Festival Program


I Don’t Want You Back

Sat 7 Sep, 2.30pm
The Toff in Town

Make peace, let go and give the past a solid kick out the door at MWF19’s Divorce Court.

While it’s healthy to stay friends with some ex-lovers, there are others who should never darken your door again. Four survivors read a piece drawing a line between them and a toxic former experience. Featuring Aretha Brown, Sacha Horler, Osamah Sami, and Maria Tumarkin.


1 hour

Available on Pass


Session Artists

Aretha Brown is an Indigenous Australian youth activist, visual artist, painter and the former Prime Minister of the National Indigenous Youth Parliament. Aretha made headlines following her speeches at both the 2017 and 2018 Invasion Day Protests in Melbourne, calling for the national "holiday" to be changed.

Sacha Horler is one of Australia’s most loved and respected actors. She had the unprecedented joy of winning two AFI awards on one night for the lead role in Praise and supporting role in Soft Fruit. She won her third AFI award for best supporting actress in Travelling Light.

Osamah Sami is an Australian actor, writer, and comedian, born in war-torn Iran to Iraqi parents. Multi-award winning for both stage and screen. Osamah is the writer and star of the smash-hit rom-com Ali’s Wedding and his critically acclaimed memoir Good Muslim Boy was a winner of the NSW Premier’s Literary Award.

Maria Tumarkin writes books, essays, reviews, and pieces for performance and radio; she collaborates with sound and visual artists. Her latest book, Axiomatic (Brow Books), won the 2018 Melbourne Prize for Literature’s Best Writing Award and was shortlisted for the Stella Prize.

More sessions like this one


Muses of Music

Sat 7 Sep, 11.30am

Who owns the story of an affair ­– the musician or the muse? Clare Bowditch talks with Cash Savage and Amy Middleton, along with Harry James Angus and Emily Lubitz.

Free Wishlist

What’s the science behind the delicious chemicals released in our body when we fall in love – and are songwriters right?


Madame Brussels’ Melbourne

Thu 5 Sep, 1pm

Archaeologist Sarah Hayes and historian Barbara Minchinton discuss their research on Little Lon, Melbourne's 19th century sex work precinct.


A Swelling in his Loins

Sun 8 Sep, 1pm

Engorged flesh is the beating pulse of many romance novels and says a lot about the genre. Four experts unpack its role.