Skip to content

Opening Night: Above and Beyond – Thomas Mayo

To open the Wheeler Centre’s 2023 Spring Fling series, six Australian cultural icons took to the stage at Melbourne Town Hall for an intimate evening of storytelling, reflecting on the moments that shaped them and called upon them to go above and beyond in their careers, personal lives and creative endeavors.

Share this content

Hosted by Patricia Karvelas, the line-up of special guests included writer and disability activist Hannah Diviney, tennis champion Jelena Dokic, award-winning author Melissa Lucashenko, prominent campaigner for the Voice to Parliament Thomas Mayo, and Zimbabwean-Australian singer, actor and writer Rufaro Zimbudzi, followed by a very special musical performance by celebrated singer-songwriter Emma Donovan.

The following reflection on the theme Above and Beyond was shared on Opening Night by proud Kaurareg Aboriginal and Kalkalgal, Erubamle Torres Strait Islander man, Thomas Mayo. Thomas is the National Indigenous Officer of the MUA. He is a signatory of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and has been a leading advocate since its inception in May 2017. He is the Chairperson of the Northern Territory Indigenous Labor Network, advises the Diversity Council of Australia and the From the Heart campaign, and is an executive member of the Northern Territory Trades and Labour Council. Thomas has previously written five books published by Hardie Grant, and has articles and essays published in The Guardian, Griffith Review and Sydney Morning Herald.



This event was recorded on Wednesday 4 October 2023 at Melbourne Town Hall.

Featured music is Different Days by Chill Cole.


Spring Fling is proudly supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria, and is supported through the Melbourne City Revitalisation Fund.

Special thanks to official bookseller Readings and accommodation partner The Sofitel.

Stay up to date with our upcoming events and special announcements by subscribing to The Wheeler Centre's mailing list.

Privacy Policy

The Wheeler Centre acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners of the land on which the Centre stands. We acknowledge and pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and their Elders, past and present, as the custodians of the world’s oldest continuous living culture.