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Byron Writers Festival 2021 full program announced

Byron Writers Festival has revealed the full program for its 2021 event, which runs the weekend of 6–8 August at various locations throughout Byron Bay, NSW.

In its 25th year, the festival features over 150 writers including Archie Roach, Richard Flanagan, Craig Silvey, Judith Lucy, Kitty Flanagan, Chigozie Obioma, Kate Grenville, Melissa Lucashenko, Arnold Zable, Marcia Langton, Pip Williams, Mirandi Riwoe and Jock Serong. They join previously announced guests Julia Baird, Tony Birch, Alice Pung, Malcolm Turnbull, Evelyn Araluen and Hayley Katzen.

The first day of the festival features over 35 sessions including an ‘Ethics and Medicine’ panel with pandemic commentator Norman Swan; a session with the comedy team behind The Betoota Advocate; and the inaugural Mungo Panel, named in honour of the late Mungo MacCallum, hosted by Barrie Cassidy featuring Kerry O’Brien, Karen Middleton and Margaret Simons.

On the Saturday, Judy Atkinson, academic and author of Trauma Trails, Recreating Song Lines (Spinifex Press), will give the annual Thea Astley Keynote Address, while the Sunday morning Kids Big Day Out program features Tristan Bancks, Isobelle Carmody, Kirli Saunders, Dub Leffler, Davina Bell, Ursula Duborsarsky and Will Kostakis.

‘Now more than ever our world needs writers and stories for healing,’ said festival director Edwina Johnson. ‘At the core of our festival is the belief in the power of story as a means to connect, heal and make change. Story provides the framework for understanding. Never more so than when we are faced with the shock of a pandemic that has insisted we learn new ways of being and engaging.’

The 2020 Byron Writers Festival was cancelled due to the pandemic, with some content delivered online. The festival has since received federal Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) funding.

Tickets to the festival are on sale now. For more information see the Byron Writers Festival website.


Category: Local news