In this series of seven events (yes, at 11am) audiences will be treated to some of the best thinking in generations.

7 @ 11 will give new insight into the work of artists already featured in this year’s Castlemaine State Festival, together with our best and brightest raconteurs, thinkers and authors.  Grab a coffee and a slice of cake, and enjoy a smorgasbord of generous talk.  Prepare for passionate conversation about matters that matter.

Questions are welcomed and book signings will be held afterwards, where relevant.

Saturday 18 March

7@11: I would do anything for love, but I won’t do that
Doug Falconer, Carl Panuzzo and Jenny Valentish

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This light-hearted look at lyrics that linger kicks off our fabulous series of morning conversations. Panellists include Doug Falconer, drummer with Hunters and Collectors and co-author of the anthemic Throw Your Arms Around Me, and Carl Pannuzzo, highly respected songwriter, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist and educator. Joined by rock journalist, editor and novelist Jenny Valentish, listen as they explore lyrics that they find memorable, intriguing, moving or just plain incomprehensible.

Sunday 19 March

7@11: Comedy & Life After
Sue Ingleton and Dave O’Neil

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This conversation between comedic champions Sue Ingleton and Dave O’Neil explores the complexities of writing and performing works of humour. Sue and Dave discuss the myriad of other things comedians do to make a living, and to fulfil themselves creatively and emotionally. They share some of their own experiences and discuss the challenges of sustaining a career as a comedian in an ever-evolving industry.

Dave O’Neil is a high-profile comedian, actor, bass guitarist, writer, radio personality and would-be politician. Castlemaine local Sue Ingleton has long been a trail-blazer in Australian comedy, theatre, film and television.

Tuesday 21 March

7@11: Stories without words
Pablo Reboleiro, John-Paul Zaccarini and Team Henderson

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Words, both written and spoken, are not the only legitimate means of storytelling. How can audiences be engaged by physical motion rather than words to convey meaning? How can a wordless narrative convey meaning easily, and does it matter if audiences ‘get it’ or is okay for them just to come on the journey?
Join Pablo Reboleiro, a Spanish clown with a maths degree, and John-Paul Zaccarini, a circus dramaturge, choreographer and senior lecturer in circus, for an intriguing session facilitated by Team Henderson, performer and educator.

Wednesday 22 March

7@11: Too much information
Robyn Annear, Dr Lynne Kelly, Kelly Gardiner and Adele Walsh

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How do non-fiction writers make sense of all that information? How does good writing convey complex concepts to readers, and what can we learn from two leading knowledge-wranglers about how to filter, manage and communicate information? With historian and writer Robyn Annear, and Dr Lynne Kelly, writer, researcher and science educator, this session is co-presented by Unladylike, a podcast on women and writing. Your hosts are Kelly Gardiner, writer and writing teacher, and literature advocate, Adele Walsh.

Thursday 23 March

7@11: Storytelling home and away: nation, community and diaspora (the Filipino perspective)
Dr Trevor Hogan, Merlinda Bobis and Carlos Celdran

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What is the relationship between writing and performance and does this change according to audience and site? This session is a conversation exploring nationalism and cosmopolitanism, regionalism and diaspora communities, nostalgia and critique, home and homesickness, writing and performing, with a focus on anglophone and Filipino languages and literatures. Join facilitator Dr Trevor Hogan, Director of the Philippines-Australia Studies Centre at La Trobe University, Carlos Celdran, Filipino tour guide, cultural activist and performing artist, and Merlinda Bobis, Philippine/Australian writer, performer and academic.

Friday 24 March

7@11: Is TV on demand the new literary fiction?
Debi Enker, Fiona Wood and Tom Ryan

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Standards of fiction writing and choices of TV viewing have never been higher. With a range of excellent TV options at our fingertips, binge watching has become de rigueur with series addiction engendering the same fervour that used to be accorded a great book. This session will explore what novels and TV can and can’t do for us. Join TV critic and columnist Debi Enker and former screenwriter and award-winning Young Adult fiction author Fiona Wood (Wildlife, Cloudwish) in what promises to be one lively discussion. The discussion will be moderated by Tom Ryan, who has been a regular contributor to arts publishing for three decades, and whose new book Fred Schepisi: Interviews will be published in April by the University Press of Mississippi.

Saturday 25 March

7@11: The divided heart – motherhood and creativity
Rachel Power, Sally Rippin, Samantha Bews and Ellie Marney

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The writer Katherine Mansfield observed: mothers are forced to relinquish silence and solitude for ‘a mind full of the ghosts of saucepans’.
Do women still confront the attitude that a dedicated artist will avoid having children for the sake of her career? In this discussion, Rachel Power, author and editor of The Divided Heart: Art and Motherhood, writer and illustrator Sally Rippin, performer and storyteller Samantha Bews and young adult fiction author and teacher Ellie Marney, discuss how they navigate a life of art and family.