A. G. Pettet has published in journals, anthologies and magazines around the world. His second collection of poetry 'Improvised Dirges- New & Selected Poems' was published in 2015 by Bareknuckle Books. Pettet was co-editor of the Bareknuckle Poet Anthology 2015 which was included in The Australian ‘Best Books of 2015’ He was the Assistant Director of Queensland Poetry Festival 1997–2000 and has presented at Brisbane Writers Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, The National Poetry Festival and National Young Writers Festival.
Alison Whittaker is a Gomeroi poet, life writer and essayist from Gunnedah and Tamworth, north-western NSW. She now lives in Sydney on Wangal land, where she studies a combined Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws at the University of Technology Sydney. Her work has been published in Meanjin, Vertigo and Colouring the Rainbow: Blak Queer and Trans Perspectives. In 2015, Alison was awarded one of two Indigenous Writing Fellowships by the State Library of Queensland’s black&write! project. Written over four years and inspired by small fragments of her own life, Lemons in the Chicken Wire is Alison’s first published collection.
Amanda Hayman is an artist and creative from Logan city. She has cultural connections to Kalkadoon and Wakka Wakka country through her paternal grandmother. She has a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Contemporary Art from Griffith University. Amanda is the current Manager of kuril dhagun, the Indigenous space and public programming unit at the State Library of Queensland.
Amrita Hepi is a professional dancer/ dance maker, writer and activist; a Bundjulung and Ngapuhi woman interested in movement as manifested by all bodies and reimagining/creating the greatness that will be WOC first nations futures. She has exhibited and performed at the Sydney Opera House, Nextwave festival, Australia’s Museum of Contemporary Art, Carriageworks, Banff Centre in Canada and hosts a radio show about independent dance on FBi radio. Most recently she has joined Western Australia's Indigenous Contemporary dance company OCHRES while she continues to also teach pop culture dance classes around the country.
Kia ora my name is Anaheke Metua, I live and work on Bundjalung Country (Northern Rivers) and I acknowledge my ancestors from Aotearoa (NZ), Cook Islands, France, Germany, England. The convergence of my colourful mixed hertitage and my insatiable creative energy has fostered a deep curiosity in exploring, identity as interwoven with the landscape and expressing my journey through the art of weaving. As a fibre artist, weaving with natural fibres has encouraged the spontaneous act of art making with the natural world that nurtured my early creative instincts. As a faciltator of weaving circles we learn to develop a sense of place, honor weaving traditions past and present through our innate ability to create.
Angela Peita is a Brisbane based spoken word artist, workshop facilitator and event host. She is part of the team that bring Brisbane Ruckus Slam each month and treats heckling as a professional sport. One day, she hopes to own a dog.
Anna Jacobson is a Brisbane based poet, writer, and artist. In 2015 she was shortlisted for the Arts Queensland Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize for her unpublished manuscript. Her poetry has been published in literary journals including Cordite, Rabbit, Australian Poetry Journal, Tincture and Foam:e. www.annajacobson.com.au
Anthony Lawrence's most recent book is 'Headwaters' (Pitt Street Poetry, 2016). His books and individual poems have won many awards including the Philip Hodgins Memorial Medal, the Blake Poetry Prize, the NSW Premiers Award and the Judith Wright Calanthe Award. He teaches Writing Poetry at Griffith University, Gold Coast, and lives at Kingscliff, on the far north coast of NSW.
There are few Australian voices in the debate on social justice and Indigenous welfare that resonated as strongly as Archie Roach’s. His impact on this country’s musical landscape is equally strong. When Archie released his debut album “Charcoal Lane” 25 years ago, his song “Took The Children Away” shone a spotlight on the impact of the forcible removal of Indigenous children from their families and brought it to the attention of the global community. At the time, the song won two ARIA Awards and an international Human Rights Achievement Award (making Archie the first person ever to receive this award for a song). Since then, Archie has received countless awards, and released eight albums and a retrospective box set (of his first four albums). He has collaborated with the finest musicians in the country, including Paul Kelly, Troy Cassar-Daley, Christine Anu, Vika and Linda Bull, Shane Howard and Dan Sultan. He has toured with some of the world’s most iconic artists, including Leonard Cohen, Rodriguez, Bob Dylan, Tracy Chapman, Billy Bragg, Paul Simon, Joan Armatrading, Suzanne Vega and Patti Smith. Three decades after the release of “Charcoal Lane”, his work continues to reflect the struggles and issues facing Indigenous Australians as well as exploring universal themes of love, friendship, family and community. Archie is currently working on a new album entitled “Let Love Rule”, with producer Craig Pilkington. The songs on the new record explore the many faces of love, calling for great care, more love and unity as we face the future. The album is due for release later this year.
Ben Brown is a poet, children’s author, short story/non-fiction/freelance writer, though he has never quite been able to work out what the various distinctions are, so he refers to himself primarily as a writer, yet he does display an adamant propensity towards performance poetry probably as a result of an overt desire to appreciate the sound of his own voice in the hope that others may share his apparent enthusiasm for it. His poetry has been published in various anthologies in New Zealand and around the world and his collection Between the Kindling and the Blaze was shortlisted in the Nga Kupu Ora Aotearoa Maori Book Awards 2014. He lives in Lyttelton, New Zealand.
