2004 INAUGURAL GALA DINNER
His Excellency Michael L’Estrange, High Commissioner for Australia, welcomed guests to the inaugural Australia Day Gala Dinner and thanked Foundation Sponsors for their support. The 300 guests enjoyed an evening of outstanding Australian food, wine and entertainment in the splendour of Australia House.
For his distinguished career in the United Kingdom and for his support for the families and victims of Bali Bombing in 2002, the Australia Day Foundation selected Clive James AM as 2004 Australian of the Year in the UK.
Clive James is an Australian who has made his mark in the United Kingdom as a journalist, poet, novelist, lyricist, writer, reviewer and TV presenter.
He was born in Sydney and educated at the University of Sydney andCambridge University. He was President of the famous Cambridge Footlights Dramatic Club.
He has lived in the United Kingdom since 1962, and, from 1972 to 1982 he initially came to prominence as the discerning, witty television critic for The Observer.
As a writer, his most famous works form a three-part autobiography (Unreliable Memoirs, Falling Towards England and May Week was in June).
Clive James is a household name throughout the UK principally because of his television programmes and series, which include – the late Clive James, Saturday Night Clive, the “Postcard From” series and Clive James Talking.
Clive James says that he is very serious about his work in criticism and all fields, but poetry is the centre of everything and last year he published ‘The Book of my Enemy’, collected verse from 1958 – 2003.
Following the Bali Bomb tragedy in 2002, Clive James has written a number of articles about this outrage.
He went further though, and participated in the moving Service at St Paul’s Cathedral for the Bali bomb victims and their families, and then organised a fund-raising event in Australia House for the victims.
Hazel Murphy has the characteristics that Australians admire – foresight, determination, application, and persistence – and over 17 years she made an outstanding contribution to Australia’s wine industry in the UK.
For these reasons the Australia Day Foundation selected Hazel Murphy, AM as the recipient of the inaugural 2005 Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK award.
Hazel Murphy was born in Manchester and in the early 1980’s she joined the Australian Trade Commission in London where she focused on developing the UKmarket for Australian wines.
In 1986 Hazel was appointed to establish the Australian Wine Bureau in London. In this role, over a seventeen-year period, she was responsible for the generic marketing of our wines in Europe.
It was a period of spectacular growth – when Hazel started the Bureau, Australia’s wine exports to the UK were less than 1 million litres. When she left the position last year, Australia’s wine exports to the UK was more than 160 million litres, and Australia was rivaling France as the leading supplier of wines to the UK.
In 1996 Australia recognized Hazel’s contribution to our wine industry by awarding her an AM – Member of the Order of Australia. In the same year, the wine industry presented Hazel with the prestigious Maurice O’Shea award.
Australian chef Scott Webster created a stunning four course menu showcasing the very best of Australian produce. The menu included eucalyptus wild fire Australian beef fillet. The beef was courtesy of Meat & Livestock Australia.
Scott trained in Sydney but his work experience has been international. His career has taken him from Sydney to London, Switzerland, Los Angeles and now back to London. Scott retains a passion for Australian and Asian ingredients and at Osia, his new restaurant and bar in the West End of London; he brings a new sense of Australian flavours to the UK. Fresh food, simply prepared, is Scott Webster’s hallmark.
In 2003, Osia was short listed for the Hotel & Restaurant Restaurateurs’ Restaurant of the Year 2003 New Restaurant of the Year award. Osia is short listed for three awards in the 2004 Carlton TV Restaurant Critic’s Awards – Best New Restaurant, Best Front of House Team, and Best London Restaurant.
The entertainment was supplied by cabaret singer, Kaye Tuckerman. Kaye won the prestigious ‘New York Award’ at the 2003 Sydney Cabaret Convention, and agreed to perform her award-winning cabaret at Australia House. Uli Geissendoefer accompanied Kaye on piano.
Kaye made her professional debut at The Sydney Opera House, and as singer, actress and dancer, has performed in musicals including ‘Les Miserables’, ‘The Boy from Oz’, ‘Buddy’, ‘South Pacific’ and ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’. Her screen credits include ‘The Matrix – Reloaded’ and the ‘The Matrix – Revolution’.
Baritone Grant Doyle and mezzo-soprano Catriona Barr received rapturous applause from an appreciative audience for their superb rendition of ‘Come What May’ from the film Moulin Rouge. Nicole Panizza accompanied them on piano.
National Australia Group
Rio Tinto Plc
Australian Tourist Commission
South Australia Tourist Commission