Dunera Reunion Luncheon and other important events …

Screening at Dunera Luncheon 2014
Screening of short segment of the film, featuring Dunera Boy, Mike Sondheim at Dunera Luncheon 2014. Photo by June Orford.

It was with great pleasure and a touch of sadness that A Life Unexpected Director, Sally McLean, accepted the invitation to be one of the Guest Speakers at the 2014 Dunera Association Annual Luncheon/Reunion, held in Melbourne, Victoria last week, to talk about Franz Stampfl and the film.

The sadness came from the news that another of our interviewees, Dunera Boy and past President of the Dunera Association, Mike Sondheim, had passed away earlier this year.

Mike was a delight to spend time with and chat to on camera and all of us at A Life Unexpected extend our sincere sympathies to Mike’s family and friends.  As Sally said to all those assembled after showing a segment of the film: “It was an honour and a privilege to have met and interviewed Mike and I am very grateful, not just for the project, but also personally, that I had the chance to do so.”

On a happier note, eight other Dunera Boys were present on the day and Sally, along with fellow Producer Ben Steel and Co-Producer, Marg Woodlock-McLean were delighted to make their acquaintance.

Eight Dunera Boys present at the Luncheon on November 11, 2014.  Photo by Sally McLean
Eight Dunera Boys present at the Luncheon on November 11, 2014. Photo by Sally McLean

It was a wonderful afternoon, with many laughs and reminiscences and Sally, Marg and Ben felt very welcomed and included by all in attendance.  Particular thanks to Ron Reichwald for his organizing for Sally, Ben and Marg to attend the function and his well-researched introduction to Sally’s speech!

Today also marks another important event:  the fact that 101 years ago today, Franz Ferdinand Leopold Stampfl was born in Vienna, Austria.

November 18th is always a special day here at A Life Unexpected, and we all took a moment today to reflect on how far this project has come, the exciting developments that are underway and the passion and support for the project that extends beyond the core production team to the wider ALU Community that is forming around this film.

So we’d like to take a moment to acknowledge and say thank you to our supporters, our donors, our investors, our friends and our mentors who are all keeping us focussed to keep moving forward towards the completion of this film.  It’s been a long road, but that light at the end of the tunnel is nearly upon us and the community that is forming around this project is the unexpected bonus to telling this story on film.

Happy November 18th, everyone.

‘Till next time …

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