Bizarre 5 – Convention Review: Starwalking

Bizarre was “the magazine of the 29th Australian Science Fiction Convention, Danse Macabre.” Here’s a piece from page 3 of Bizarre 5.

Convention Review: Starwalking

September 8-10 1989 at the Melbourne Town House

Report by Karen Pender

I must admit I did enjoy Starwalking. It quite rapidly became known as “Stair Walking” as the hotel’s only lift had suffered a breakdown and the convention facilities were on the fifth floor. We were all very fit by Sunday.

There was, of course, a huge amount of Star Wars Merchandise for sale; I hadn’t realised that so many varieties of toys had been produced. The auction was chock-full of Star Wars stuff as well.

Jeremy Bullock was one of the most charming people I have ever met. Wonderfully British. You could imagine him playing the role of a Lord or an English gentleman to perfection. I hadn’t realised he played the psychologist in Chocky. His wife, Maureen, was very attractive. The GoH spot was lively — it could have gone on longer without anyone becoming bored.

For me it was a great convention as it was the first at which I received some awards. I won Third Prize in the Art Show for my “Things Party” (there will be more of those at Danse Macabre) and the first Artisans Award from Threads, the Handicraft and Design society.

I was also involved in the prize-winning Bill and Ben entry in the Masquerade – First Prize for Presentation and Third Prize for Design/Reproduction.

Bill (Ian Gunn) and Ben (Danny Heap) were dressed with real flower pots for their arm- and leg-sections (guess who had the job of stringing those together). The Vogon (James Allen) had great delight in destroying the Weed (Beky Tully was on the bottom of that, holding it up). I was trying to narrate but the audience kept laughing so much the skit went on much longer than expected. It was all great fun!

As with most conventions, slip-ups and mistakes did occur, but on the whole it seemed to go very well. There was a specially constructed star-ship bridge which glowed under ultraviolet light. Registration went well and ran smoothly. The closing ceremony, as with most conventions I’ve been to recently, ran too long. The special film preview was Blind Fury, which has since appeared in the cinemas. It was full of cliches, was vaguely Japanese and corny in spots.

Starwalking was a friendly con and I hope to have as much fun at the next convention I go to.

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