Outback Musical: Slow journalism that shows us ourselves

Presented by: Dr Caroline Graham

Date: Friday 19 May 2023
Time: 12-1pm
Location: Online via Zoom and in-person at the SCA Writer's Studio (Level 6, Michie Building)


Abstract

As the town of Longreach emerges, tentatively, from the longest drought in living history, students from the School of Distance Education are preparing for one of the world's most unusual musicals. 87 students, spread over an area twice the size of Victoria, have spent a year rehearsing Robin and the Sherwood Hoodies online, from their sheep, cattle and goat stations. The remote cast won't get a chance to come together until a few days before the premiere. Then, for one night, the kids—who dream of being dancers, bull-riders, prop-makers and lawn bowlers—will gather to show a sold-out audience what they can do. 

This presentation looks behind the scenes of Outback Musical, a documentary created in collaboration with ABC. The narrative, which explores notions of drought, isolation, community, creativity and resilience, is part of a broader portfolio of human-centred, public-interest storytelling that reflects communities back to themselves—and to each other. Using this collaboration as a case study in slow journalism, this session asks how journalists outside the industry (including those within in the academy) can contribute to a richer, slower, more robust and better-resourced post-industrial media landscape. It also frames this practice-led documentary research within evolving notions of journalistic subjectivity, as well as using both the project and its learnings to push up against notions of metrocentrism in the media landscape. 


Presenter

Caroline Graham is a digital journalism lecturer, specialising in narrative non-fiction storytelling across both traditional and new media formats, including podcasting, data-driven reporting and longform creative non-fiction. As part of her practice-based research, Caroline is the co-author of the Australian bestseller Larrimah (Allen & Unwin, 2021) and the co-author/co-producer of investigative true crime podcast series Lost in Larrimah (The Australian, 2018), which won a Walkley Award. Her academic research interests include the application of journalistic ethics and traditions to emerging media formats, including data-driven reporting methodologies, the ethics of true crime podcasting, the evolution of narrative journalism formats, notions of subjectivity in a new-media landscape, regional and rural reporting and the emerging solutions journalism movement.


 

About Research Seminar and Workshop Series

 


School of Communication and Arts Research Seminar Series

The research seminar and workshop series occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

Friday, 23 Febraury
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

The Szondi Test: Mimetic Desire and the Media of PsychiatryDr Grant Bollmer

Friday, 23 Febraury
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Adaptation, Narrative and Rites of PassageAdjunct Professor Michael Eaton

Friday, 12 April
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

A Wrench in the Works of the Dream Factory: Special/Visual Effects in the Hollywood Studio Era, 1915-1965Prof. Julie Turnock

Tuesday, 23 April
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

An artistic path between art and science: Vulcano, Fata Morgana, and Min Min Light

Maria Leonardo Cabrita

Monday, 24 June
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Mapping Climate Change through a macrocosm – a UNESCO-Tagged World Heritage Site in IndiaA/Prof Deepti Ganapathy