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Q&A with Aldo Longobardi, Drama Coordinator — Concordia Campus

1. Where were you before this and what persuaded you to join Concordia?

I've been at a number of places before Concordia: Loreto College as a Year Level Coordinator and Italian and Drama teacher; Eynesbury Senior College as Drama specialist teacher, Assistant Principal: Student Well-being and Engagement and Associate Principal; Wilderness School as Head of Drama, and most recently the SACE Board as an Education Consultant in the Arts and Pathways faculty. Truth be told, I was missing being in the Drama classroom and encouraging the creativity of young artists. Concordia's reputation for innovative learning is what attracted me to the position.

2. Three words to describe you.

Encouraging, generous, creative.

3. What is your motivation or inspiration in your role?

Helping young people learn to lean into their vulnerability and achieve things they didn't think they were capable of motivates me. Everything we do in Drama - and in the Arts generally - takes a huge amount of courage and vulnerability, especially when you are presenting your work to an audience. You open yourself up to criticism and you show sides to yourself that others don't necessarily get to see. There is also always the chance in live theatre that things will go wrong, as they often do, and that's kind of thrilling. It's a feeling I have experienced so many times myself as an actor and it's wonderful to see students walk off stage with that same thrill and actually feel proud of themselves for having given that performance to an audience. As a teacher and a director, small moments are huge successes and it's a privilege to be part of young people's journey to experiencing this as artists.

4. If you had a superpower, what would it be?

It would be the power to add an extra few hours to the day, or at least to slow time down or freeze it altogether so I can get everything done that I need to in the day!

5. Who would you invite to a dinner party of six guests and why? Alternatively, tell us something you might like to share that we could not possibly know?

  • Nigella Lawson - she inspired my love for cooking and entertaining. I'd probably cooking one of her recipes anyway!
  • Kylie Minogue - Been a fan since I was eight! This is my one opportunity to have her round to dinner!
  • Jessie and Lennie Ware - I listen to their podcast 'Table Manners' religiously. I love their sense of humour, their obsession with food, their hilarious banter, and the interesting conversations they have with their guests around the dinner table on their podcast. I think they'd be great fun to have at dinner and would get along with the other guests famously.
  • Julie Taymor - my theatrical hero. I admire her creative brain and I'd want to listen to her talk about her creative process and ideas and just be inspired by her.
  • Frida Kahlo - I have had a bit of a Frida obsession since the first time I watched Taymor's film about her. She was a woman who suffered so much in her life but was able to paint her own reality and find beauty in the darkness. She challenged convention and was truly and authentically herself. I find her very inspirational.