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Archive for August, 2009

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Oh Mercy, Privileged Woes

Described as “like a young version of Augie March crossed with The Shins” (Faster Louder), Oh Mercy’s style is consistently difficult to pin down. What is certain is that, while they cite classic rock’n’roll and folk influences, the songwriting partnership of Alexander Gow and Thomas Savage creates music unmistakably of their own style. Gow and Savage, the duo at the heart of Melbourne four-piece Oh Mercy, blend evocative and intelligent lyricism with a strong pop sensibility on their debut album Privileged Woes, showcasing the depth of the young songwriters’ polished pop brilliance.

Following on from their successful debut EP In The Nude For Love, Privileged Woes was recorded in the spare room; the size of a single bed, by Myles Wootton – the band literally had to put the mattress against the wall to record. After touring continuously for 12 months supporting many other great Australian musicians, Oh Mercy is currently on their own National tour in support of their new album. The group is made up of Alexander Gow on guitar and vocals, Thomas Savage playing guitar and piano, Eliza Lam is on bass and Angus Tarnawsky percussion.

Privileged Woes features the current radio singles Seemed Like A Good Idea and Lay Everything On Me; with the third single to be announced, Get You Back. Privileged Woes is out now. So what are you waiting for, get your copy and check out tour dates right here!

Overload Poetry Festival 2009

The Overload Poetry Festival is a 10 day celebration of Melbourne’s thriving poetry scene which has been running since 2002. From 4-13 September 2009, the festival will showcase leading Australian and international poets and provide a platform for emerging poets. The festival aims to reach out to the wider community with the message that poetry is for everybody to enjoy and to nurture emerging and existing local poets. The idea is simple: a festival which mixes readings, special events such as slams, workshops, book/CD launches, tributes, multi-art nights and showcases.

This year’s festival is taking the spoken word to a whole new level, with poetry slammers, hip-hop artists and experimental forms of poetry gracing the stages of Melbourne’s watering holes and cultural hubs. The festival is embracing technology to bring an international flavour. Thanks to Skype, the festival will feature a live slam competition, pitting Overload’s poetry prowess against the best of the Bristol Poetry Festival. The winner receives an all expenses paid trip to the other festival.

Overload Poetry Festival is the only festival in Australia to be based around regular poetry haunts such as The Spinning Room, Dan O’Connell’s and Dantes, with around 40 readings across Melbourne annually. Other venues include the Northcote Social Club, NGV Australia, ACMI, Glitch Bar, Blue Velvet, ET’s Hotel and the Carlton Courthouse Theatre. A full festival program is available at

The Venn Diagram of Social Media

We were scouting the web and found this, the Venn diagram showing the psychological forces at work among users of social networking tools — a new shirt from the comedy geniuses at Despair, Inc.

AFTRS Open Day

Interested in learning more about what’s on offer at Australia’s national screen arts and broadcast School in 2010?

AFTRS is hosting its annual Open Day in Sydney on Saturday 5th September to Sunday 6th September 2009 from 10am to 3pm on both days. Applications for AFTRS 2010 courses open on September 1, so now is the time to explore your options.

Some of the courses on offer at AFTRS in 2010 include:

* Graduate Certificate in Art Direction
* Graduate Certificate in Costume Design
* Graduate Diploma in Production Design

What you will find and can do at AFTRS OPEN DAYS:

* Course information booths – talk to AFTRS teaching staff about the course you are interested in
* Radio studio drop in zone – drop in chat to AFTRS Radio teaching staff and check out the amazing gear
* LAMP (Laboratory of Advanced Media Production) drop in zone – drop in chat to AFTRS Digital Media teaching staff and get inspired by the latest in multi platform, animation, game design & virtual worlds
* Short n sweet – pull up a beanbag and watch some award winning AFTRS films
* Back of house ’sneak peek’ – take a behind the scenes look at the scale of our studios complete with sets ready for a shoot
* AFTRS Library – open and ready to dazzle you with information about our fantastic resources
* AFTRS Student Services – open and on hand to assist with information about applying to AFTRS
* Talk: Around the World on 80 screens by AFTRS Distribution Manager Ruth Saunders (Saturday Only)
* Specific Course presentations every half hour…

One weekend only! Entry is free. For more information go to

Thirsty Artist Competition

As inspired and original as the venue itself, The Darlo Bar will once again host the Thirsty Artist competition on Thursday 27th August at 7:00pm.

