A State Memorial Service was held to honour the extraordinary life of Dame Olivia Newton-John AC DBE at Hamer Hall, Arts Centre Melbourne, at 4 pm on Sunday 26 February.
The Service was a celebration of Dame Olivia's life with music and videos shown throughout the afternoon.
Master of Ceremonies, David Campbell OAM, led the memorial. He welcomed everyone in attendance, as well as those watching and listening in Australia and around the world.
Wurundjeri Elder Aunty Di Kerr OAM performed the Welcome to Country. She reflected on the occasions she had met Dame Olivia and how her music and movies had brought her and her family so much joy.
Bumpy and Jake Amy performed a touching rendition of Grace and Gratitude. The Australian National Anthem was performed by the Christ Church Grammar School Choir, the school that Dame Olivia attended.
Video tributes, photos and fond memories were shared by Dame Olivia’s husband, John Easterling, her daughter Chloe Lattanzi, and niece, Tottie Goldsmith OAM. Each recalled how as a wife, mother and aunt, Dame Olivia’s tenderness, connection, strength and laughter were always a source of affection, love and light in their worlds.
Professor Matthias Ernst, speaking on behalf of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute and Debbie Shiell speaking on behalf of the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre spoke about Dame Olivia’s extraordinary contribution and dedication as a patron and advocate for the hospital that bears her name.
They shared how Dame Olivia’s vision and leadership were integral in creating the positive treatment, education, training and research centre. Dame Olivia’s insight into the shared human experience of healing has ensured the hospitals’ dedicated wellness spaces for mind, body and spirit have helped thousands of people throughout their cancer journeys.
Richard Wilkins AM spoke on behalf of the entertainment industry. He recalled Dame Olivia’s passion for making the world a better place – not only through her music, movies, foundation and philanthropy – but through sharing her spirit with everyone she met.
Dame Olivia was then honoured with video tributes from friends from around the world, including Dolly Parton, Nicole Kidman AC, Sir Cliff Richard OBE, P!nk, Sir Barry Gibb AC CBE, Mariah Carey, Keith Urban AO, RuPaul, Hugh Jackman AC, Tina Arena AM, Richard Marx and Sir Elton John CH CBE.
Delta Goodrem AM and her band performed the final tribute of the service, with a stirring and emotional medley of Dame Olivia’s greatest hits, encouraging the crowd to join in and shine their own love and light into the room.
Master of Ceremonies, David Campbell OAM closed the service by thanking everyone for their attendance and joining the celebration of Dame Olivia’s remarkable life.
The portrait of Dame Olivia and flowers from the State Memorial Service were donated to the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre for patients and their families to enjoy.
In lieu of flowers and at the request of Dame Olivia’s family, memorial tributes may be made in the form of contributions to the Wellness Programs at the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research .
Reviewed 05 March 2023