Dear friends of Twilight School,

It’s been a year of growing tentacles (lovely ones) in all communal directions from our perspective. And flinging our doors open so any person of good will could enter and perhaps find a little comfort or learning or enrichment. And solace, too.

Helen Garner at Twilight School Evening.

We started with HELEN GARNER and one of the biggest audiences that had ever graced that mansion drawing room. It brought many folk who had not known about us.

And the stimulating guests kept coming: Sister Brigid Arthur, Fr. Bob, Rev Tim Costello, Hugh Mackay, Martin Flanagan and Richard Frankland, and more.

We aired our first conversation/performance in the new courtyard on a warm November night. The acoustics were beautifully enriched by the three mansion walls.

It felt like we had created a new way of communing in a very simple way. Sky and song and resonant voices were an intoxicating experience.

We roamed into the realm of breakfasts with both a MOTHER’S DAY and FATHER’S DAY breakfast. Hot sizzling breakfast and mini speeches have found their way into the very echoes of this building.

Our schoolette was part community engagement, part thoughtful conversations and a generous mixture of ‘learning for the sake of learning’ courses in mansion drawing rooms, in gardening plots down at The Patch, in stables and barns, along paths under the rail bridges, in kitchens, and along creeks and dams.

We carved an easy and energising partnership with Sunbury Community Health through Bernie Hetherington, Mary Rush, Helen Edwards and many more.

Our Good Man Project, inspired by Salesian teacher Dan Walsh, attracted wonderful and expanding audiences to open and free seminars on The Teenage Brain as well as collaborations with John Byrne Foundation.

The Twilight School has meandered its way into the outside world.

I can hear whistling down the road as it goes. It’s following the choir and the Salsa dancing.

Thank you warmly for being part of it.

(For more reading, check out the Barn Owl Journal. It just takes an exuberant click.)

And lastly, feel free to tell us what your favourite moment was – or anything else you care to express. We genuinely would love to hear from you!


Bruno Lettieri

Photo credits: Amanda Piper