5 Local Legends That’ll Inspire You at All About Women 2024


In a city as culturally rich as Sydney, there’s always so much going on. This means it can be hard to ascertain what the hottest ticket in town is when at any given moment.

But, in March, the hottest ticket is indisputably Sydney Opera House’s centrepiece talks event All About Women. The annual event, held during the week of International Women’s Day, explores the rich conversations taking place within contemporary feminism and always boasts a stellar lineup of both local legends and international icons.

But don’t just take our word for it — the talks and panels speak for themselves.

Here are our picks for five unmissable local legends speaking at this year’s All About Women on Sunday March 10.

Chanel Contos

Credit: Weronika Mamot

Contos hardly needs an introduction. The founder of the Teach Us Consent movement, a campaign that helped mandate consent education in Australia, Contos has been persistent in eradicating rape culture both at home in Australia and abroad.

Contos will bring the insights of her policy and advocacy work in Is It Time To Rethink Porn? moderated by Jess Hill, one of Australia’s most recognised and respected thinkers on gendered violence. Exploring the relationship between porn, patriarchy, feminism and sexual liberation, don’t miss Contos at what promises to be a captivating session.

Jan Fran

Credit: Monica Pronk

If you haven’t already encountered Walkley-award-winning journalist Jan Fran, Feminist Roast will be the perfect introduction. One of Australia’s most engaging, and funniest,  social commentators, Fran is no stranger to comedic dissection. Being a TV and podcast regular, her legacy is skewering Australian society and forcing us to face its injustices.

Moderated by Steph Tisdell, and also featuring Jane Caro, Zoë Coombs-Marr, Michelle Law and Nakkiah Lui, the panel event will see All About Women go meta, featuring loving and hilarious pisstakes of feminism itself.

Tickets to Feminist Roast are available here.

Moreblessing Maturure

Credit: Supplied

Feeling global political disillusionment? Join interdisciplinary creative Moreblessing Maturure as she explores art’s role beyond politics. In conversation with Suzy Wrong, they will discuss the power of creatives in The Stories We Need Now and politics can confine them.

Maturure is uniquely placed to speak on storytelling’s power to ignite socio-political change given her extensive breadth of experience. She works as dramaturg, consultant and advocate for anti-racist, inclusive practices while sitting on MEAA’s National Performers Committee. As a creative, she’s also held residencies at Playwriting Australia, ATYP and STC. On top of that, she’s participated in Screen Australia’s Developing the Developer and join Kojo Studios as an Associate Development Producer, develop the Bruntwood Prize shortlisted No Pink Dicks, and appeared in critically acclaimed projects across stage and screen.

It’d be hard to find someone better to break down this topic, and she’ll do just that at All About Women.

Mary McGillivray

Credit: Supplied

Where do you pick up new ideas? Who gets to determine the agenda of the day? Panel talk Influencers Are The New Public Intellectuals aims to explore why influencers are now thought leaders, for better or worse. Moderated by Bri Lee, this panel will feature insight from Larissa Behrendt, Hannah Ferguson, Sisonke Msimang and Mary McGillivray.

Mary McGillivray stands out as a content creator who is making visual culture analysis for the next generation. She’s incredibly well-equipped to do so too, holding a Masters degree in History of Art and Architecture from the University of Cambridge, and currently completing a PhD at the University of Melbourne.

Steph Tisdell

Credit: Monica Pronk

We’re in an age of media right now where we’re often seeing women break the rules of womenhood. But who exactly gets to break those rules, and get away with it? Not women of colour, and especially not Black and First Nations women.

Expect laughter, introspection, and a healthy dose of truth as comedian Steph Tisdell navigates the complexities and constraints of identity, representation, Indigenous excellence, and the cultural expectation of perfection in women, in conversation with rapper Barkaa in Who Gets To Be Bad?.

A proud Ydinji woman, Tisdell’s one of the brightest stars to explode on the Australian comedy scene in recent years. She won the Deadly Funny National Grand Final in 2014 and has since appeared on screen and radio as a comedian and as an actor. Grab tickets for this groundbreaking conversation below.

Explore the full All About Women festival program here and join in on a day of captivating conversations on gender, justice, and equality.

Related: Everything You Need to Know About Sydney Opera House’s 2024 All About Women Festival

Related: Here’s Your Personalised Guide to All About Women 2024

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