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Storyteller and host


Hilary Harper is an all-round communicator: incorrigible book-nerd, radio host, interviewer, story-maker, writer, literary and journalistic awards judge, presenter, and MC; she can turn her vocabulary and smarts to almost anything.

A childhood in country Victoria gave Hilary a sense of radio's exciting possibilities as a storytelling medium, and jobs as an editor, gardener, industrial laundry hand, switchboard operator and subtitler for the Deaf made for great fodder. But it's her ability to draw out others' stories that make her an asset to any event.

Current work

In radio she's done music and arts reports, current affairs, live event broadcasting, lifestyle talkback and magazine-style programs, snappy news pieces and long-form one-on-one interviews, as well as executive producing special programming. She started out on ABC Radio Melbourne as a traffic reporter, slipping in the occasional haiku, and has since presented every program there across the week. She's helmed Saturday mornings with playful curiosity since 2008.

She's also much in demand as a regular interviewer and panel chair at The Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas, and the Melbourne Writers Festival, as well as regional events. Government bodies, banks and arts organisations have all hired her to chair sessions and bring out the best in interviewees. She has a knack for getting to the emotional heart of the issue while skilfully untangling the logical threads of a topic, all with a wry, dry wit.

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