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June 14, 2024

Culture roundup: Nov 22–29, 2017

Latest News

Can I have more?

Whooo hooo! Byron Bay business community donates $1,360 to BayFM… ‘Please Sir, can I have some more?’ should have...

Other News

Police make arrest over Wallum protests

Save Wallum protectors, a NSW MLC and a retired magistrate have questioned the use of police resources after those supporting efforts to save rare ecological heathland in Brunswick Heads from urban development were contacted by Tweed-Byron Police Detectives.

Help save the Big Scrub rainforest with science

There is only one per cent of the Big Scrub rainforest in Northern New South Wales remaining. This has left what were once mighty rainforests now critically endangered and facing the threat of extinction because of a serious lack of genetic diversity.

Local runners impress at national championships

Byron Bay Runners are producing some of the best track runners in the country, with five of our senior squad athletes finishing in the top ten in their events at Athletics Australia’s recent national championships held in Adelaide, back in April.

Is consciousness necessary?

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Incredibly biased

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New Australian Marbles Champion

After a five-year hiatus the battle for the title of Australian Marbles Champion again took place as part of the Old & Gold Festival held in Brunswick Heads last Saturday.

Pottering in the Hills

Diana of Ilanga Studio has been potting in the hills of Federal for more than twenty years drawing on inspiration from the natural world. Her tableware ranges from stoneware pieces in vibrant, deep-sea blue-greens, rainforest russet red-browns to elegant white porcelain enhanced by pierced tealight holders. She is having a Christmas sale of her decorative homewares this Saturday and Sunday 10am–4pm. 624 Federal Drive, Federal.

Periwinkle Xmas

The Periwinkle Christmas Fair has become something of an institution around these parts.

Each year, Periwinkle Preschool opens its grounds to celebrate Christmas with the community. A truly magical space is created for the Annual Periwinkle Christmas Fair. This year promises to delight children and parents alike with an enchanted land filled with wholesome fun activities, stalls, delicious food and fantastic entertainment including onstage music, circus acts and story and song sessions.

Enjoy fantastic entertainment with local circus legends The Space Cowboy and his miraculous acts and Dr Hubble’s amazing bubbles, as well as plenty of live music from our talented Periwinkle Parents.
The story and song sessions will be hosted by Periwinkle founder Susan Perrow and Periwinkle teacher Simon McLean. No Steiner session would be complete without craft! Get yourself all felt up with craft activities including creating felt ball and branch round necklaces, silk ribbon and bag painting, crystal fossicking and the new addition of the make a gnome or fairy stall.

In the spirit of healthy, organic meals that students enjoy each day at Periwinkle Preschool, organic nachos and mezze plates will be on offer at the fair, lovingly handmade by talented parents and filled with local produce. And don’t forget to stop at the snack and dessert table with a range of luscious treats and also locally made Flyin’ Fox ice blox. Lots of wholesome home-crafted bespoke fun for the whole family!

Saturday 2 December at Periwinkle Preschool at 5 Sunrise Beach, Byron Bay, 10am–2pm.

Bush Poet launches new book

Ray Essery
Ray Essery

Ray Essery is one of the great characters of this region. A dairy farmer turned bush poet, Ray tells it how it is, down to earth, no bullshit and bush poems. Everywhere I travel out west if I tell people I am from Mullumbimby they say, ‘Do you know Ray Essery?’ Ray gave up milking cows for milking his creativity and he’s never stopped filling buckets! He’s got a new book launching at the Brunswick Heads Bowlo this Saturday night. Many artists will be appearing including Garry Fogarty, top Australian poet from Queensland, and local artists including John Hill and Cora James – so come for the comedy, laughter and song! From 7.30pm. Free.

