Filming recommences: MCG and the 1956 Olympics – next stop … Queensland!

1956 Olympians Bob Joyce, Marg Woodlock-McLean and Neil Robbins survey the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) where they marched out nearly 60 years ago as members of the 1956 Australian Olympic Team. Photo by Sally McLean
1956 Olympians Bob Joyce, Marg Woodlock-McLean and Neil Robbins survey the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) where they marched out nearly 60 years ago as members of the 1956 Australian Olympic Team. Photo by Sally McLean

It has been a busy time behind the scenes here at A Life Unexpected.  We completed our first major shoot day for 2015 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in April and today, thanks to our amazing group of donors and supporters, the team heads off to Queensland for our next round of interviews.

Geoff Henke AO during his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.
Geoff Henke AO during his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.

On a fine April day almost exactly 8 weeks ago (that also happened to be Director, Sally McLean’s birthday), our intrepid team, along with a new group of interviewees, took over a small section of the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground stadium to film more interviews and capture some more of the unexpected magic this project produces.

1956 Olympians Neil Robbins, Marg Woodlock-McLean and Bob Joyce during filming in the stands of the MCG.  Photo by Stefano Ferro
1956 Olympians Neil Robbins, Marg Woodlock-McLean and Bob Joyce during filming in the stands of the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro

A special highlight was being able to bring three of the 1956 Olympians together to share their memories of Franz, but also of their time competing at the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne.  Bob Joyce (110m Hurdles), Marg Woodlock-McLean (Shot Put) and Neil Robbins (3,000m Steeplechase) all arrived in their Olympic blazers (our request) to be interviewed about being the members of Franz’s first squad of Australian athletes from 1955-1956, but also reminisce about the 1956 Games – while actually sitting in the stadium where they were held – the MCG.

1968 Olympian, Allen Crawley at the MCG after his interview. Photo by Stefano Ferro.
1968 Olympian, Allen Crawley at the MCG after his interview. Photo by Stefano Ferro.

We were also delighted to be able to welcome Geoff Henke AO (Chairman of the Olympic Winter Institute of Australia), Alf Lazer (Emeritus Honorary Member of Fédération Internationale du Sport Universitaire – FISU), Allen Crawley (1966 Commonwealth Games & 1968 Olympian, Long Jump & 1966 Commonwealth Games Bronze Medallist, 4 x 110 yards Relay) and Ken Roche AO (dual Commonwealth Games gold medalist, 1962 & 1966 and 1964 Olympian, Hurdles) to our line-up of illustrious personalities who worked with or knew Franz Stampfl.

Alf Lazer AM after his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.
Alf Lazer AM after his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.

We are very grateful to the Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) for their support of the project and for taking such good care of us during the shoot.  They were a joy to work with and gave us such great support and help during the day.  We are delighted to be able to add them to our list of supporters and thank them very much for helping us make the day the success it was.

1964 Olympian, Ken Roche (400m Hurdles) after his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.
1964 Olympian, Ken Roche (400m Hurdles) after his interview at the MCG. Photo by Stefano Ferro.

And now, we are on our way to Queensland – first Brisbane and then the Gold Coast – to bring into the ALU interviewee family four more fascinating people to talk about Franz and their time working with him.

These include 1956 Olympian, Lois Jackman, Indigenous linguist, Dr Eve Fesl, Athletics coach Tony Booth and dual Olympian, multi World Record holder and former Mayor of the Gold Coast, Ron Clarke.

As always, we are still taking donations to help complete the film via the Documentary Australia Foundation, and any help spreading the word is most appreciated.  You’ll find all the information on how to donate on the official site here: http://alifeunexpected.com/donate/.

Direct donation link on the DAF site is here: https://www.documentaryaustralia.com.au/film/donate/482/a-life-unexpected-the-man-behind-the-miracle-mile

‘Till next time …

The A Life Unexpected Team

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