A Night Of Better Conversation: Connection

Have we lost the art of connection?

As children each of us was almost certainly intensely connected with a parent or family member. Yet, by the time we reach adulthood, these kinds of intense connections often elude us. Loneliness seems to be increasingly, and unavoidably, the norm – on average Australians now have one close friend or less.

The technology that was designed to make us feel more connected seems to be having the opposite effect. When we live our lives through our devices, we miss out on the thrill of connecting face-to-face with another human being who, miracles of miracles, understands us. Someone who laughs at the right moments, listens tenderly to our ideas or, most thrillingly of all, dislikes the same things we do.

So, how do we re-connect? In this special Night of Better Conversation, we’ll be remembering how to make friends and build relationships. We’ll consider how our failures make us more interesting, and our vulnerabilities more appealing. We’ll talk about overcoming shyness and connecting with people with whom we seem to have nothing in common.

Join us at Hotel Esplanade for an evening of meaningful conversation, as we explore and discuss the current state of connection.  


6.00 pm     Bar opens at Hotel Esplanade
6.30 pm     Welcome & Introduction & Technique 1
7.15 pm     Technique 2 & conversation
7.45 pm     Technique 3 & conversation
8.15 pm     Technique 4 & conversation
8.45 pm     Permission to Speak Freely
9.00 pm     Event Concludes, Bar Open for Continued Conversation


'Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation.'

– Oscar Wilde


Myke Bartlett is a journalist, writer and teacher. He joined the School of Life Australia as a founding faculty member in 2013. Since then, he has taught and devised a range of sessions and classes, mostly focused on the art of conversation. He has written for some of Australia's most respected cultural publications and was the arts editor at The Weekly Review for the best part of a decade. As a journalist, he has spoken to some of the world's most interesting people and does his best to find something interesting to talk about with everyone else. Despite years of intensive study, he is still baffled by small talk.

Event Partner

This event is proudly presented in partnership with Hotel Esplanade.


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The Esplanade and The School of Life have a commitment to providing enlightened hospitality to its customers. Our shared mission is to create events and environments where meaningful connections can flourish.


Our lives are so often filled with superficial talk, from office chitchat to commentaries on last night's television. How can we have conversations that inspire us to think in new ways, that stimulate our curiosity and that prompt us to say things we've never said before?

A Night of Better Conversation has been designed to help us enjoy rich and memorable conversations about things that really matter in life, inspired by the ideas of great thinkers and philosophers.

This interactive and social evening is split in to equal parts facilitated and presented content and group conversation. Participants will be encouraged to meet and converse with as many different people as they can to explore and interact a diverse range of ideas and ways of thinking.

Buy tickets for
A Night Of Better Conversation: Connection





Full price: $45
Concession: $36
+ booking fee

Health Care Card, Seniors Card, Pensioner Concession Card and current Student Cards.

Please note that we are unable to offer refunds or transfers. If you can no longer attend this event you are welcome to share your ticket with someone else, which they can present at the door to gain entry. Please see our Terms & Conditions on Refunds, Transfers & Credits for further details.

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