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Updated: Apr 8

A presentation by Susannah Fullerton

A few years ago, acclaimed actor, Colin Firth revealed he was meant to go naked for the famous lake scene in the TV series of Jane Austen’s most iconic novel, Pride and Prejudice.

On a TV chat show Colin told the audience ”People talked about the scene where I proposed to the girl and all the rest of it. And I thought that must mean I've done a good acting job and then there was some attention about the shirt and now it's just the shirt" he laughed.

On Saturday April 6, the white shirt he wore into the lake sold for an eye-watering £25,000 reflecting the phenomena that became known as ‘Darcymania’ back in 1995.

The audience at esteemed literary historian and lecturer, Susannah Fullerton’s special presentation on Monday night of Jane Austen: Her Life and Works at Narrabri’s Crossing Theatre can expect to hear more of these wonderful anecdotes and have their love of superb literature fed or even ignited as Susannah shares about all things Jane Austen, acknowledging her as the writer who changed her life. For a quarter of a century she has been president of the Jane Austen Literary Society, which is the largest literary society in Australia.

‘Jane Austen is a superstar. She is probably the most talked about, written about woman writer in the world.’

“My favourite is Emma. I think it’s the greatest novel ever written but I love all six of them.”

"And they are truly wonderful love stories, I think they are some of the best love stories ever written.”

‘I try to make it very clear to the men in the audience that she’s not just a writer for women, she’s a writer for everybody. More men should be reading her books. I think there’s lots of lessons to be learned from them.’

‘Even though we’re not wearing Regency dresses and riding in carriages today, her books are still so relevant because her understanding of human nature is there on every page of her novels and that hasn’t changed in 200 years.’

Jane Austen had a particular skill for analysing and communicating the essence of what makes people tick.

‘She looks at things that are still so relevant to us today, a young person finding a career, or coping with difficult and demanding parents, or finding that a friend is a bit of a false friend, or dealing with somebody who’s incredibly bossy and demanding or coping with a person who never stops talking.’

Susannah’s talks on classic novels are booked out months in advance at the Art Gallery of NSW. The waiting list for her international literary tours is years.

Elizabeth Campbell. Chair of ArtsNational Narrabri, is very excited to be welcoming Susannah Fullerton this week as one of seven magnificently illustrated arts talks ArtsNational have scheduled this year.

“As a community based group with a love of the arts, people can come along and learn more about the arts in a friendly, inclusive environment.”

Susannah Fullerton presents ‘Jane Austen: her Life and Works’

Monday 8 April 2024, Cinema 1, The Crossing Theatre

Arrivals from 6.30 pm for 7 pm start

Visitor tickets $35 at the door or $30 online

Published New England Times 7 April 2024

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