William Yang My Generation

(10.45am, Saturday 15 June 2013, Dendy Opera Quays)

Thank you, Leigh, [Small, CEO]. Hello, everyone, and a very warm welcome to this very special screening. I would like firstly to acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the people of 200 nations who live in our City.

I would also like to acknowledge and thank William Yang, who is here today.

This year marks the 60th anniversary of Sydney Film Festival and I'd like to take this opportunity to salute all those who, from its very beginning and up to today, have fostered its growth as one of the world's great film festivals.

It is always stimulating and thought-provoking. It reflects Sydney's own diversity and the city's abiding fascination with the diversity of the world.

As we have been for the past 18 years, the City of Sydney is a proud sponsor of the 2013 Festival - and we have a terrific Festival Hub in our Lower Town Hall for people to meet, find out about what's on, hear talks, see live performances or browse a terrific range of film-related books.

It's open from noon until midnight on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, and from 5pm to midnight other days, so I hope you can make it there.

As part of our sponsorship, we also support this free community screening each year.

The films selected are always interesting, but I think this year's film - William Yang: My Generation - is something really special.

Many of you will know William's long history as a much-loved Sydney identity. He's been involved in our artistic and cultural life for more than four decades - in other words, for a large part of the life of the Sydney Film Festival itself!

He has worked as a photographer, chronicling the life and personalities of Sydney; as an artist, a theatre performer, and as a social essayist.

He is also a prominent figure in the gay community, and through much of his work, a champion of the LGBTI communities of Sydney.

The film gives us a window on his world, and in doing so, illuminates some of the story of this amazing city we all call home.

I hope you will all enjoy it. Thank you for coming today, and I hope you can make it to the Festival Hub.