'Yellowface' Author Rebecca F Kuang and Roman Empire Scholar Mary Beard Are All About Women's First 2024 Headliners

The Sydney Opera House festival will return for a packed day of talks about gender, justice and equality in March.
Sarah Ward
December 05, 2023

So, you read one of 2023's huge literary sensations. And, you engaged with one of TikTok's biggest memes. What comes next? Diving into them both at All About Women. Notching up 12 years when its 2024 edition takes place, this Sydney Opera House event enlists impressive talents to dig into gender, justice and equality, including by exploring the hits, trends and issues of the 12 months prior. Accordingly, naming Yellowface author Rebecca F Kuang and Roman Empire scholar Mary Beard for next year's one-day festival couldn't make more sense.

Kuang will be heading to Sydney to chat about her satirical novel, which dives into cancel culture, cultural appropriation and diversity in the world of publishing, and has been a must-read since arriving on shelves in May.

As for Beard, she's coming to the Harbour City fresh off the release of her latest book The Emperor of Rome, and will explore misogyny, power, murder and gossip in the ancient world — and its relevance to now. So, how often will All About Women think about the Roman Empire? At Beard's session, plenty.

John Packman

So far, Kuang and Beard are the first headliners on the 2024 event's program, with both getting talking in Australia for the first time. But they'll have company when the full lineup drops in January. All About Women brings together international and Australian artists, thinkers and storytellers to examine a broad variety of topics relevant to its main focus — so, to gender, justice and equality — via panels, conversations, workshops and performances.

After expanding to two days in 2022 and then to three in 2023, Sydney Opera House's key feminist festival is running as a one-day event again in 2024. The date to mark in your diary: Sunday, March 10. Won't be in Sydney that day, because you'll be away or you live elsewhere? All About Women will also take place online again.

"It will be such an honour to host both Rebecca F Kuang and Mary Beard on their first speaking tours in Australia. We look forward to announcing our fierce and fearless co-curators and the full lineup in the new year, and can't wait to welcome audiences back to the festival for its 12th year in March," said Sydney Opera House Head of Talks and Ideas Chip Rolley.

2024 marks the third year that the fest is enlisting a team of co-curators to put the program together. 2023's cohort gave audiences everyone from riot grrrl pioneers Bikini Kill to child actor-turned-I'm Glad My Mom Died author Jennette McCurdy.

Jacquie Manning

Prudence Upton

Jacquie Manning

All About Women 2024 will take place on Sunday, March 10 at the Sydney Opera House, and also stream online. The full program will release on Tuesday, January 16, 2023 — check back here then for further details. Tickets for the just-announced first sessions go on sale at 9am on Thursday, December 7, with pre sales from 9am on Tuesday, December 5.

Top image: Jacquie Manning.

Published on December 05, 2023 by Sarah Ward
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