The night celebrates local Australian talent by exhibiting a selection of works completed by six diverse artists.

Asked only to create pieces which represent their artistic capabilities, be it photography or sculptures, the finalists each are placed in one of The Darlo’s hotel rooms where they can exhibit their finest pieces. Each artist is given total creative freedom within their space, including their choice of music and the arrangement of the room.

Guests are invited to mingle amongst the rooms whilst enjoying the $1 Hahn Superdry’s or the bespoke Thirsty Artist wine. The winner, selected by the Darlo staff, receives their very own case of Thirsty Artist wine with their winning piece printed on the label. The wine will be sold at the Darlo Bottleshop for $9 for the month of September.

This year’s finalists are:
– Stephanie Geddes
– Hedi Hereth
– Lucy Loneragan
– Kelly Geddes
– Alan Harris
– Jae Reno

The title of Thirsty Artist was last year crowned by Terezka Beck as the inaugural winner of the contest with her ‘baby elephant’ painting.

What: Thirsty Artist Competition
When: Thursday 27th August at 7:00pm
Where: Royal Sovereign Hotel, 306 Liverpool Street, Darlinghurst
More Info:

First date bars in Sydney – Top 10

Whether you are looking to make a good first impression or scouting for something that is charming, stylish and whimsical to take that someone special, you can’t go wrong with these trending establishments. Break the ice in style at these classy drinking spots.

Bennelong Bar, Opera House
Ambience There’s really nothing like sitting beneath the sails of Jørn Utzon’s Opera House, sinking back in curved chocolate seats with a glass of wine and taking in the view. What to order Award-winning sommelier John Clancy’s wine list runs the gamut from the Barossa to Bordeaux and everywhere vine-worthy in between. Clancy’s list also includes magnums of 1990 Dom Perignon (you know. Just in case). The crab sandwiches are essential. In the know There’s not a bad seat in the house – every plush seat has killer views of Sydney Harbour – but it’s best at sunset.

Shore Club, Manly
Ambience Shore Club isn’t just a summer bar – it offers the best of beachside drinking in winter, too. The roof at Shore Club peels down to show the beachfront and let in the breeze. What to order Order the Pimms cup to share. Trust us. In the know Head right up to the roof for a private tent – there are heaters up there in the winter so you won’t freeze.

Zeta Bar, Hilton Sydney

Ambience Head bartender Grant Collins and company can make you anything you care to name. The space is sophisticated with dark nooks, squishy banquettes and a long, polished bar. And if it’s a bit of fresh air you’re in need of, there’s a huge balcony looking over the QVB.  What to order Try a ‘sensory experience’ cocktail – fun, 10-minute experiences that involve being blindfolded and played music from an iPod. The ‘Tiki’ involves being sprayed with coconut scent and drinking out of a huge pineapple. In the know The lounges out the back are a great place to hide if you’ve had one too many Manhattans (or the date is going especially well… ).


The Octopus’s Garden Party

With the launch of her first collection as recently as 2007 at Rosemount Australia Fashion Week, Donna Sgro has taken great strides in creating her fashion design label from the ground up. Reflecting her independent and creative attitude, Donna has designed a label that reflects a spirit that is quirky, playful, colourful and light-hearted.

Donna studied Fashion & Textiles at the University of Sydney, Technology, where she graduated with First Class Honours in 2007. While still studying she built a solid portfolio of achievement including having her work displayed in exhibition at the Powerhouse Museum and winning the Fresh Fruits Competition.

