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2024 Hazel Rowley Literary Fellowship Panel & Announcement



Mandy Sayer and Adolfo Aranjuez




Join us for this special biography event featuring a panel discussion on Those Dashing McDonagh Sisters: Australia’s first female filmmaking team, followed by the announcement of the Hazel Rowley Literary Fellowship 2024 winner.
Mandy Sayer and Adolfo Aranjuez


The Hazel Rowley Literary Fellowship and Writers Victoria invite you to join us for a special biography event on Wednesday 13 March 2024 at the Wheeler Centre, Melbourne.

Preceding the announcement of this year’s Fellow, Mandy Sayer will be in discussion with Adolfo Aranjuez about her biography Those Dashing McDonagh Sisters: Australia’s first female filmmaking team (NewSouth Books, 2022). These three extraordinary sisters wrote, directed and acted in their own silent movies – forming their own film production company.

Between 1926 and 1933 the McDonagh sisters produced four feature films and transformed Australian cinema from outback films to urban modernity. Paulette, the youngest, was one of only five women film directors in the world, Phyllis produced and directed, and Isabel, the eldest, acted superbly in all the female leads.

The conversation will include clips from the McDonagh sisters’ films as restored by the National Film and Sound Archive.

Mandy Sayer is an award-winning biographer, novelist and memoirist. She was awarded the 2021 Hazel Rowley Literary Fellowship for her book on the McDonagh sisters. Since the biography was published in 2022, it has been widely applauded and was shortlisted for the 2023 Age Book of the Year for Non-Fiction.

Adolfo Aranjuez is an editor, writer, speaker and dancer. He is the Publications and Audience Development Manager at the Melbourne International Film Festival, and the Publication Editor at Liminal.

This is a free event but bookings are essential.

You can find details of how Covid-19 restrictions will affect the workshop here: https://writersvictoria.org.au/about-us/covid-19-information/. You are encouraged to wear a mask in the workshop space. The Wheeler Centre’s policy is that close contacts should not attend the building. If you are a close contact of somebody with Covid-19, or have Covid-19 symptoms yourself, please do not attend; please contact [email protected] to arrange a refund in this situation.

Cancellation Policy


176 Little Lonsdale Street
3000 Australia


Phone: (03) 9917 8463
Email: [email protected]

Registration for this event ended on 13 March 2024 - 12:00
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