Bob is a traditional owner of the Kamilaroi Nation from the Balonne River region in South West Queensland. For almost 40 years, he has been an advocate for Aboriginal rights, land rights and Aboriginal self- governance. In the 1980’s, he and other Aboriginal and Islander leaders campaigned successfully and forced the Queensland government to revoke Queensland’s apartheid laws (The Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders Acts) which governed the lives of Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders since 1895. He continues to fight governments, museums, universities, medical schools and art galleries across the world for the rights of the dead and repatriation of the thousands of stolen Aboriginal ancestral human remains and Aboriginal cultural property.
Bonny Cassidy is the author of three poetry collections, most recently, Final Theory (Giramondo, 2014). Her poetry and criticism has been published widely in Australia and internationally. She is Feature Reviews Editor for Cordite Poetry Review, and co-editor with Jessica L Wilkinson, of theAnthology of Contemporary Australian Feminist Poetry (Hunter Publishers, 2016). Bonny is Lecturer in Creative Writing at RMIT University and runs the monthly Sporting Poets reading series in Melbourne.
Brentley Frazer is a contemporary Australian poet. He holds a MA (Writing) from James Cook University and will complete a PhD submission (Creative Writing) at Griffith University in 2016. His poems and other writings have been published in numerous national and international anthologies, journals, magazines and other periodicals. His experimental memoir, Scoundrel Days, will be published by UQP in 2017.
B. R. Dionysius was founding Director of the Queensland Poetry Festival. His poetry has been widely published in literary journals, anthologies, newspapers and online. He is the author of one artist’s book, four poetry collections, a verse novel, and two chapbooks. He won the 2009 Max Harris Poetry Award and was joint winner of the 2011 Whitmore Press Manuscript Prize. He is a member of Australian Poetry’s National Advisory Council. He lives in Brisbane.
Bronwyn Lea was born in Tasmania and grew up in Papua New Guinea. She is the author of three books of poems: Flight Animals (UQP, 2001), which won the 2001 Wesley Michel Wright Prize and the 2002 Fellowship of Australian Writers Anne Elder Award; The Other Way Out (Giramondo, 2008), which won the 2008 Western Australia Premier’s Book Award for Poetry and the 2010 South Australian Premier’s John Bray Poetry Prize; and a selected poems published in the US, The Deep North (George Braziller, 2013). From 2003-09 she was Poetry Editor at the University of Queensland Press and series editor of The Best Australian Poetry anthology. She was the inaugural editor of Australian Poetry Journal (2011-2013) and is currently poetry editor at Meanjin. Bronwyn Lea is Associate Professor of Contemporary Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Queensland.
Brotherhood of the Wordless (BOW) is made up of writers with autism and other disabilities that preclude speech. Through facilitated communication, BOW work with trusted scribes to bring their powerful words to life. BOW have featured at Woodford Folk and Brisbane Writers Festivals to standing ovations, as well as releasing their two-part book Air for the Birds / Big Thoughts from the Frightened Well. brotherhoodofthewordless.com
Chloe Wilson is the author of two poetry collections, The Mermaid Problem and Not Fox Nor Axe, which was shortlisted for the 2016 Kenneth Slessor Prize. She has been awarded the John Marsden Prize for Young Australian Writers, the (Melbourne) Lord Mayor´s Creative Writing Award for Poetry, the Gwen Harwood Poetry Prize, the Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Prize and the Arts Queensland Val Vallis Award. She lives in Melbourne. www.chloe-wilson.com
In marking Singapore's 50th year of nationhood, CHOWK's Artistic Director Raka Maitra turned her choreographic focus to the contemporary literary works of migrant labourers in Singapore who are in the construction and shipyard industries. The poems of love, longing and belonging, coming from the displaced and often invisible builders of Singapore's urban environment, create a complex and poignant reflection on ideas of land and nation-building. Taking some of these works that were written in Bengali as a starting point, From Another Land is a contemporary dance theatre performance that payed homage to the community of migrant labourers and their role in building Singapore.
Clive James was born in Sydney in 1939 and was educated at the University of Sydney and Pembroke College, Cambridge. A memoirist, poet, translator, critic, novelist, travel writer, lyricist and broadcaster, he has written more than thirty books, the two most recently published being Collected Poems and Gate of Lilacs: A Verse Commentary on Proust. In 1992 he was made a Member of the Order of Australia and in 2003 he was awarded the Philip Hodgins memorial medal for literature. He holds honorary doctorates from Sydney University and the University of East Anglia. In 2012 he was appointed CBE and in 2013 an Officer of the Order of Australia. He lives in Cambridge.
Deborah Emmanuel is a Singaporean writer, performer and four-time TEDx speaker. She is a founder of SPEAK, a monthly poetry night. She has published two books, When I Giggle In My Sleep and Rebel Rites. She also holds workshops, makes music with her band Wobology and acts on stage and screen.
My family and cultural links are from South-West Queensland, which is the top end of the Kamilaroi Nation. Prior to establishing Dhinawun Consultancy, I worked within a range of roles within the Queensland Education Department for a period of 21 years. Currently I am employed as the Indigenous Languages Coordinator for the State Library of Queensland to coordinate and support activities under the SLQ Indigenous Languages Strategy. This work entails researching the State Library Collections for language materials as well as conducting research/training workshops to enhance capacity of community to manage their language revival.
Dylan Hoskins has an extensive range of experience in the performing arts community from being a vocalist, composer, and an actor. Being a vocalist and composer in Knock Knock and a vocalist in Gurrumuls "Gospel show" at QPAC in 2015, as well as performing at the 2016 NRL All Stars game with Jessica Mauboy at Suncorp Stadium. Dylan is currently studying his Advanced Diploma in Performing Arts at the Aboriginal Centre of Performing Arts. Recently Dylan performed as part of the anywhere festive in a show called "Three nights only, one note stand" produced by Cluster Arts at The Little Tivola.
