Footscray Pop Up School

Find out more about the amazing line up of performers, presenters and participants we have at our first Pop Up School.
An event created by the Public Pedagogies Institute.

Maddern Square, Footscray
Saturday, November 19th, 12pm – 4pm

Program Schedule


Welcome to Country & Smoking Ceremony
Carolyn Briggs is known as an Arweet (or Elder) of the Boon Wurrung people. Carolyn is the great granddaughter of Louisa Briggs, a Boon Wurrung woman, born near Melbourne in the 1830’s. Carolyn’s cultural knowledge and experience has been recognised by communities throughout Australia. Carolyn is passionately committed to sharing the values and heritage of Melbourne’s first peoples – the Boon Wurrung and believes that a sense of a shared history of Melbourne is important in uniting the whole community.
Carolyn Briggs gained entry into the 2012 and 2013 Who’s who Australia Women, and was inducted into the 2005 Victorian honour roll of women. Carolyn has also completed to bachelor degree in language and linguistics in the hope of recording her boon Wurrung language in oral and written form and is currently completing her doctorate in Philosophy researching in engaging urban indigenous youth to understand indigenous knowledge.


Event Speech Launch
An Australian Vietnamese woman born in Melbourne, Victoria from migrated parents in the late 1970’s after the Vietnam War.
Coming from a hardworking migrant family she was given the opportunity to meet her carer Shirley. It’s through her bonding with Shirley that Elisa could see a community of unified diversity. Shirley, role models and educators have brought in opportunities, experiences, respect, values and understanding the Australian culture. It is from these experiences that Elisa opened up a community business to cater for education services.
Elisa has a qualified background in printmaking, education and community work. She commits her time in community houses, projects and volunteer work. This year she graduated from Braybrook on Board leadership program and was an independent candidate for Stony Creek Ward.  It’s through her involvement and asking the community that she can make the western suburbs an enriching community.


As a species, human beings encounter countless unique experiences daily, but one experience that is undeniably universal is that of death and dying. Local poets Marilyn King, Steve Smart, and Gabriela Georges will perform their contemplations on death, and grief and loss, with pieces varying from the solemn to the funny.

Gabriela Georges
Gabriela Georges is a performer and community artist who recently released her debut spoken-word EP Rise & Fall (2016). She is currently working on creating more spaces and places where people can exchange stories relating to death, dying, grief and loss through her project Soul Arts.

Steve Smart
Steve Smart is a much better poet than he was 10 years ago, but not nearly as good as he will be in 10 years. Always learning.

Marilyn King
An award-winning, published writer, Marilyn runs workshops to help others find a love of words. While studying Drama in her teens, she realised she could share her passion for creating images and invoking emotions by being a Performance Poet and, fifty plus years later, she still revels in performing


Gabriela Georges
The Before I Die wall is an international art project inviting people to reflect on their lives and share personal aspirations in a public space. Just like the original creator of this project, artist Candy Cheung, it was Gabriela Georges’ personal experience of loss that motivated her to bring this project to Footscray for the first time. Through her project Soul Arts (, she is creating online and offline spaces where conversations around life and death can safely occur.


Event Host
Piper Huynh is a Melbourne-based multi-skilled theatre-maker who is driven by stories. Born and bred in Footscray, she attended Footscray North Primary School and Braybrook Secondary College. Her family migrated to Melbourne in the 80’s and 90’s for new opportunities and a better life. She has worked extensively with Western Edge Youth Arts as an emerging artist performing, writing and devising in works including their three-year project Chronicles and Beagle Chronicles, FATE, Scheherazade, Iago and Caliban. Piper is also a co-founder and support artist of the Echo Collective, an inclusive performance art group that regularly meet at the Bluestone Church Space to learn and train through theatre and performance. Though primarily a performer Piper has also worked as a facilitator, teaching artist, projection designer, producer, manager, photographer and videographer. Most recently, she facilitated Playback Theatre workshops about story-telling and performance in the Philippines and Sri Lanka to create community dialogue and attended the International Playback Theatre Camp in Serbia representing Australia. Piper continues to work independently in theatre as an educator, giving voice to young people and other artists through the theatre-making process and performances.


The New Age Band
As part of the Dual Identity Leadership Program, Andrew, Celia, Cammy and Anh are four young Second Generation Vietnamese Australians who formed their band after bonding through music. The song that they will be performing live is a song that they worked together to write – composed by their pianist, Andrew. The song is about being a part of two worlds; about the struggles they have with having two identities, cultures and heritage; and about are not being alone and to embrace who we are. The inspiration is from the sacrifices they have seen through their parents’ journey across the seas to a new country, which has given them the opportunities that they have today.

(Image above: The New Age Band (from left to right) Celia Tran, Cammy Luu, Anh Pham and Andrew Do.)


The Victorian Skateboard Association (VSA) is recognised by the Victorian State Government as the Peak Body for Skateboarding in Victoria. The VSA’s aim is to foster, encourage and promote skateboarding throughout Victoria. The VSA is comprised of passionate service providers such as Ownlife. Ownlife is a skateboarding education outfit founded and operated by Richard Flude and Rachel Delphin, and is responsible for delivering the All Aboard Skateboard Sessions. All Aboard Skateboard Sessions are a free, co-educational skateboard workshop program that’s primary focus is on creating new participants in skateboarding. The sessions’ emphasise gender equality and general inclusion with all equipment provided. In short, when we are on the scene anyone can try skateboarding. The VSA, Ownlife, and Maribyrnong City Council have partnered to deliver weekly All Aboard Skateboard Sessions that orbit between West Footscray Yarraville, and Highpoint Plaza skateparks. The Footscray Pop Up School will be an extension of that program.


