I was lucky enough to be an In-Fusion Festival Photography Competition finalist this year. After four years of being at UTS and admiring the submissions year after year, I was definitely stoked to be chosen. Photos had to be submitted to interpret “Food is our common ground, a universal experience” a quote by James Beard. Last night was the cocktail event where the Judges’ Award and People’s Choice Award would be given out, it also marked the closing of the In-Fusion Festival for 2014.
There were some performances that night including a really great singer and her acoustic guitar, unfortunately I was too busy getting my food on to take photos. The most anticipated entertainment of the night however was a stand up by Steady Eddy. He had apparently performed last year and by popular demand was asked to return again this year.
Steady Eddy is the stage name of Christopher Widdows, a stand-up comedian with cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is the umbrella term for a bunch of permanent disorders that affect a person’s movement. People who suffer from this may also have visual, learning and other intellectual impairments. This is all that a 15-minute Google search has told me so I’m clearly not an expert. But I feel like anyone encumbered by such a consuming illness deserves the absolute highest of praises, especially when I know I couldn’t do stand up even half as good.
I found this video of him from 1995 performing at the Australian Comedians in Concert. He’s in an audience of thousands here so I felt a bit sad about how small our event was, and how he’s definitely gotten a lot less coherent in comparison to twenty years ago. But university is a place of learning and I definitely learnt a lot just by having the opportunity to see him perform. Um, I didn’t actually mean for this to take up so much of this post, but I was heavily inspired and curious after his performance.
I was in conversation with Lucy that night, one of the organisers of the festival who sadly informed me that this is the last year they would be running In-Fusion Festival due to the budget cuts. A twelve year tradition ended that night.
Lastly, I managed to walk away with the People’s Choice Award! Here’s me with Tranquilo, credits to Robert for taking the photo. Thank you to everyone who put up with my harassing them to vote for me on Facebook and also thanks to Robert and Flic for being my +2s to the event. It was never about the prize but about the awareness I wanted to share regarding exchange. If there’s even the slightest doubt in your mind about studying abroad, perish at the thought good sir and get on your application right now.
The next best thing about the competition is getting to keep my blown up photo. Thanks again In-Fusion Festival, I hope you guys are reborn next year in some shape or form.