Two-time winner of the Midsumma Poetry Out Loud slam and National Poetry Slam finalist, Eleanor has featured at festivals around Australia. Her work has been published in Review of Australian Fiction, Overland Journal, Arc Poetry Magazine, Going Down Swinging, Scum Magazine and Cordite, while recordings of her work have been featured on FBI’s “All the Best“, RRR’s “Aural Text”, 3CR’s “Spoken Word”, ABC Radio National’s “Night Air” and "Radio Tonic" and the online poetry channel, “IndieFeed: Performance Poetry”. She is currently Editor in Chief of Peril Magazine, which considers Asian Australian arts and culture.
Ella Jeffery's poetry and short fiction have appeared in Best Australian Poems 2013, Cordite, Mascara Literary Review and elsewhere. She is a poetry editor at Voiceworks and is currently undertaking a PhD at Queensland University of Technology
Ellen van Neerven is an award-winning writer of Mununjali and Dutch heritage. Her first book, Heat and Light (UQP, 2014), was the recipient of the David Unaipon Award and the Dobbie Literary Award. It was also shortlisted for The Stella Prize and the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Comfort Food is her first collection of poetry.
Emily O'Grady's fiction and poetry have appeared in Westerly, The Lifted Brow, Mascara Literary Review and Award Winning Australian Writing. In 2015 she received the 2015 QUT Emerging Writer's Mentorship.
Author, poet, wizard, mage, artist, outcast, educator, event director, philosopher; Erfan Daliri has been afforded many names and titles in his life, but before all else, he was and is a social change activator. With a Graduate Diploma in Communication for Social Change and over a decade of experience in youth work, social work and refugee settlement, Erfan then forged a career as a spoken word artist with appearances including; Parliament House Canberra, TEDx Byron Bay, and Woodford Folk Festival.
A well-respected community leader, with strong Australian Aboriginal, Tongan and South-Sea Islander heritage, Fred and his family come from the Garawa of Far North West Queensland into the Northern Territory & the Badjtala of the Fraser Coast region of Queensland South East Coast. Since 2013 Fred has been the Guest Curator of Clancestry's "YAWAR" traditional dance event. He has developed his 17-year career working across the Indigenous Hip Hop and QLD Hip Hop scene, Community Cultural Development, Education and Youth sectors to become an established MC, arts and cultural facilitator, educator, youth worker and creative producer. Fred is a current member of the Indigenous Advisory Group for the National Indigenous Music Awards. Fred is the Song man for the Guruman Dancers and also for the new Indigenous world music super group Yawar. He is also an Award Winning Australian Indigenous Hip Hop artist with his group Impossible Odds. Fred joined Black Arm Band in 2014 and is currently the Artistic Director of "dirtsong" and is founder of QLD's only Indigenous owned record label Impossible Odds Records.
Felicity Plunkett is a poet and critic. Her first collection Vanishing Point (UQP, 2009) won the Arts Queensland Thomas Shapcott Prize and was short-listed for several other awards. Her chapbook Seastrands (2011) was published in Vagabond Press’ Rare Objects series. She has a new collection forthcoming. Felicity is Poetry Editor with University of Queensland Press and the editor of Thirty Australian Poets (UQP, 2011). Her reviews and essays appear in The Australian, Sydney Morning Herald, Australian Book Review, Sydney Review of Books etc.
Gina Williams is rapidly gaining a reputation across Australia for bringing a fresh, modern take on ancient traditions; merging evocative sounds, natural acoustic instruments, poignant stories with that incredible, beautiful voice. And it’s made even more special when it’s sung in rare Noongar language. Gina is a Balladong daughter; one of the 14 clan groups which make up the Noongar nation, covering the south west corner of Western Australia. She also has links to the Kija people of the east Kimberley region of WA. This music is informed by an ancient culture and is drawn from a deep well of recent West Australian and an even deeper personal history. By official records, Noongar language is critically endangered (there are less than 400 recognised fluent speak-ers left). Her mother and grandmother, both part of the stolen generations were never allowed to speak their languages Archie Roach has likened Gina to a modern day Edith Piaf, telling audiences that Gina “takes this old, old language, writes and sings these beautiful songs so that we in the audience cannot help but fall in love with the romance of it all.”
Grace is a young Aboriginal woman of Bundjalung/European descent. Growing up, she spent her time between Northern NSW and the Logan/Brisbane area. She was a trainee at the community radio station 98.9FM, and is passionate about reading books from all genres.
Of English, Samoan and Japanese descent born and raised in South Auckland, New Zealand, Grace is a poet and performer writing, teaching and producing for the last 8 years. She has been a key spearhead in the development and growth of the spoken word poetry movement in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Grace published her first collection of poetry AFAKASI SPEAKS (Ala Press 2013.) In 2015 Grace was commissioned by Auckland Theatre Company to write and perform in her first poetry theatre show MY OWN DARLING. Recently she received the 2nd Auckland Mayoral Writers Grant for her collection City Of Undone Darlings. Grace was awarded the Creative New Zealand Emerging Pacific Artist Award 2014.
Graham Akhurst is an Aboriginal writer hailing from the Kokomini of Northern Queensland. He has been published several times in Australia for poetry and short fiction. He is currently completing his writing honours at the University of Queensland, and has ambitions to continue his studies and write his first novel.
