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Sydney Muse – Feast of Strangers


Thu 9 Nov 2017, 6:30pm–9:00pm

Where: Camperdown Commons, 31A Mallett Street, Camperdown, New South Wales

Restrictions: All Ages

Listed by: bengill90

What if conversation were more than just small talk? What if you had the opportunity to have a meaningful exchange with another person and spark new relationships, new ideas, and new outlooks on life? Would you take it?

The Feast of Strangers is an event based on an original idea by Oxford scholar Theodore Zeldin. It seeks to promote openness and curiosity through a sincere exchange between two people, away from judgement and convention (see FAQs below).

The events pair two strangers together for sincere, rewarding exchanges that probe beyond small talk. You are each given a Menu of Conversation that looks like a restaurant menu, with starters, fish, grills, dessert, etc., but instead of descriptions of food dishes, each heading contains topics to talk about, 25 in all.

A ‘Muse’ then introduces the meal and explains how to proceed and the rules of what is more than a game. Each of you chooses a topic, and when you have finished discussing it, the other chooses a topic, and so you go through the Menu. This conversation takes two hours, though it has been known to last seven hours.

We invite you to step outside your comfort zone and be open to not only learning more about another person but about yourself. This is, in many ways, what life is is all about! For further background information, please visit Oxford Muse website.

Sydney Muse – Feast of Strangers will be held at Camperdown Commons. The cost of your ticket goes towards covering venue hire and providing a light dinner. Drinks and other non-alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase during the evening.

Be sure to book early as capacity is limited!

If you have any questions, please email Ben Gill at

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q) So I really talk to one person for two hours?

A) Yes, for real. One person. Two hours. At first, it’s kind of awkward and uncomfortable and nearly everyone is a little anxious beforehand. But, you embrace the weirdness confidently knowing that of the 120 people who’ve been through our previous events, none have ever reported a bad time. It really isn’t too bad and can be kind of beautiful if you let it.

Q) Can I leave if I don’t like the person?

A) Yes, you are your own person and can make your own decisions. Though remember the point of this isn’t necessarily to make friends. There will be opinions you don’t agree with. There may even be some conflict. If you approach it with an open and curious mind (as opposed to trying to win an argument) you may find you learn something new and gain a new sense of appreciation of an opposing view. This being said, all conversationalists are asked to be respectful of each other’s differences and if at any point you feel uncomfortable, please let one of the event coordinators know.

Q) What’s for dinner?

A number of hot and cold platters will be provided on the night for conversationalists to enjoy a light dinner. There will be a range of options to cater for the various dietary requirements, though do let us know of any specific allergies/requirements when purchasing your ticket.

The event is hosted by the Sydney Global Shapers Hub, an initiative of the World Economic Forum. The Global Shapers Community is a network of Hubs developed and led by young people who are exceptional in their potential, their achievements, and their drive to make a contribution to their communities. For more information please visit Global Shapers website.