Episode 3: Songlines, Myth & Fairytales

It’s been a tumultuous time, hopefully proceeding long overdue change in the realms of social justice and respect, in particular to our First Nations people and women and LGBTQIA+ communities.

In this episode we look at how different kinds of sound and storytelling can transmit knowledge and emotions, and also how we can raise new voices, change narratives, and maybe even change the world. This episode is dedicated to all fighting for respect, peace and justice.

The wonderful book seed for this episode is the first in the series First Knowledges by Margo Neale & Lynne Kelly called Songlines: The Power and Promise. Published 2020 by Thames & Hudson Australia.

With thanks to Radio National and the ABC, we heard from Neale and Kelly, and courtesy of the National Museum of Australia, heard some audio from the amazing exhibition Songlines: Tracking the Seven Sisters that Neale curated along with a curatorium of elders. I highly recommend listening to the talks that took place at a symposium and explore various aspects of the exhibition if you want more!

It was my honour to interview Deb Clark Lowah aka deborahN, and feature the collaborative soundscape Place-We-Be she produced for Ballarat’s 2021 Survival Day Dawn Service with Dave Clark, Sarah Jane Hall, Bonnie Chew and Tony Lovett and with guidance and sharing of knowledge from Wadawurrung leaders Tammy Gilson and Bonnie Chew. In this way we could celebrate those things not found in books as part of exploring different storytelling and knowledge systems. We also got to chat about Motown (check out Deb singing in the Motor City Sounds) and music as a catalyst for change, as well as Deb’s experience in the classroom and her research into Indigenous leadership as a musician and teacher of Torres Strait Islander heritage.

It was also a pleasure to interview artist and writer Sarah Hart on the power of reimagined fairy tales from a feminist perspective and her creative PhD reworking Sleeping Beauty. In this episode we hear Sarah read one of her poems, and we will hear more from our chat in Part 2 of this episode Fairytales Continued. Our indie book feature is with Redrock Books & Gallery in Horsham, Victoria.

Listen and subscribe here or scroll down for photos and info about our Kids writing comp!


Write and illustrate a one page story based on a fairy tale but change up the ending towards a better, more equal world.

(2 age groups- age 5-10 and age 11-16)

Send to minervasbooksballarat@gmail.com or deliver to 115 Webb Avenue Ballarat East.

One entry from each age group will receive a Minerva’s Books voucher and all will have the chance to be recorded and feature in Episode 3 Part 2: Fairytales Continued!

Episode Photos

You can buy Amy’s collage below that accompanies this episode to support production of the show (click the pic), do a one-off or recurring donation, OR buy books through Minerva’s : )

Gather epiosode 3 collage 1.      Gather episode 3 collage 2

Huge thanks to all involved in this episode, produced on traditional Wadawurrung land.

Sound engineering: Dave Byrne, Iridium Audio

Minerva’s Idea by Ellen Sorensen

Podcast logo and episode design: Tiffany Titshall

Some other things and resources to check out:

Songlines: Tracking the Seven Sisters Symposium

Dr Martin Nakata and cultural interface

City of Ballarat Koorie Engagement Advisory Group

Ballarat Community Alliance

In my Blood it Runs

Common Ground

Deadly and Proud

Kostas Novakis, a Greek musician and ethnographer who in the 1990s collected recordings of traditional folk music in the local Macedonian Slavic dialects. Neret song

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