Hadley is a story teller, performance poet and MC that has performed at The Cloncurry Merry Muster and Rodeo, Woodford Folk Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, and Alice Springs Writers Festival, where a leather daddy nearly choked him to death with a fistful of Pavlova. With his partner Tessa Rose he has hosted New Years Eve at The Woodford Folk Festival and performed poetry about Twin Peaks to confused G20 protestors. He has had work published by Seizure Online, black & blue and The Fanciful Fiction Auxiliary.
MKO Sun is a slammin' live-meets-electronic groove unit led by frontwoman and primary songwriter, Hannah Makk, whose vocals glimmer at the surface of mind-bent songwriting and big beats. A highly visual creator and performer, and a lover of the weird and wonderful, Makk's lyrics exercise poetry, and paint otherwordly dreamscapes of intergalactic forays (as demonstrated on 2015 release "Opus Opalus", a cosmic and heartfelt dedication to Makk's late father). An immaculate vocal artist, she fluctuates between bell-like opera singer, soulful R&B crooner, 90s rapper, raspy punk princess and full diva belter; and incorporates dance and theatricsinto her performance style.
Ian Powne was only born once. Since 2003 he has been curating music for disparate groups of people. The name of this project is called The Stress of Leisure. In The Stress of Leisure Ian plays guitar, makes up words and sings unusually. He has been described as a “laconic devilish lyricist” and “unashamedly irreverent”. The Stress of Leisure’s recent album ‘Achievement’ appeared in Rocking Horse Records top ten, a career highlight. Ian continues to make up words for songs, but has only written one poem.
India Poulton completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative and Professional Writing at QUT in 2014. She is currently undertaking a Master of Fine Arts (Research) in Ekphrastic Poetry at QUT. India is the current poetry intern at Island Magazine. Her poetry and writing have appeared in The Lifted Brow, Westerly, Stilts, and Yen Magazine.
Ivan Coyote is the award-winning author of ten books, the creator of four short films, and has released three albums that combine storytelling with music. Ivan is a seasoned stage performer and long-time road dog, and over the last eighteen years has become an audience favourite at storytelling, writer's, film, poetry, and folk music festivals from Anchorage to Amsterdam. The Globe and Mail newspaper called Coyote "a natural-born storyteller" and the Ottawa Xpress once said that "Coyote is to Canadian literature what kd lang is to country music: a beautifully odd fixture." Ivan often grapples with the complex and intensely personal issues of gender identity in their work, as well as topics such as family, class, social justice and queer liberation, but always with a generous heart, a quick wit, and the nuanced and finely-honed timing of a gifted raconteur. Ivan's stories remind of us of our own fallible and imperfect humanity while at the same time inspiring us to change the world. Ivan's 11th book, Tomboy Survival Guide, will be released in the fall of 2016 with Arsenal Pulp Press.
Director of Rising Dust, Jack Woon is an independent filmmaker from New Zealand, nominated for the Shanghai International Film Festival Student Shorts Award, as well as winning the Best Director and Best Film for the NZ's Show Me Shorts Film Festival. With a cross-cultural background and wide experience working from China to the Czech Republic, he is passionate about transcending boundaries and finding unexpected connections - between people and across cinematic genres.
Janet Marie Rogers, Victoria Poet Laureate 2012-2015 is a Mohawk/Tuscarora writer from the Six Nations band in southern Ontario. She was born in Vancouver British Columbia and has been living on the traditional lands of the Coast Salish people (Victoria, British Columbia) since 1994. Janet works in the genres of poetry, spoken word performance poetry, video poetry and recorded poetry with music and script writing. Janet is a radio broadcaster, documentary producer and sound artist.
Jarad Bruinstroop is a poet living in Brisbane. He is currently undertaking an Honours year in poetry at QUT focusing on visual and hybrid poetics.
Jeet Thayil was born in Mamalasserie, Kerala, and educated in Bombay, Hongkong and New York. His four poetry collections include English and These Errors Are Correct, which won the 2013 Sahitya Akademi Award for poetry, and his new Collected Works. He is the editor of The Bloodaxe Book of Contemporary Indian Poets and is a visiting professor of poetry at the University of Goa. As a musician and songwriter, he is one half of the contemporary music project Sridhar/Thayil. His Delhi-based band is Still Dirty. Jeet Thayil’s novel Narcopolis won the 2012 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, and was shortlisted for five other prizes, including the Man Booker prize, the Man Asian Literature Prize and the Commonwealth Prize.
Jeanine Leane is a Wiradjuri writer. In 2010, after a long career as a secondary and tertiary educator, she completed a doctoral thesis that analysed three iconic settler representations of Aboriginal Australians. Jeanine’s first volume of poetry, Dark Secrets After Dreaming: AD 1887-1961 (2010) won the Scanlon Prize for Indigenous Poetry. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals such as 'Hecate' and the Australian Book Review. Her manuscript, Purple Threads won the David Unaipon Award at the 2010 Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards and was shortlisted for the 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize and the 2012 Victorian Premier’s Award for Indigenous Writing.
Jessica L. Wilkinson is the author of two long form poetry works--Marionette: A Biography of Miss Marion Davies (2012) and Suite for Percy Grainger: a biography (2014), both with Vagabond Press. She is working on a third manuscript, on choreographer George Balanchine. In 2014 she won the ABR Peter Porter Poetry Prize, as well as a Marten Bequest Award for Poetry, and was shortlisted for the NSW Premier's Prize for Poetry. Jessica is the Editor-in-Chief of Rabbit: a journal for nonfiction poetry and a Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing at RMIT University.
