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Mirror Sydney Podcast

May 11, 2020


At the start of this year, audio producer and musician Lia Tsamoglou and I started work on an audio-series of stories from Mirror Sydney. Now I’m excited to announce that it is available as a podcast, with the first two episodes released today, May 11th, and each of the remaining four episodes weekly on a Monday thereafter. You can listen to the episodes at or search for Mirror Sydney on your podcast app.

For those of you less familiar with Mirror Sydney, here’s a description of the project by one of my favourite Australian writers, Shaun Prescott:

Sydney is an increasingly impenetrable city, shapeshifting and unknowable. Beneath the surface of its 21st century globalised homogeneity, traces of the city’s history are allowed to remain, but it takes determination to find them. 

Sydney is subject to many and varied official histories, its story is really the story of British colonisation. But no broad account can hope to capture the particular tension of our present moment, standing as we are with one foot in a receding past, the other in a strange encroaching future. Vanessa Berry’s Mirror Sydney blog captures this melancholy disjunct, focused as it is on the minutiae of the sprawl. Berry’s investigations usually start at a point of idle fascination: a notorious op shop at the edge of the airport, Sydney’s least peaceful footpath, newly redundant train routes. What then usually unfolds is a vivid evocation of urban space, not just its streets, people and infrastructure, but the otherwise inaccessible ambience of its former life. 

Berry’s 2017 book Mirror Sydneya lavish account of Sydney’s “suburban mythologies and unusual details”prompted Sydney musician and radio producer Lia Tsamoglou (Melodie Nelson, Moonmilk) to make contact. After a lengthy email correspondence it emerged that they actually lived on the same inner west street. Tsamoglou’s light-of-touch, atmospheric sensibility is a perfect fit for this project, which is narrated by Berry.

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