House debates

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Statements by Members

Lysicrates Foundation, Multicultural and Indigenous Media Awards

4:14 pm

Photo of Mr Tony BurkeMr Tony Burke (Watson, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Minister for Finance) Share this | | Hansard source

The Lysicrates Foundation was created to support and inspire original Australian theatre. The Lysicrates monument in the Sydney botanic gardens has recently been refurbished. It is next to the lotus pond and pays homage to the tradition of performance going back to ancient Greece. The foundation was started by Patricia and John Azarias. Together, they have endowed the foundation with their passion for performance and visual arts. The foundation hosts the Lysicrates Prize for original Australian plays, and the winning play will be staged next year. I would like to congratulate the finalists for this year: Melissa Bubnic, Jennifer Compton and Nick Coyle.

Organisations and prizes such as these are fantastic way to celebrate Australian culture and encourage original Australian writing. We have a proud heritage for creative works, and I am glad to be celebrating contemporary artists who continue to inspire with their words and performances. Patricia and John Azarias were inspired to start the foundation when they walked past the Lysicrates monument in the botanic gardens. Built in 1868, the monument was originally on private property and was rescued from destruction by Sir William McKell in 1943, when it was placed in its current location. It was in need of repair and ,with the help of government support, it has been restored to its former glory. Congratulations to John and Patricia and the whole foundation. I look forward to seeing the plays that are produced in the future.

The fifth annual Multicultural and Indigenous Media Awards dinner was held last Friday night in Sydney. The event was hosted by its founder, the Hon. Shaoquett Moselmane MLC. The awards are a wonderful opportunity to highlight the work that is being done by multicultural and Indigenous communities. Australians have made many different journeys to be here today. We are a nation of many languages and stories. People who have the gift of speaking other languages will know there is no such thing as perfect translation. There are words and ideas that do not translate into English exactly, but these writers, reporters and editors who are being celebrated have transcended the limitations of language and are allowing their stories to thrive. They keep a strong grounding of their culture and have worked hard and played an important role by sharing those stories and putting important issues on the mainstream agenda.

I would like to congratulate the winners: Ms Namita Gohil from India Link Media as young journalist of the year; Mr Nerses Baliozian from Armenia Media as photographer of the year; Ana Sevo from Iraqi TV for online news coverage, Laura Murphy-Oates from SBS National Indigenous TV, Usha Arvind from India Link Media for journalist of the year in print, Susannah Lolohea from Koori Radio, Mike Sweet, freelancer, for editorial reporting and Raymond Selvaraj from SBS Radio for coverage of community affairs.