The Wheeler Centre

The Wheeler Centre is Melbourne’s home for smart, passionate and entertaining public talks on every topic.

Across 200+ events each year, and a unique collection of videos, podcasts and original writing, you’ll find some of our finest local and international writers and thinkers sharing their expertise, their imaginations and their ideas.

From inception, the idea grew with the passion, belief and support of the Victorian State Government, gaining unstoppable momentum. In 2008, when Melbourne was designated a UNESCO City of Literature, this heralded the establishment of the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas – a vibrant new hub for a diverse range of literary and ideas based organisations and activities. The aim: to provide a home and important focal point for the conversations that matter to Victoria and indeed Australia. As the Centre itself took its physical shape within a newly renovated and dedicated wing of the State Library of Victoria, its position was secured ahead of the official opening with the commitment of patrons, Maureen and Tony Wheeler of Lonely Planet. From that day, the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas became The Wheeler Centre.

Since the first public event in February 2010, the Centre's story and journey has continued to unfurl and grow. In over five years of existence, The Wheeler Centre has established a reputation for ambition, variety and quality. It is firmly established as a leading arts organisation, dedicated to the dual purpose of being both a vibrant hub for the writing and literary sector and producing a diverse programme of public conversations and events.

Over 1800 speakers have participated in more than 1100 public conversations since 2010.

The 2020 Stella Prize Winner in Conversation

14 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Louise Swinn

The Stella Prize was founded to elevate the writing of Australian women with...

Lingo Bingo

16 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Abdul Hammoud and Thabani Tshuma

The spoken-word scene in Melbourne is vibrant, inclusive and thriving.

Here and Gone Edition

20 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Stella Charls, Ronnie Scott, Ellena Savage, Laura...

For this edition of The Next Big Thing, we present a handful of writers...

We Are Nemeses: Talking Experimental Comedy

22 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Vidya Rajan, Alistair Baldwin, Chloe Alison...

What happens when two sides of the same coin try to monetise that coin...

Arnold Zable

24 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Arnold Zable and Sami Shah

Arnold Zable is a much-loved Australian writer and a life-long traveller.

I Am An Animal: A Wildlife Fundraiser

29 April 2020
The Wheeler Centre
Sophie Cunningham, Emily Bitto, Helen Garner,...

Humans are animals – but we’re letting our fellow creatures down.