My moniker is JiveSwallow. I don't know why. Basically, if a song comes into my head and inspires me, I chase it down and try to give it life and a home. Subconscious Verse, I've almost called it on occasions. But that's not true either. Melody and atmosphere drive and ride shotgun, often changing seats mid journey. Entertainment is as good as a holiday. No matter what the weather. That must be eighty words I guess.
Joanne Arnott is a Canadian Métis/mixed-blood writer & arts activist, originally from Manitoba, at home on the west coast. Wiles of Girlhood won the League of Canadian Poets’ Gerald Lampert Award in 1992. She has published essays and poetry in many anthologies, and eight further books, including Halfling spring: an internet romance (Kegedonce, 2014), A Night for the Lady (Ronsdale, 2013), Mother Time (Ronsdale, 2007), and Steepy mountain love poetry (Kegedonce, 2004). Past volunteer with Aboriginal Writers Collective West Coast, The Writers Union of Canada, and The Writers’ Trust, she is currently the Poetry Editor for Event magazine.
Joseph Simington is a poet and rapper from Brisbane. His poems have been published by Pressure Gauge Press, Semper UQ, & Symposium Poetry Society (of which he is currently vice president). Joseph has featured at Ruckus Slam, Bad!Slam!No!Memoir!, Solidarity Kulture Club, & Below Deck Poetry. As a rapper, he has performed alongside Melbourne emcee Kudos, for Street Groove Urban Dance, and in July 2016 will perform at TedxUQ. You can find him neck deep in poetry books, pumping the new De La Soul single, and eating caramel slice.
Jordie Albiston has published nine poetry collections. Two of her books – Botany Bay Document (Black Pepper: 1996) and The Hanging of Jean Lee (Black Pepper: 1998) – have been adapted for music-theatre, both enjoying seasons at the Sydney Opera House. Jordie's most recent titles are The Weekly Poem: 52 exercises in closed & open forms (Puncher & Wattmann: 2014) and Jack & Mollie (& Her) (UQP: 2016). Her work has won many awards, including the 2010 NSW Premier's Prize. Jordie has an ongoing pre-occupation with mathematical constructs and constraints, and the possibilities offered in terms of poetic structure. She lives in Melbourne.
Justin Clemens lives in Melbourne. He writes poetry, art reviews, and illegible commentaries on contemporary philosophy. He was recently introduced at a conference as a Happiness Entrepreneur, but this turned out to be a case of mistaken identity. His poetry books include Villain (Hunter Publishers 2009) and The Mundiad (Hunter Publishers 2013). He is currently struggling to complete another collection.
Karina Hogan is the Deputy Chair of ATSICHS Brisbane, one of the largest Indigenous community organisations in Queensland, proudly community controlled and managed. Hailing from Brisbane and she is part of a big Aboriginal and Islander family. Her working background is in journalism and communications with a passion for developing content for multimedia platforms including social media. She currently works as a content producer at ABC and is a freelance journalist.
Krissy Kneen is the award winning author of the memoir Affection, the novels The Adventures of Holly White and the Incredible Sex Machine, Steeplechase, Triptych and the Thomas Shapcott Award winning poetry collection Eating My Grandmother. She has written and directed broadcast documentaries for SBS and ABC television.
Laura Kenny is a PhD candidate at QUT who writes autobiographical poetry when she is not researching and writing about the relationship between childhood trauma and place. In 2013 she won the inaugural QUT poetry prize, and she has read her work at various venues throughout QLD.
Liam Ferney’s most recent collection is Content (Hunter Publishing). His previous collection, Boom (Grand Parade Poets), was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Poetry Prize and the Queensland Poetry Prize. He is a media manager, poet and aspiring left back living in Brisbane, Australia.
Eelahroo (Long Ago) Nyah (Looking) Möbö-Möbö (Future) is the most recent collection from Australia’s foremost experimental and political poet and one of the best known contemporary Aboriginal Australian writers, Lionel G. Fogarty. Lionel is a Yugambeh man, born on Wakka Wakka land in South Western Queensland near Murgon on a ‘punishment reserve’ outside Cherbourg. Throughout the 1970s, he worked as an activist for Aboriginal Land Rights and protesting Aboriginal deaths in custody. In 1993, his younger brother, Daniel Yock, died while in police custody. He has published numerous collections of poetry, including the award-winning Connection Requital and Mogwie-Idan: Stories of the land.
Manna Marvel is an educator, creator and craftivist. She won the inaugural QPF Arts Queensland XYZ prize for Innovation in Spoken Word in 2015. Here she troubles sites of labour / exchange and bio / determinism, with a view to space / travel and a mothership connection.
Matt Hetherington is a writer, music-maker, and moderate self-promoter living in Brisbane. He has been writing poetry for over 30 years, and has published 4 poetry collections and over 300 poems. His first all-haiku/senryu collection ‘For Instance’ was published in March 2015 by Mulla Mulla Press. He is also on the board of the Australian Haiku Society.
Praised for her abstract lyricism, curious song structures, and entrancing live shows, Helen Franzmann has been writing and releasing music as McKisko since 2008. She was awarded the Grant McLennan Fellowship for excellence in song writing in 2010, providing her with time to develop her music abroad in Berlin. She has shared the bill with Tiny Vipers, Juana Molina, Jose Gonzales, Bon Iver and J. Mascis. McKisko's third album will be released in 2017.
