A citizens’ assembly.
A curatorial match making project across words, intention and representation.
A series of first speeches from those often unheard.
Personal visions for our collective future.
In Australia, fuelled by conservative politicians and media commentators, the darkest side of nationalism has led to the public vilification of immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, Muslims, First Nations People, and – by extension – anyone considered ‘foreign’ or ‘other’.
Congress, intentionally works against stereotypical representations of the ‘other’ by providing a platform for direct address to the public. It puts faces and names and stories to ‘difference’, subverting dominant narratives of what it means to be living in contemporary society and our hugely inter-connected world.
This citizens’ assembly connects the personal with the political. Community citizen Speakers are matched with professional Wordsmiths. Together, they collaborate to write and deliver ‘first political speeches’; personal visions for our collective future. Taking the form of a ritualised performance, intersected with community and cultural dance, this project unashamedly encourages citizens to agitate for change and transformation.
Created by All The Queens Men.
Wyndham City Council Chambers. Presented by Wyndham City, Arts and Culture Saturday 7 September
Featuring – Hannah Bradsworth, Les Sanderson, Aimee McCartney, Pamela Kennedy, Erum Ali, Damon Paraha, Jack Measham, Jumess Dinanga, Words by – Fatima Measham, David Wells, wāni Le Frère, Grace Vanilau, Paola Balla, Eugenia Flynn, Roger Monk and Demet Divaroren. Dancers – Brent Watkins, Anosha Ali, L2R Dance, Nga Uri Whaioranga, Tama Tatau, Georgette Mofalesi (Afro Fever), Bec Reid and Tristan Meecham
CREATIVE TEAM Composer, Lighting and Sound Designer: Nick Roux, Production Manager, Lighting Designer, Consultant: Ben (Bosco) Shaw, Stage Manager: Leo Gester, Audio Description: Will McRostie, Description Victoria, Auslan Interpreters: Benji Hoopmann and Glenda Judd, Auslan Stage Left, Wyndham City Council: Trish Carlon, Photography: Bryony Jackson. Filming: Singing Bowl Media
Darwin Festival, Northern Territory Parliament, Saturday 25 August
Creative Team Tristan Meecham, Bec Reid, Nick Roux, Bosco Shaw, Vanessa Wright. Stage Manager Rory Cadman
Speakers: Charlie King, Evan Keith, Jade Jones-Cubillo, Mark Brustolin, Nadem Turkia, Rebecca Hell, Rosa Norman Muller, Sophie Kuswadi, Wordsmiths: Roger Monk, Jill Pope, Matt Heffernan, Philip Tarl Denson, Sam Carmody, Tania Lieman, Thomas Moorhead, Varunika Ruwanpura, Dancers: Express Studios, Kayoko, Sytha Routh, Ryoko Jones, Kayoko, Erma Muller
Melbourne Fringe Festival / Darebin Arts – Closing Event Northcote Town Hall.
Creation / Direction: All The Queens Men (Tristan Meecham and Bec Reid).
Lighting / Sound Design: Nick Roux.
Speakers: Vidya Rajan, Keira Leike, Helen Bayes, Ethan Pham, Davey Thompson, Hannah Murphy Walsh, Buster Murphy, Geraldine Cook, Ezeldin Deng, Barry T. Nguyen. Wordsmiths: Benjamin Law, Suzie Miller, Melanie Joosten, Richard Watts, Roger Monk, Carly Findlay, Alia Gabres, Cynthia Troup, Solomon Salew, Terry Barnes. Dancers: Lorna Hannan, Tama Tatau, Jungle City Studios, Orlando and Juno de Zwart, Wade Sera-Matiara aka Flyoi.
Stage Management: Rory Cadman.