There are usually two main reasons people attend conferences.

The first is professional development – to gain new knowledge, to learn or consolidate professional skills and to explore new and emerging ideas. Delegates will be spoilt for choice at the 2019 IPEd national editors conference, with no less than six professional development workshops on offer prior to the conference in addition to two days jam-packed with keynote and other invited speakers, oral and poster presentations, symposia, panels, exhibitions and more.

The second major reason people attend conferences is for the networking and social opportunities – of which there will be many. But the highlight on our conference’s social calendar – indeed, perhaps of our entire year – will be the Gala Dinner on 9 May.

Styling ideas, courtesy of conference convenor Renée Otmar and organising committee member Sara Kitaoji.
Photo: Katie Lawry

The theme for the night, Melbourne Noir à la mode, is an invitation for you to ‘frock up and rock out’ – the dress code is not mandatory, but for those who do wish to dress up it can be interpreted to suit your sense of style (and humour). Think slicked-back hair styles, shiny Oxfords, two-tone brogues, flapper dresses with daring hemlines, opulent jewels, (faux) furs and feather boas, long silky gloves and lavishly extravagant evening suits.

The setting for the event will be Myer’s magnificent Mural Hall in the Melbourne CBD. This heritage-listed venue maintains its pedigree as one of Melbourne’s exceptional function venues, among the best Art Deco interiors in the state and boasting no less than eight breathtaking murals celebrating women, by renowned artist M. Napier Waller (1893–1972).

Mural Hall is perched six floors above street level and, yes, you might wish to enjoy the rooftop views for a moment, but be prepared to be transported to another time and place from the moment you walk in. The magic of Mural Hall will capture your heart, and for just one night we invite you to set yourself free to be enveloped in its exhilarating sense of romance and sophistication.

By all means, dance the night away, reunite with old friends and put faces to names as you meet colleagues you’ve been ‘friends’ with for years online, but be sure to take in the scrumptious three-course meal, wine/soft drinks and exceptional entertainment we have in store. The formal part of the night will include a comedic MC, an inspiring speaker, award ceremony for the ‘Rosie’ and, of course, music à la mode.

How to turn a boring conference dinner into a night to remember? Take one magnificent venue, an exceptional dinner menu and the best-dressed editors on the planet, and to that add flowing wine and funky entertainment. Shake (but do not stir) – and voila!

We look forward to welcoming you to our profession’s night of nights.

Renée Otmar, Conference Convenor, and the Conference Organising Committee

Registration for the Gala Dinner is now available. You do not need to be registered for the conference to attend the dinner. Details at

Ps. We hope you’ll love our Gala Dinner Poster – please help us to get the word out there by printing and displaying it in your workplace and other venues. There is a colour version and black-and-white, which can both be printed at A3 or A4 size.