Meg (Gem backwards) Bartholomew is one of Ruckus Slam’s most enigmatic hosts. Well known for her questionable humour, positive crowd heckling and melismatic soprano solos there is no need to look the definition of a Baller. Meg is a Baller. From set design through to event facilitation, Meg is the director of some of Ruckus Slam’s most exciting moments. She has produced with Ruckus for over two years and is an emerging workshop facilitator.
Melissa Lucashenko is an award-winning novelist who lives between Brisbane and the Bundjalung nation. Melissa’s most recent novel, Mullumbimby, was awarded the 2013 Deloitte Queensland Literary Award for Fiction, won the 2014 Victorian Premiers Prize for Indigenous Writing, and was longlisted for both the Stella and Miles Franklin awards. Mullumbimby was also longlisted for the Dublin IMPAC Literary Prize 2015.
Melissa is a Walkley Award winner for her non-fiction, as well as a founding member of Sisters Inside. www.melissalucashenko.com.au
Mindy Gill is stress-eating her way through her Honours year at QUT. She writes poetry, and is interested in food and cultural belonging within the Asian-Australian identity. Her work has appeared in the Australian Poetry Journal and Hecate.
Métis multidisciplinary artist Moe Clark is a nomadic songbird with wings woven from circle singing and spoken word. Mistress of the looping pedal, she creates sonic landscapes of layered voice. Her work as an artistic producer stems from her desire to find intersections for collaborations: intercultural, intergenerational and interdisciplinary in nature. Moe has two albums of words and music and a bilingual book of poetry. She co-directed Transcestral; a musical exchange between Indigenous musical traditions of Pow Wow, drum song and throat singing with Gnawa and Sufi trance music (First Peoples Festival 2015). In 2013 she directed the 10th Annual Canadian Festival of Spoken Word in Montreal, highlighting Indigenous languages and in 2011 she co-created the award winning Bird Messengers theatre performance with Émilie Monnet. Her nêhiyawêwin lullaby “nitahkôtân” won best music video at ImagiNative Film Festival in 2015.
Morganics is an award winning Hip Hop artist, director and community worker. An MC, Bboy, beatboxer, producer and Hip Hop Theatre artist he has performed from New York to Tanzania, the Sydney Opera House to Prague. His extensive work with indigenous communities includes The Wilcannia Mob's "Down River" which he remixed for MIA's album "Kala". He is the 2016 Freestyle Rap Games Champion of Melbourne and his Hip Hop feature film, "Survival Tactics", and album "For My Friends And My Enemies" are out now. His new show and book "Hip Hop Is My Passport" is out soon.
Natalie Harkin is a Narungga woman from the Chester family in South Australia. She is an academic and activist-poet, and her PhD research is an archival-poetic interrogation of the state’s Aboriginal records. Her words have been installed and projected in exhibitions comprising text-object-video projection. She is part of the Unbound Collective, a group of Aboriginal women collaborating through research, exhibitions and performance projections through Adelaide’s 'cultural precinct', including a 'Sovereign-Love-Poem' series of bus-shelter posters in the CBD. She is a column writer for Overland and her first collection of poetry, Dirty Words, was published by Cordite Books in 2015.
Natalie Catalan is a poet, student, mass consumer of all things potato based and winner of QPF’s SlammED 2015. Nurtured by only the warmest of smiles nestled in the crooks of her high school, her romance with writing ignited after watching a bearded man talk about his feeling when she was 15. Once only for assignments, she now writes to turn hazy things solid and solid things hazy- a cycling of dreams.
Phil Brown is a Brisbane journalist and author. He is arts editor of The Courier-Mail and has a popular weekly column in the lifestyle magazine Brisbane News. He is the author of two books of verse – Plastic Parables (Metro Community Press) and An Accident in the Evening (Interactive Press). His book of humorous travel stories, Travels with My Angst (UQP, 2004) was short-listed for the Arts Queensland Steele Rudd Award at the 2005 Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards. Any Guru Will Do (UQP 2006) was the second in his memoir series.
Taking out a Queensland Music Award for his snapshot of Brisbane's nightlife in “The Valley”, Rainman first became known to Brisbane audiences as a DJ as part of the Drop Zone DJ collective. Continually flipping back and forth between mic, production and DJing, Rainman has also toured the country and even ended up in Seoul, Korea in DJ mode. Along the way he's copped some hefty praise: Urthboy hailed the MC as ‘…destined to become a positive and very listenable force’. OzHipHop.Com dubbed the MC as Queensland's ‘best-kept secret’.
Pooja Nansi is the author of two collections of poetry, Stiletto Scars and Love is an Empty Barstool. She has edited an anthology of Singaporean Poetry and designed extensive teacher’s resources for Singaporean poetry. She curates a monthly spoken word and poetry showcase called Speakeasy which plays to packed audiences and runs Burn After Reading a collective started for young, emerging poets. Her one woman show You Are Here was showcased as part of the Esplanade’s Studios season for 2016. She is currently the National Arts Council Writer-in- Residence at the Nanyang Technological University
Rebecca Jessen lives in Toowoomba; she is the award-winning author of Gap (UQP, 2014). Rebecca is the winner of the 2015 QLD Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Award. Her writing has been published in Meanjin, The Lifted Brow, Cordite and more.