Prior to studying fashion design, Donna competed an Arts Degree at the University of Sydney, where she studied Art History & Theory and Philoshophy. It was during this time that Donna developed an extensive knowledge of modernist art movements and cinema – with surrealism, dada and futurism defining the background to her creative thinking.

Set in the theme of the Curious Deep Sea, help celebrate and send local fashion designer Donna Sgro to Paris! Special underwater deep sea screenings and music from hosts Jay Katz & Miss Death Featuring a Mini Market Installation from some of your favourite designers Donna Sgro, Made by White and Twiggy. Plus a Lucky door prize for the best dressed, Squid and Jellyfish Performers and raffles with great prizes!

What: The Octopus’s Garden Party
When: Saturday 5th September 2009 from 8pm
Where: Mumeson Archives
Address: Cnr Parramatta Road & Trafalgar Street, Annandale.

Melbourne Underground Film Festival 2009

The Melbourne Underground Film Festival (MUFF) is back to celebrate MUFF X – the festival’s prestigious tenth year of championing alternative cinema in Melbourne. MUFF is thrilled to announce its highly anticipated 2009 lineup and full schedule of events.

Opening night at the newly converted Embassy will deliver Into the Shadows – a fascinating and important documentary about the state of this country’s film industry and the challenges faced by Australian independent cinema throughout the past century. It features interviews by Rolf De Heer (The Tracker), George Miller (Mad Max), Andrew Denton, and many more film practitioners and representatives.

The 2009 festival programmers are proud to present a selection of exciting and provocative pictures from interstate, overseas, and many from the festival’s home town of Melbourne. MUFF may be the only chance Melbourne audiences will have to see many of these films.

Local highlights include Sleeper – a thriller starring wrestler Scott ‘Raven’ Levy as a mute serial killer with an aversion to daylight, Eraser Children, an ambitious and absorbing sci-fi flick set in a futuristic dystopia, and Carmilla Hyde, a darkly seductive twist on the traditional Jekyll & Hyde story. International highlights include Impolex, the bizarre story of a WWII soldier in search of undetonated German missiles, and Modern Love is Automatic, a comedy about an apathetic nurse who moonlights as a dominatrix.

MUFF X will run from Saturday 22nd August until Sunday 30th August 2009. This year’s venues will be Noise, Loop, Glitch, and the Embassy (the old QBH).

Human Rights Arts and Film Festival – Call for entries

The Human Rights Arts and Film Festival (or her-aff as we like to call it) was founded in 2007 by Evelyn Tadros, Naziath Mantoo and a dedicated team of passionate her-aff-ers who had a vision to make human rights accessible, relevant and significant to the broader Australian community. Australia’s freshest and most important Festival is just around the corner! Bringing you the boldest films and artwork from Australia and around the globe, HRAFF will challenge, touch and inspire audiences from all walks of life.

Submissions for the Human Rights Arts and Film Festival (HRAFF) are now open! All emerging and established filmmakers with a passion for human rights are encouraged to enter. HRAFF is looking for music videos, shorts, features and documentaries to include in its 2010 Festival program. The only criterion is that the film engages with human rights and social justice issues. In 2010, HRAFF will again travel Australia wide with events and screenings taking place in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane. There is also over $5000 worth of cash and prizes up for grabs!

Earlybird Deadline: 4th September, 2009 – cost $10
Final Deadline: 6th November, 2009 – cost $20

Urban Chill winners announced

Our competition for the Urban Chill album giveaway has now closed. Thank you to everyone that entered we had an overwhelming response. The winners are listed below and your prizes will be sent this week. Thanks again to Universal Music Australia for your generous support!

M. Munroe – Fremantle, WA
B.Simpson – Bathurst, NSW
K.Sullivan – East St Kilda, VIC
J.Koury – Stanmore, NSW
S.Olden – Windsor, QLD

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