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Barrie Kosky’s “opera freak” grandmother, Magda, was “outraged”, the round-spectacled son of a Richmond furrier recalls of one of their outings together, when he was aged 12 or 13. Magda had once again taken her aspiring thespian grandson to Melbourne’s Princess Theatre, this time to see Mozart’s The Magic Flute, but the dialogue in this production coloured them both unimpressed.

“Give me a glass of red, Ned,” said one of the characters – possibly Papageno, a half-bird, half-man creature questing for love – in the second act.

In late 2015, on a whim, Adelaide-born budding filmmaker Victoria Lewis went to Kenya, intrigued by the culture. She had completed a film course, had a longstanding interest in documentary, and had already made a short film whose subjects included a woman born in the East African nation.

Lewis soon discovered “a new generation of Africans” making “incredible” contemporary art. “The common thread was how art and creativity were giving hope and direction to the young people we met,” says Lewis, who continued the journey to Tanzania alongside Kenyan cinematographer Kevin Bulimu. “Art was changing their lives.”

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