Ricky Pascoe from Ngarabal Darug tribes NSW, described as a freedom fighter and an activist. His poetry is based on messages from his ancestors.
Robert Sullivan’s nine books include the bestselling Star Waka (Auckland UP, 1999). Recent collections include Captain Cook in the Underworld, Voice Carried My Family, Cassino City of Martyrs, and Shout Ha! to the Sky (Salt). He also wrote a graphic novel, a prize-winning children’s book, and an oratorio with composer John Psathas. Robert’s poem ‘Kawe Reo / Voices Carry’ is installed in bronze in front of the Auckland City Library. Robert belongs to the Māori tribes Ngāpuhi and Kai Tahu, and is also of Irish descent. He is Head of Creative Writing at Manukau Institute of Technology.
Ruth Gardner has been a musician, performance artist, radio announcer & producer for over two decades, which is quite incredible for someone who has only just celebrated her 21st birthday. A Queensland finalist in the RAW comedy competition (2013) and two time winner of The Brisbane Pride Festival Media Personality of the Year Award (2014/2016) ,you can all but guarantee she will bring comedy & personality to everything from a funeral to jury duty. Her sell out Brisbane Powerhouse Melt Festival show 'Ruth: The Musical', did not receive any reviews as she is largely regarded as an enigma with many doubting her actually existence.
Samuel Wagan Watson is an award-winning Indigenous poet and raconteur from the south-side of Brisbane and comes from a family of accomplished writers and artists. Born in Brisbane in 1972, he is of Munanjali, Birri Gubba, German and Irish descent. Samuel’s first collection of poems won the 1998 David Unaipon Award. His fourth collection,Smoke Encrypted Whispers won the 2005 NSW Premier’s Award for the Book of the Year and the Kenneth Slessor poetry prize. Samuel has toured Australia extensively as a writer, has been a writer-in-residence at a number of institutions and has toured New Zealand, Germany and Norway to promote his work. He latest collection is Love Poems and Death Threats (UQP.)
Sarah Holland-Batt’s most recent book is The Hazards (UQP, 2015), which was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Kenneth Slessor Prize, the John Bray Memorial Award and the West Australian Premier’s Literary Awards. She is the editor of The Best Australian Poems 2016 (Black Inc), and works as a Senior Lecturer at QUT and as the Poetry Editor of Island.
The School of Hard Knocks, led by Dr Jonathon Welch AM, was launched in Queensland in 2015 to create an iconic arts institute that fosters the participation of disadvantaged Australians in the mainstream cultural life of the nation. This includes the creative writing group, Word on the Street, who will be performing for the first time their undeniable view of life via short form pieces and poetry.schoolofhardknocks.org.au
Seamus Kirkpatrick is a long-time Brisbane based multi-instrumentalist, writer, composer and teacher. He is a prolific creator who currently performs publicly as King Colossus with material ranging from improvised noise and spoken word to straight pop, soundtrack work and composition for medium sized ensembles.
Simon Kindt is a Brisbane poet & teacher who is working on building a youth spoken-word community in Queensland. In collaboration with Chloe Callistemon, he published the collection air / tide in 2014, he published the verse novella no revelation in 2015 and, along with Bill Moran, is co-author of the recently released wreck / age.
Steven Oliver is a descendant of the Kuku-Yalanji, Waanyi, Gangalidda, Woppaburra, Bundjalung and Biripi (in other words, biggest mob) peoples. He was born in Cloncurry in North West Queensland and grew up in Townsville before moving to Perth to study performing arts. He has worked with numerous theatre companies and arts organisations across Australia but became notorious with ABC’s hit sketch show Black Comedy as a writer/actor/associate producer. He is also a playwright and poet and will soon have his play Proppa (Proper) Solid published by Playlab Press. He currently works fulltime at the Brisbane Indigenous Media Association as its Creative Director.
Stuart Cooke’s books include works of poetry, criticism and translation. His next collection of poems, Opera, is forthcoming from Five Islands Press at the end of the year. He lives on the Gold Coast, where he lectures in creative writing and literary studies at Griffith University.
Stuart Barnes was born in Hobart, Tasmania. Gwen Harwood befriended him in the late 1980s, at All Saints Church, South Hobart; there, she’d slip slim volumes of verse into his trouser pockets and insist he read and write poetry. Educated at Monash University, Barnes now lives in Central Queensland and has been Poetry Editor for Tincture Journal since 2013. His manuscript The Staysails won the 2015 Thomas Shapcott Prize, resulting in the publication of his first book, Glasshouses (UQP, 2016.
Australia’s first ever Hip Hop feature film by Morganics. Released early from jail, MC and guitarist, Jet (Wire MC) attempts to reunite with his girlfriend, emerging Hip Hop dancer, Rosa (Demi Sorono). Jet's foster brother, Fury (Morganics) has spiralled into homelessness and drug addiction, scoring from Jet's rival, DJ Rich (Bboy Jay). Now their rivalry comes to a head when Jet discovers that Rosa has been rehearsing with DJ Rich to host his upcoming all star Hip Hop jam. Based on the critically acclaimed Hip Hop Theatre production which culminated in standing ovations at The Sydney Opera House, "Survival Tactics" unites the freshest Bboys, Bgirls, free runners, DJs, MCs, spoken word, graffiti and street artists in a powerful journey through the struggles of the modern metropolis.