The Art of Mullum

After months of preparation, national media exposure, the collaboration of galleries nationwide sees 335 entries in the inaugural Art Piece Gallery 30×30 art prize; 231 of those works have been selected to hang at the gallery. With a first prize of $6,000 it’s clear little works can bring big bucks. Susi Muddiman OAM, director of Tweed Regional Gallery and Margaret Olley Art Centre and Amanda Penrose Hart, recipient of this year’s Gallipoli art prize, will be judging. There is also a best still life in show, awarded by Still @ the Centre.

Owner and director of Art Piece Gallery, Nadine Abensur, has been thinking about establishing a prize for some time and the gallery’s 10th anniversary seemed like the perfect opportunity to do so. The small format is approachable, intimate, affordable and respects Mullumbimby’s reputation as the biggest little (art) town.

Entries have come from as far as Utopia and Tasmania from artists with well-established practices and from talented newcomers.

A notable entry comes from Sha Sarwari, a multidisciplinary visual artist, who came to Australia by boat as a refugee from Afghanistan. In his work Sha aims to explore the contemporary discourse of refugee and asylum seeker. His work is influenced by his personal experience of seeking asylum in Australia and the journey that he went through to becoming a refugee.

Marisa Purcell from Olsen Gallery, Karlee Rawkins from Harvey Galleries, Robert Fenton, whose humour and vivid imagery have won him national plaudits, and local luminaries James Guppy, Emma Walker, Robyn Sweaney, Zom Osborne and Gatya Kelly are just some of the accomplished artists whose work you’ll be able to see in the inaugural Art Piece Gallery 30X30 prize.

Opening with awards announced at 3pm on Saturday at Art Piece Gallery. 

Murphy’s Pot

Both Sam and Jacqui Sosnowski really hate the R word! Retirement is just not their thing. As a matter of fact, now in their 60s they are busier now than probably at any other stage in their lives. Their converted double garage in Murphys Lane in downtown Mullum is pumping out artwork and ceramics like they are going out of style. Sam is a well-know local artist with several successful exhibitions under his belt. His Impressions – Japan and Memories shows at Lone Goat established his talents as a stunning printmaker, while Jacqui has recently resumed her passion for clay and is producing functional tableware and jewellery after completing a Diploma in Ceramics at Lismore TAFE.

They are now having a combined studio sale this Saturday and Sunday where you can pick up an artistic bargain at studio prices just in time for xmas. They may have come to Mullum to retire – but certainly not to slow down! Slip down Murphys Lane this weekend!

Pop your Christmas comedy cherry!

What does it take to be a standup comedian? Sixteen local comedy students are finding out if they are made of funny stuff as they complete Mandy Nolan’s 6-week standup comedy course, run through Byron Adult Community Education. This marks the course’s 21st year with more than 1,500 people making the jump! The final term sees another diverse group of people come together to share their life experiences. This standup comedy course boasts a few horticulturalists, a skydiver, a teacher, a receptionist, a social worker, a tradie and even an internet famous musician; for the first time ever one of the No Frills Twins has opted to do something without her twin! She’s hysterical!

This amazing group bring their everyday lives to the stage as they pop their comedy cherry at the Virgin Sacrifice on Monday 4 December at the Byron Services Club. 8pm. $10/15

Tix at the club or book on 6619 0529.

Funny kids on show!

For years comedians have made jokes about how funny kids are. And sure, they are. They say some pretty hysterical stuff. But what do kids actually think about adults? About our hypocrisy? About our rules? About how we run the world?

Find out what the world looks like from a kid’s perspective when comedian and mother of five Mandy Nolan presents Funny Kids – a 2-hour standup comedy spectacular that features 20 kids, aged 8–12, all performing their first standup comedy routines.

These Funny Kids are the class clowns. They’re the nerds. They’re the quiet kids who never say boo. Just like adults, kids bring their unique diversity to the stage. Mandy Nolan has been teaching comedy over the last eight weeks.

‘It’s a wild ride into comedy chaos,’ says Nolan, ‘but it’s always worth it. Kids have this way of just seeing things for what they are. As an adult and as a comedian I am always trying to get back to that perspective.’

