On January 10, 2000, Trent Dalton started the job that changed his life forever, working for $26,000 a year at Brisbane News magazine, writing everything and anything about the beautiful city that’s in his bones and in his blood.
A defining moment to be sure – especially for someone with Trent’s unquenchable curiosity and innate gift for storytelling – but one that pales next to another event that occurred that same day.
“The really special thing about January 10, 2000, is that was the day I met my wife, Fiona,” he said.
Two decades later and Trent continues to engage, enthral and entertain, both as a journalist and as an author with his debut novel Boy Swallows Universe.
Brisbane Festival has partnered with Queensland Theatre to breathe life into a stage adaptation of the story Trent describes as “straight from my heart and soul”, making its world premiere in the city where the story – and the author – began.
“I dream of sitting next to my mum – one of the inspirations for the story and, indeed, essentially one of the characters – inside that theatre during Brisbane Festival and pointing to the stage and whispering to her, ‘See, that’s why you’re my hero’,” Trent said.
Telling the city’s stories for two decades, Trent says he is constantly impressed by the way Brisbane audiences time and again turn out for the most ambitious, unconventional and off-the-wall artistic events, particularly during Brisbane Festival.
“It’s the time where artists and punters come together and delight in our shared little secret: Brisbane is the greatest city in the world,” Trent said.
“This is a city that knows the greatest thing we humans ever invented was storytelling.
“All we do in Brisbane is tell yarns and we tell them well and we tell them in ways that only we know how.
“We’re telling these stories every day in books and theatre productions and songs and dances and in every bar, club and taxi-cab in town.”