its intersections across themes, challenges and celebrations. The festival is delivered in partnership with Southbank Centre London, Victoria University, Maribyrnong City Council, VicHealth and cohealth.

The first announcement of speakers includes former leader of the Black Panther Party Elaine Brown; prolific writer, director and actor Margaret Harvey; senior Victorian bureaucrat and author of The Good Greek Girl Maria Katsonis; local artist, curator, educator and cultural producer (including developing FCAC’s first Indigenous Arts and Cultural program) Paola Balla; arts professional and refugee advocate Tania Cañas; VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter; and Deathwalker Zenith Virago, with many more speakers to be announced over the coming weeks.

Also included in the program is an exciting international residency for visiting visual and performing artists from South Asia and South East Asia in conjunction with Asia TOPA: Asia-Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts and FCAC’s Collaborate Asia program, which is funded by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts; its arts funding and advisory body.

Themed Women, Art and Politics, the artists-in-residence will explore the concepts in their local and global contexts and how this impacts their practice and communities; developing new collaborative works, critical conversations and creative exchanges.

Launched at London’s Southbank Centre in 2011 by Artistic Director Jude Kelly, WOW—Women of the World, has been identified as the largest network of women in the world, with its festivals engaging and inspiring over one million women across five continents including cities in the US, Egypt, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, the UK, and Australia.

WOW Melbourne will run from 23-25 March 2017. Program highlights, including a selection of extraordinary keynotes and exciting projects and partnerships will be launched 22 November 2016.

Southbank Centre’s WOW—Women of the World Festival will run in London from 8-12 March 2017.


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