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Teen Gala: Art and Language


At this gala event, an all-teen lineup will explore and experiment at the intersection of words and pictures. We’re bringing together Victoria’s best young storytellers and spoken word performers to lead us into a world of pure imagination.

Prepare for a night of sensory delights, as each performance is accompanied by a digital artwork splashed on the Wheeler Centre big screen. Reignite the embers of creativity and witness the combination of art and language bringing stories to life.

Presented by the Wheeler Centre and the National Gallery of Victoria

Unfortunately Fig Russon is no longer able to appear at this event.


Red Brazil

I am a 13 year old boy from the Macedon Ranges. I play soccer and guitar and love the Beach Boys. I can’t say I like poetry because I have read all the books and the poets, because I haven’t read any. But what I like is how it can appeal to anyone regardless of experience. I like to have fun w... Read more

Zuva Goverwa

My name is Zuva and I’m currently in year 12 completing VCE. I had the honour of competing in, and ultimately winning, the State Final of the Plain English Speaking Award earlier this year, with a speech that highlights my passion for youth activism and the collective power of our generation. ... Read more

Finnan Hanney

Finnan is a sixteen-year-old born and raised in Melbourne. He is a VCE student, in to music, reading and sport. He was previously shortlisted for the Boroondara Literary Awards, and has a budding interest in fiction writing.

Mason Johns

Mason Johns is a year 11 student. He lives in Melbourne with his parents, a tabby cat, and a fluffy dog. When he’s not at school, you might find him training with his athletics club, running with his dog, reading, reading about running or seeing his friends.

Charlie Mackenzie

Charlie is a 14 year old artist based in Melbourne. She mainly works in musical theatre but also writes her own original music. Her intent with her music is to ‘capture the feelings you can’t put into words because you don’t quite know why they are there’. Over the years she has trained with... Read more

Lee Pennefather

Lee is a 14-year-old from Melbourne. They have been writing and creating from a young age and have a love of literature and the performing arts. They are very excited to be part of Wheeler Centre events and look forward to exploring more ways to express themself and their ideas.

Eric Vien

Eric Vien is a Year 10 student in Melbourne and has an interest in expressing his thoughts through creative writing. He is the 2021 OutLoud Poetry Slam Champion in the Year 9 to 12 Category with his poem titled ‘I love you’. Alongside this, he enjoys listening to music, shopping with his... Read more

Avery Yu

Avery (they/them) is a year 9 student in Melbourne. They have a strong interest in writing and performance, and previously performed in the finals of the 2021 OutLoud Poetry Slam.

Sharon Zhang

Sharon Zhang is a poet from Jiangsu, China, who writes confessional poetry about politics, identity, and art. A Melbourne native, their biggest inspirations are Gilles Deleuze, Max Stirner, and singer-songwriter John Darnielle. Outside of writing, they enjoy reading political theory, playing guitar,... Read more


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The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which we live and work. We pay our respects to the people of the Kulin Nation and all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present.