September 16–29, 2020
After the success of its sold-out tour in 2018, ABR will head back to Germany in 2020 for its next tour in association with Academy Travel. This time we’ll venture to western Germany, followed by four days in Amsterdam.
Highlights include some of Europe’s greatest art collections. In Germany, we visit the Städel Museum in Frankfurt and the Hamburg Kunsthalle as well as collections in Cologne, Bonn, and Düsseldorf. In the Netherlands, the tour includes the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, and the Mauritshuis in The Hague. Along the way there will be opera and music – and the usual ABR conviviality.
Christopher Menz, former art gallery director and curator and a seasoned leader of European tours, will guide this fourteen-day tour (16–29 September 2020).
Enquiries and bookings: For more information about the 2020 ABR Germany and the Netherlands Tour please visit Academy Travel.
Download the brochure by clicking here:
ABR’s third international cultural tour, in partnership with Academy Travel, took us to Germany. Once again the tour was led by Peter Rose, ABR Editor and CEO, and Christopher Menz, ABR Development Consultant and former gallery director. The two week tour commenced in Munich at the beginning of June and then headed north, visiting Bayreuth, Weimar, Dresden, and Berlin where it concluded. It was a great success with a marvellous itinerary that included walking tours and visits to art galleries, museums, and libraries, as well as taking in opera and musical performances, capped off by major literary event at the Australian Embassy in Berlin. The highlights were many but included visits to the Glyptothek, Alte, and Neue Pinakotheks in Munich; Goethe’s House and the Duchess Anna Amalia Library in Weimar; and the magnificent collections and buildings of Dresden (including the rebuilt Frauenkirche) and Berlin. Among some great opera performances, we were fortunate hear Simone Young twice, first conducting Janáček’s From the House of the Dead in Munich and then a superlative Tosca, staring Elena Stikhina, in Berlin. Other musical highlights in Berlin were Offenbach’s Bluebeard at the Komische Opera and a concert by the Berlin Philharmonic in Simon Rattle’s final season, which included the world première of Notturno inquieto by Brett Dean. During the final week, the Australian Embassy in Berlin hosted a special literary event ‘Australians in Germany – A Cultural Exchange’ at which writer Anna Funder and artist Brook Andrew were in conversation with Peter Rose. Around one hundred guests enjoyed the stimulating exchange and the Embassy’s hospitality.
ABR's second international tour, in partnership with Academy Travel, was a twelve-day Shakespeare-themed visit to England. We visited Stratford-upon-Avon, the Glyndebourne Opera Festival, and London. Highlights included performances of Antony and Cleopatra and Salome by the RSC in Stratford, Brett Dean's new opera Hamlet in its premiere season at Glyndebourne, and Romeo and Juliet at Shakespeare's Globe in London. The tour included a fascinating walking tour of Stratford, as well as visits to Charleston, house of Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant, and to Middle Temple Hall, where Twelfth Night was performed in 1602. In London we also visited the National Portrait Gallery, The Wallace Collection, the Courtauld Institute and the British Library. The tour was led by Peter Rose and Christopher Menz.
‘My recent experience travelling on the east coast of the United States with the inaugural ABR tour group was a truly exceptional one. The knowledge and expertise of the tour leaders meant our itinerary took us to places, and even introduced us to people, not usually accessible to ordinary travellers. In all, it was truly memorable!’
‘ABR’s small group tour to the United States in 2016 focused on literature, history, art and theatre. The program was well-thought-out, varied and balanced. The tour leaders were attuned to particular interests of individual group members and helped them where necessary to further explore those interests in the different venues we visited. One of the excellent features was the number of private viewings and guided tours specially tailored for our group.’
Australian Book Review’s sixteen-day US tour – led by Peter Rose and Christopher Menz – took us from Washington, DC to New York City. It was the first of its kind undertaken by the magazine. Our aim was to take ABR on the road with a party of keen readers and supporters. The tour began at the Australian Embassy in Washington, where the Editor was in conversation with Geraldine Brooks (newly gonged at the Ambassador’s residence an hour earlier) and Anna Funder, before a capacity audience.
Along the way we visited writers’ homes (Emily Dickinson, Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott, and Edith Wharton’s opulent The Mount), great libraries (Morgan, Beinecke, Library of Congress, the New York Public Library), and several new or reopened art museums, including the Met Breuer and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, and the magnificent Art Museums in Cambridge, as well as several museums that weren’t known to everyone in the group (Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Phillips Collection, Wadsworth Atheneum, Philip Johnson’s Glass House, Yale Center for British Art, and the Clark in Williamstown, with Tadao Ando’s superb new extension).
There was also much theatre and opera, all in a spirit of enquiring conviviality. We met writers, librarians, publishers, journalists, curators, and diplomats. Two highlights on our penultimate day in New York were visits to the offices of the New York Review of Books (where Peter Rose and Robert Silvers exchanged copies of their magazines) and Farrar, Straus and Giroux, whose president and publisher, Jonathan Galassi, spoke about his new books and his keen interest in Australian writers.
Please note this event is now booked out.
Renowned biographer Professor Jeffrey Meyers delivered the eighth annual Seymour Biography Lecture – on the craft of biography, autobiography, and memoir. In his work on Joseph Conrad, Wyndham Lewis, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and Robert Frost, Meyers was fascinated to learn that each of these married writers had an intriguing, but elusive, lover. He found that these mysterious lovers assume an independent existence and had extraordinary lives worthy of a full-length study. In this lecture, Meyers reveals what happens when minor characters take on lives of their own.
Jeffrey Meyers – one of twelve Americans who are Fellows of the Royal Society of Literature – is one of the most respected scholars in his field. He has published fifty books and 800 articles on modern American, English, and European literature, has edited two collections of essays on biography and has lectured at numerous universities across the world. His interests include bibliography, editing, literary criticism, art history, and film. Based in Berkeley, California, Meyers is the author of several works on T. E. Lawrence and George Orwell and has written about the lives of Katherine Mansfield, Robert Lowell, D.H. Lawrence, Edgar Allan Poe, Edmund Wilson, Humphrey Bogart, Errol and Sean Flynn, Somerset Maugham, Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe, Samuel Johnson, and John Huston.
Jeffrey Meyers delivered the lecture at Australian Book Review on 17 September 2012.
Seymour Biography Lecture 2012, recorded at the National Library of Australia on 13 September 2012.
Supported by John and Heather Seymour, Australian Book Review, the State Library of New South Wales, and the National Library of Australia.
The Seymour Biography Lecture was also presented in Canberra and Sydney at the National Library of Australia and the State Library of New South Wales respectively.
Join ABR and the shortlisted Peter Porter Poetry Prize poets for an online ceremony on at 5pm on 27 January 2021. More details to follow.