In the lead up to this year’s Real Festival, heading to Penrith’s Tench Reserve from Friday, September 15, one local filmmaker is bringing us back to the last event with a very special documentary.
Many may remember that back in 2019, the aerial arts show ‘All That We Are’ was a highlight of the Real Festival, with 30 volunteers harnessed and craned 30 meters into the sky over the Nepean River.
Lasya Meka was one person to respond to the call out, inspired by her love of the arts.
“I was newly moved to Jordan Springs at the time, and I’m really interested in any dance, music, cultural activities, those kinds of things, and I just happened to see this advertisement on the Penrith Council website about something that involved music and dance, and they were looking for locals to take part,” she said.
“I was really interested in the cultural event, but the aerial part of it, I was quite not sure about it, because I’m quite scared of heights!”
Recalling the very first meeting she had with the other volunteers and three directors, Meka said she almost didn’t make it into the air.
“I said I’d do the groundwork but I wouldn’t do the aerial part, but they ended up persuading me during the rehearsals, just to try it,” she said.
“It was all very much new to me, but I think later on, I found the courage, and I could do it.”
But, once the day arrived, Meka couldn’t be more elated that she did it.
Local mum and fellow volunteer Bec Higgins agreed with the sentiment, despite sharing her own jitters.
“It was the best feeling in the world, it was really indescribable,” she said.
“It was nothing like anything I’d ever done before, but I would do it again!”
Now, a documentary of the same name is hitting the big screen.
Filmed throughout the rehearsal process, and on the night of the big performance, ‘All That We Are’ shares even more about the volunteers’ personal journeys as they discover their creativity and confidence through the experience.
Having been quite involved with its creation, Meka said she can’t wait to see the finished product.
“I am very much excited to see the whole documentary,” she said.
“I haven’t seen it, I’ve just seen the glimpses that have been shared on social media platforms, so I can’t wait to check it out.”
The film will be showing in the Ron Mulock Room at Penrith Panthers this Sunday, September 10 from 4pm.
After the event itself drew such a crowd, Higgins said she couldn’t wait to bring the community together again.
“I think the crowd on the day was bigger than what I was expecting, and to see so many people come and see that, I think if we had the same sort of support for the documentary, it would be amazing,” she said.
To book your tickets, visit bit.ly/3Ewvacc.
Cassidy Pearce is a news and entertainment journalist with The Western Weekender. A graduate of the University of Technology Sydney, she has previously worked with Good Morning Macarthur and joined the Weekender in 2022.