Within Reach Gala

Within Reach Gala

After a year to forget, an all-star line-up of guests comes together for the Sydney Writers’ Festival Gala to deliver a speech on this year’s theme, Within Reach.

This centrepiece event celebrates the power of writing to generate empathy, imagination and action during times of unparalleled change. Speakers look ahead with humour and hope to what could be ours to grasp with the right focus, ideas and words. Featuring Tony Birch, Geraldine Brooks (via video), Trent Dalton, Ceridwen Dovey, Adam Goodes, Alison Lester, Fiona McGregor, Sisonke Msimang, Michael O’Loughlin, Christos Tsiolkas, Maria Tumarkin and Ellen van Neerven.

This event is Auslan interpreted.

Supported by the City of Sydney. Thanks to David Paradice.

Tony Birch (Australian)

Tony Birch is the author of the bestselling The White Girl, winner of 2020 NSW Premier’s Award for Indigenous Writing and shortlisted for the 2020 Miles Franklin Award; Ghost River, winner of the 2016 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for Indigenous Writing; and Blood, shortlisted for the 2012 Miles Franklin Award. He is also the author of four short-story collections Shadowboxing, Father’s Day, The Promise and Common People. In 2017, he was awarded the Patrick White Literary Award.

Maria Tumarkin (Australian)

Maria Tumarkin writes books, essays, reviews, and pieces for performance and radio. She also collaborates with sound and visual artists, and has had her work engraved into the paving at Victoria Harbour as part of the Melbourne Docklands Urban Art Program. Maria is the author of four books of ideas. Her fourth (and latest) book Axiomatic was named by The New Yorker as one of the best books of 2019. Maria is a recipient of the 2020 Windham Campbell Prize in the category of non-fiction. She holds a PhD in cultural history and teaches in the creative writing program at the University of Melbourne.

Trent Dalton (Australian)

Trent Dalton is a two-time Walkley Award–winning journalist for Weekend Australian Magazine. His number one bestselling debut novel, Boy Swallows Universe, broke records to become the fastest selling Australian debut novel ever and it has been published globally across 34 territories. It is currently being adapted for stage and screen. His latest novel, All Our Shimmering Skies, was published in September, 2020 and became an instant number one bestseller on release.

Christos Tsiolkas (Australian)

Christos Tsiolkas is the author of six novels, including Dead Europe, Loaded and Barracuda. His novel The Slap won Overall Best Book in the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize 2009, was shortlisted for the 2009 Miles Franklin Literary Award, longlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize, won the Australian Literary Society Gold Medal, and was announced as the 2009 Australian Booksellers Association and Australian Book Industry Awards Books of the Year. Many of his books have been adapted for film, TV and for the stage. Christos is also a playwright, essayist and film critic for The Saturday Paper. His latest novel is Damascus.

This event is part of Sydney Writers Festival 2021


  • 30 Apr - 30 Apr, 21
  • Regular price $50.00 $20.00 Playwave Price

  • All Ages
  • Sydney Town Hall
    483 George Street
    Sydney NSW 2000

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