What do you mean, a ‘live magazine’?

Behind the scenes at Storyology After Dark, and why you’d be crazy to miss it

Here’s something new: Eleven journalists from across Australia and around the world, on stage telling their best true stories to a brilliant live audience … followed by a party!

I present you, Storyology After Dark. Think of it as a mashup of Pop-Up Magazine and The Moth, TedX and the 1920s Algonquin Hotel, all discovered hiding in a Tennessee Williams-inspired New Orleans jazz club — but profoundly, deeply Australian and with lots of laughs.

One of the perks of working at the Walkleys has always been the chance to gasbag with our country’s greatest storytellers. And having been regaled with tall tales and true over the years, when I saw Pop-Up Magazine in the US I was struck by how special a night of Australian journalists sharing their stories could be. These shows sell out huge San Francisco theatres in a day — and I know the hunger for cracking yarns is just as strong here. And what better way to remind Australians of the value of great journalism, than to strip away the paper and show them the heroes of our craft, in the flesh?

So we’ve assembled the Avengers of Aussie journalism to bring a magazine to life — live on stage. Like any mag, there’s a mix of formats, styles and voices — from features and columns to investigations and photo reportage.

Our bards will bring their stories to life with music and image for a night of romance, wisdom and laughter.

Expect tales of jungles, backyard shenanigans, investigations, nuns, drugs, legendary musicians, race relations, Afghanistan, children’s choirs, news presenters fainting on air, face tattoos. Plus: A brilliant audience, and a great party. After the show, you can mingle with our performers over a drink, and tell them your own fabulous tales.

After Darkers, assemble!

We bring you not one but two Gold Walkley winners. Caro Meldrum-Hanna is a star Four Corners investigative reporter who can’t rest until she gets to the bottom of a story.

Photojournalist Andrew Quilty will be sharing stories from street-level Afghanistan.

All the way from Silicon Valley comes Emmy-winning reporter Tonya Mosley with a searing insight into what it means to be black in America today.

Trent Dalton specialises in intimate features and profiles, and he has the Walkley Awards to prove it. He’s coming — with a fabulous plus one …

Many of our storytellers haven’t appeared on stage before, but William McInnes certainly has, along with film and television. Expect to be in stitches as he reminisces about his childhood backyard exploits.

Nakkiah Lui is no stranger to stage or screen either — you’ll know her from Black Comedy. A writer, director, actor, commentator and all around badass voice, we can’t wait to hear her story.

Dan Box, the follow-me voice behind your favourite true crime podcast, Bowraville, is back with another massive investigation into our justice system. He’ll have you on the edge of your seat.

Joining us from Auckland, Michelle Duff brings us the women behind the resurgence in those majestic Maori face tattoos.

Last week named our Freelancer of the Year, Jo Chandler specialises in boots on the ground reporting on science and the environment. For you, she’ll be telling a story from her time in Papua New Guinea, with angelic voices and less-than-angelic thoughts.

Tracey Spicer has made it her mission to strip back our assumptions and expectations about what women should be. She’ll be sharing a flashback from her rollercoaster career in news broadcasting from her memoir The Good Girl Stripped Bare.

You’ll recognise Sarah McVeigh’s voice from triple j’s Hack; she’ll share some deep, dark secrets about the things that keep people awake at night.

After Dark will be a night to remember — you’ll have stories you can tell for months, right up until next year’s show. So come one, come all: I can’t wait to show it to you and join you and our storytellers for drinks and yarn swapping at the bar afterwards.

Get your tickets here and have a look at the rest of our Storyology program in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne from August 24–31.

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