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National Museum embarks on Olympic Odyssey

29 JUNE 2004

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A host of Australian Olympians, sports journalists and two Greek boys who grew up in Sydney are visiting the National Museum of Australia next month as a winter warmup for the Athens Olympic Games.

The Olympic Odyssey series includes Canberra's oldest Olympian, long jumper Judy Wilson; sports historian Dr Michael McKernan; and the Perry brothers - fashion designer Alex and voiceover man Lee.

Olympic Odyssey starts this Friday, when 10 of Canberra's 130 Olympians share their personal Olympic experience in games stretching from London in 1948 to Sydney in 2000.

The lineup includes Australia's first Aboriginal gold medal winner Nova Peris and her sprinting partner, Daniel Batman, swimmer David Dickson, basketballer Andy Campbell and rower Megan Still. They will share their stories with 666 ABC Canberra sports journalist Tim Gavel.

Organised by the Friends of the National Museum and 666 ABC Canberra, the first of the four-part Olympic Odyssey series, The Athletes, is being held in the Friends Lounge from 7.30-9pm this Friday, 2 July. Media are welcome.

'The National Museum is committed to telling the personal stories of all Australians - and in the lead up to the next Olympics - we're hearing from the athletes who have won, lost and even fallen in love at the Games,' said Friends of the National Museum executive officer Tom Layton.

The other Olympic Odyssey events are:

  • The Greek Olympiad (14 July) Classicist and historian Dr Douglas Kelly compares the modern Olympics with its beginnings in the fiercely competitive ancient Games.
  • Australia at the Olympics (23 July) Media commentators Tim Gavel and Phil Lynch, joined by Dr Michael McKernan and the legendary Norman May, share the top Olympic stories from Athens 1896 to Athens 2004, including the feats of boxer Snowy Baker, swimmers Frank and Lily Beaurepaire and Andrew 'Boy' Charlton.
  • Growing up Greek in Australia (30 July) Fashion designer Alex Perry and his brother top voice artist Lee take a funny look at their immigrant Greek childhood in Sydney with 666's Louise Maher.

Olympic Odyssey series tickets for all four events are $35, Friends $25. Single tickets are $10, $8 Friends. Bookings on 02 6208 5048.

For recordings, interviews and images please contact Public Affairs Director Martin Portus on 02 6208 5351, 0409 916 481 or m.portus@nma.gov.au