Tenzin Choegyal’s international award-winning music has been described as “beautifully evocative,” “healing,” “poetic,” “mesmerizing,” “spine-tingling,” and “transcendent.” His music reflects his nomadic roots and his love for his homeland. Tenzin Choegyal draws on his traditional Tibetan roots to create original compositions that express his cultural lineage. His award-winning poetic songs have found a place in the complex tapestry of global music Tenzin feels a particular connection to the music of his homeland. He recalls his father’s mastery of the lingbu (transverse bamboo flute) and his mother’s beautiful singing voice and attributes much of his passion to those early influences. Tenzin is the founder, organizer, and creative force behind the Brisbane Festival of Tibet.
Ian Powne and Pascalle Burton both play in The Stress of Leisure, a band which was formed over a decade ago and has put out 5 albums to critical acclaim. The last Stress of Leisure album 'Achievement' was listed in the Courier Mail's top ten albums for 2015. When Dave Graney describes you as "weird and freaky in the most positive ways" you must be doing something right. Ian and Pascalle occasionally play as a duo, although it feels like a totally different entity. More like top deck entertainment on a P&O cruise
The Viola Cloning Project is a solo improvising act in which loop recorders and other effects pedals multiply a single viola into a full string and percussion orchestra. The brainchild of Brisbane-based composer and multi-instrumentalist Richard Grantham, the VCP explores broad stylistic territory with classical, folk, popular, cabaret, and experimental roots, encompassing genres from delicate ambience to dirty blues and everything in between. The VCP also frequently engages in cross-disciplinary collaborations, to date including spoken word, film, puppetry, and physical theatre.
Theresa Creed is an elder of the Kalkadoon and Pitta Pitta nations. She has previously performed as a contemporary dancer, actor and singer/songwriter. In recent years she has been writing poems and performing with the Kurilpa Poets.
Tishani Doshi is a Welsh-Indian poet, novelist and dancer. Her debut collection of poetry, Countries of the Body, won the Forward Prize in 2006. She also won the All-India Poetry Competition, and her work has been widely anthologized and translated into several languages. Since 2001 she has worked with the Chandralekha dance troupe in Madras, India. www.tishanidoshi.com
Toby Fitch is poetry editor of Overland and program director for the Australian Poets Festival. He also works as a bookseller, a teacher of creative writing at the University of Sydney, and runs the Sappho Books poetry night. His books of poetry include Rawshock (Puncher & Wattmann 2012), which won the Grace Leven Prize for Poetry, Jerilderies (Vagabond Press 2014) and The Bloomin’ Notions of Other & Beau (Vagabond 2016). He lives in Newtown, Sydney.
Torrey Atkin is a Brisbane-based writer, photographer and scholar with a keen interest in gender identity, queerness and the literary depictions of madness. Currently, he is completing his Honours thesis on the works of Virginia Woolf at The University of Queensland.
Tracy K. Smith is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Ordinary Light (Knopf, 2015) and three books of poetry. Her collection Life on Mars won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book. Duende won the 2006 James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets and an Essence Literary Award. The Body’s Question was the winner of the 2002 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. Smith was the recipient of a Rona Jaffe Writers Award in 2004 and a Whiting Award in 2005. In 2014 the Academy of American Poets awarded Smith with the Academy Fellowship, awarded to one poet each year to recognize distinguished poetic achievement.She is currently the Director of Princeton University’s Creative Writing Program.
V-T-R (Van T Rudd), visual artist and social justice activist, loves telling stories through 2D drawings, paintings, 3D sculptures and performances. He makes his often controversial art in support of various social justice campaigns such as refugee rights, Aboriginal Rights, Black Lives Matter and anti-war campaigns. He is organiser of the notorious #RichForks exhibition which sources dinner forks recently used by the 1% (retaining their saliva and crumbs), and his hyper-real street sculptures are making waves around the world. He also has just designed images for a children’s book with author Maxine Beneba Clarke, forthcoming in 2016.
Waverley is a poet writer and actor. When asked where he grew up, he recollects that he basically grew up in a square. Travelling between his mum who lived in Noosa. His dad in Mount Tamborine. His sisters in Ipswich and Toowoomba Grammar School where he boarded since the age of 12. Waverley has no formal training in poetry but when he writes he tries to write as close to the truth as possible about whichever subject. In the near future he plans to go to university and study Creative Writing and Business and continue exploring what he is capable of.
Wire MC, an MC and guitarist, is a Gumbayngirri descendant hailing from Bowraville, NSW. As well as performing at venues and festivals around the country, including Homebake, WOMadeliade, Yabun and the Dreaming Festival, Wire MC travels to remote communities around Australia conducting hip hop workshops for young Indigenous people. Wire MC sees hip hop as the "new corroboree" for young Indigenous Australians, who are looking for a way to express themselves and their culture in a positive way.
Yasmin Smith is an emerging writer, poet and editor. She currently works as part of the black&write! Indigenous Writing and Editing Project based at the State Library of Queensland, Brisbane. In 2012, she graduated from QUT with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. She was shortlisted for the QUT Creative Writing Prize, and has published short fiction in literary journals and anthologies including Writing Black: New Indigenous Writing from Australia. Yasmin has read her work at literary events such as the Emerging Writers’ Festival, Avid Reader and Whispers salons.
Zenobia Frost is a Brisbane-based poet whose work has appeared in Overland, Cordite, The Lifted Brow, ARC and Voiceworks. In 2015, an ArtStart grant allowed her to study the contours of confessional writing with Warsan Shire and — in the Black Forest’s University of Freiburg — with Roxane Gay and Adrianne Kalfopoulou.