Dance Performance & Workshop
L2R Next Gen (L2R) is a grassroots not-for-profit organisation that provides opportunities for young people to participate in free weekly hip hop dance workshops in Melbourne’s West including young people from culturally and linguistically diverse, newly arrived and at-risk communities. More than just a series of dance workshops, L2R promotes social inclusion, mental and physical health and self-respect by employing creative approaches to break down social barriers including age, race, religion, culture and gender while promoting resilience in the community. L2R connects young people to essential services in their community and builds pathways for young people to become emerging cultural leaders. L2R’s mission is to promote social cohesion, well-being and community through the delivery of free dance workshops to young people who would usually struggle to access classes due to social or socio-economic barriers (including poverty, disadvantage or experiences as recent migrants or refugees). L2R believes there is one language we can all speak… DANCE!


Emerging Hip Hop Artist
Ayour Paul, who goes by the MC name, A STAR FLO. Ayour is a young up and coming South Sudanese Australian rapper. His music brings positive vibes and high energy. His music talks about making a change in his life and working hard to reach goals. He will be performing two of his tracks which are on Soundcloud under the name (A STAR FLO), the first track is called Money, and his second track, Change.
Listen on Soundcloud


By Debbie Qadri
Debbie Qadri is an artist who works with community groups to make artworks. The circle book of childhood stories evolved from an idea she had about the possibility of sharing many childhood stories and to create a book that many people can work on at the same time. The book has only just begun, but she is hoping that when it has its thousand pages full of stories, that it will be able to create a greater understanding about the breadth of people’s experiences and lives.
The Circle Book Of Childhood Stories is a large circular book, three metres in diameter, which collects childhood stories. People are invited to contribute to the book by writing their own stories, by illustrating the book, or simply by reading it.
Learn more


Dr Tyson Kaawoppa Yunkaporta
We share and communicate information in a range of ways. Aboriginal people have communicated across language groups for thousands of years and have employed message sticks for correspondence, information and knowledge transfer. Message sticks hold information through symbols and images. In this way, the message stick carving area will give you an opportunity to engage with your knowledge and learning processes as they meet Aboriginal ways of knowing and doing. Dr Tyson Kaawoppa Yunkaporta will guide you as you work with Aboriginal modes of holding knowledge. Tyson, a Bama man, lives and works on Boonwurrung country, Melbourne, Australia.  You are invited to bring your stories of learning and teaching to contribute to the Footscray Pop Up School Message stick, capturing, mapping and recording this event where your contributions are most welcome!


Art Show by Footscray Primary School
Footscray Primary School holds an annual art show that celebrates learning through artistic processes. This year’s theme is Every face has a place. Each year level at Footscray primary explored and responded to storybooks, where children developed artistic skills techniques and abilities while telling strong vibrant narratives of their learning.  The storybooks act as an entry point into artistic knowing, and in this way, the power of books invites our imagination, creativity and design into how we view the world. Art becomes a powerful way to share experiences, understandings, beauty and learning. The Footscray Pop Up School celebrates learning that lives in our local lives, and invites our community to listen, learn and interact with the voices of children. Art is one way to communicate our experiences and in this exhibition the voices of children take centre stage. We invite you to interact and engage with the young people at Footscray Primary through their wonderful, vibrant art, as these children remind us that every face has a place!

Workshops by St John’s Primary School
Imagine a world where the questions were more important than the answers. Where we thought of how many ways to climb a tree, instead of thinking how do we get to the top. Now imagine a school where problem solving, initiative, critical thinking, ethical understandings, multiple solutions were an expectation above any score. Our vision at St. John’s is to continually work towards a space where discovering, creating and innovating for a sustainable and just world exists. We expect children to talk and show evidence of learning success and failures, goals and criteria. Our Prep to Year 2 area is known as Discovery. We plant ‘seeds’ to provoke children to think bigger and beyond the box. We bring the world in, which brings happiness, sadness, struggles and excitement to us. We are heavily influenced by the Early Years Framework, Walker Learning, Maria Montessori, Jerome Bruner, Reggio Emilia approach and MOST IMPORTANTLY by the children at St John’s.


Dual Identity Leadershop Program Alumni (DILP Alumni)
In an East meets West take on the piñata, Vietñata has been a vehicle for Vietnamese youth from the Dual Identity Leadership Program Alumni (DILP Alumni) to explore their experiences of identity, belonging, and diversity by revisiting what it’s like to be a child with a Vietnamese heritage growing up in Australia. Vietñata presents to the Footscray Pop Up School an opportunity to be immersed in this exploration through games and stories.
Learn more


Footscray Trugo Club is working to revive the historic sport of Trugo in Footscray. Since 2009 the original grounds have been unused, but we hope to change that by engaging the community and the council and getting the West’s very own sport back in Footscray.
Learn more


Hip Hop Performance and Rap Workshop


Paste Up by Liss Gabb