Stork Theatre at The Stork Hotel
From 1999 Helen and Paul Madden developed Stork Theatre at their city hotel.
Popular performance readings of ancient Roman and Greek epics anchored every season. Inspired by Dennis Pryor, Melbourne’s most-loved classics luminary, the Stork presented Homer’s Odyssey or Illiad, or Virgil’s Aeneid, every year. All starred Melbourne’s leading academics, actors and artists.
Classical works by ancient playwrights, commissioned adaptations, original scripts, and keynote works of Western literature crowded the tiny Stork stage.
The Stork’s theatrical program stimulated other philosophic occasions.
A monthly series of SOCRATIC DINNERS were hosted by Prof Stan van Hooft. At each dinner twelve guests battled the philosophic questions such as ‘What is Happiness?’ Dinner guests were challenged directly on their moral choices and were not allowed to leave until, in the spirit of Socrates, they discovered an agreed point on the moral dilemma.
University in the Pub
The Stork also held UNIVERSITY in the PUB philosophy hours on the ethics of the information Age – led by Dr John Lenarcic. Held in an interactive chat-show format, the surreal musings of an information systems philosopher and his guests were blended with a humorous hypothetical or two.
The Stork Hotel was no chichi café bar. It was an historical, unpretentious, Art Deco-style pub offering hospitality, budget accommodation and meals for travellers, locals, workers and students.
Programed by Neddwellyn Jones, The Stork had live music in the front bar five nights a week and for years the Stork front bar was a prolific breeding ground for up-and-coming artists such as Wally De Backer (Gotye).