To mark 25 years of the classic Australian ‘coming of age’ novel, Looking for Alibrandi, our all-star panel lovingly recreates the central plot point when Josie Alibrandi makes a speech at Have a Say Day in Martin Place and meets Jacob Coote for the first time. Host Pia Miranda joins Looking for Alibrandi author Melina Marchetta, Yassmin Abdel-Magied, Mark Di Stefano, Gen Fricker, Brodie Lancaster and Rajith Savanadasa as they unleash their inner Josies and have their say.

Yassmin Abdel-Magied (International)

Yassmin Abdel-Magied

Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a Sudanese-Australian writer, broadcaster and award-winning social advocate with a background in mechanical engineering. One of the 2020 LinkedIn Changemakers, Yassmin is a globally sought-after advisor on issues of social justice, focused on race, gender and faith. She has travelled to 24 countries delivering keynotes on inclusive leadership, tackling unconscious bias and achieving substantive change. Yassmin's internationally acclaimed TED talk, 'What does my headscarf mean to you', has been viewed over two million times and was chosen as one of TED's top ten ideas of 2015. Her social and current affairs commentary has appeared in TIME, The Guardian and Teen Vogue as well as a regular on the BBC, Aljazeera, TRT and Monocle 24. Yassmin has published a memoir and two fiction novels and has a number of screenwriting projects in development. Her latest book is Talking About a Revolution.

Melina Marchetta (Australian)

Melina Marchetta

Melina Marchetta is the writer of ten novels which includes the multi-award winning Looking For Alibrandi, Saving Francesca, and the 2009 Michael L Printz Award winner On the Jellicoe Road. In 2011, her novel The Piper’s Son was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award and shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Award. She has also written a fantasy trilogy, The Lumatere Chronicles, as well as crime novel, Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil, which was released in 2016 to critical acclaim. Her latest work is The Place on Dalhousie and the children's series What Zola Did on Monday. In 2020, the film adaptation of Looking For Alibrandi celebrated its 20th anniversary. It won the Australian Film Institute Award, an Independent Film Award for best screenplay, as well as the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Award and the Film Critics Circle of Australia Award. Melina has also written for the award-winning TV series, Dance Academy. Melina's work has been translated into 18 languages and published in 20 countries.