Jon Doust’s Boy on a Wire was launched (all over again) on the evening of Thursday April 2 in the Vancouver Arts Centre in Albany. It was as an energised and entertaining evening as the first launch at Christ Church Grammar School on March 19. Xave Brown and Simone Keane both sang Leonard Cohen’s ‘Bird on a Wire’ – a song that captures in its wistful vulnerability something of the spirit of Jon’s book. Then again, the performances of Geoff Walldeck (in mortar board, gown and with cowbell), Wayne Harrington (Editor of the Albany Weekend and former Aquinas College boarder) and Robin Thomas (lecturer at Denmark TAFE, musician and contemporary CCGS board with Jon) were delivered with in the spirit of the highly inappropriate irreverence of the book. Nic Spnbroek emceed and Hugh Manning was cuffed over the head with the book to mark its launching.
Georgia Richter (pictured) of Fremantle Press spoke with pride of this, the first title she has taken from editing to publication. ‘This is a very special book for me,’ she said, ‘and one which deserves to take its place in the pantheon of coming-of-age school stories. It undid me during the editorial process and I know it will undo you too.’
Special thanks must go to the following, without whom this launch would have been impossible:
· all the people who filled the venue to bursting
· Cosi’s Café
· Oranje Tractor
· The Singing Tree
· the Vancouver Arts Centre
· City of Albany
· Sprung Writers’ Festival
· Country Arts WA
The photograph is courtesy of Steve Pontin.