This is the first kids’ comedy course that Nolan has taught for five years. She does them rarely but every time is reminded of the magic of kids getting their first taste of power on the mic.

‘This isn’t theatre,’ says Nolan. ‘I don’t pick out a few stars and then a bunch of kids to sit in the background. Every kid is centre stage, every kid has an equal turn. No-one misses out!’

Funny Kids the standup comedy graduation is hosted by Mandy Nolan and is also a fundraiser for two causes hand picked by the kids.

‘I wanted the kids to see their hard work used for something good so we are donating proceeds of our show (after costs) to Camp Quality, the camp for kids with cancer, and to CAWI, the Animal Welfare group in Brunswick Heads,’ says Nolan.

This will be a riotously funny comedy show for the whole family.

Brunswick Picture House, Sunday 10 December at 3pm. Adults $15/12, kids $10 and family of 4 is $40.

Bookings are recommended ahead of time as this event will definitely sell out! Tickets on brunswickpicturehouse.com with enquiries to 6685 0280.

Your Life In Music

Music is often intimately woven into key moments in our lives: our tumultuous teens, our first love songs, our travel songs, our adventures. Sometimes music sustains a person through difficult times. Who hasn’t dropped to the carpet and had a deep sob to Carol King or Adele or that whining idiot that sings ‘you’re beautiful’. What music features in the soundtrack of your life? Join Cape Byron Playback Theatre actors for The Music In Your Life at the Drill Hall on Saturday at 7.30pm. Entry $10/15. Enquiries to 0408 369 001.

I think I’m turning Japanese

The inaugural Byron Japan Festival Sunday Nov 26.
The inaugural Byron Japan Festival Sunday Nov 26.

Turn Japanese for the weekend at the inaugural Japan Festival at the Main Beach Surf Club in Byron. The Byron Japanese Community Association’s mission is to be the bridge between Japan and Byron Bay and contribute to the rich international profile of Byron Bay and its diverse cultural communities. Enjoy tea ceremonies, dance, music, markets and stories. Sunday 9am–4pm. Free. 

Take Your Medicine

Ever wondered what the right story could do for you? Listen to a free talk on Story Medicine and how to make it by Horst Kornberger, author of The Power of Stories. Horst is an expert on stories and myths as well as being an engaging and inspiring speaker. Thursday 30 Nov 7–8pm at the Verandah Room, Byron Community Centre, 69 Jonson St, Byron.

Cheeky Cabaret for Artstate 

Artstate is a new four-year project by Regional Arts NSW to shine a light on excellence in regional arts practice and to explore the exciting possibilities for arts and cultural development across the state. Over the period they will be partnering with regional development arts organisations to bring a stimulating program of regional, national and international speakers to share their experiences and knowledge. They kick off 2017 in partnership with Arts Northern Rivers in Lismore. From 30 November till 3 December there will be an exciting two-day program of speakers exploring the themes of creative practice and creative partnerships. Wrapping around this will be a multi-genre arts program featuring the amazing creatives from the north coast of NSW. Integral to Artstate will be a strong focus on Aboriginal arts and arts leaders as well as the recognition of the contribution of local government to arts and cultural development in regional NSW. Each year we will move to a different regional location, building on the discussions in a new landscape and uncovering the artistic secrets of each region. One of the shows making its way from the coastal town of Brunswick Heads (and world stages) is Cheeky Cabaret, performing for the first time in Lismore. Bold and brash, sexy and dangerous, with tongue placed firmly in cheek, this is one party you will not want to miss! Smashing together circus, vaudeville, comedy and everything in between, Cheeky Cabaret has rightfully become the talk of the town. After twenty years of causing trouble around the world and working with the best, it’s now time for the crème de la crème of these troubadours, miscreants and cabaret queens to storm the cultural capital of the northern rivers. Star Court Theatre in Lismore, 1 and 2 December at 9pm. $25/30


Mookx’s Celebration of Life and Songs

Mookx as a young man.
Mookx as a young man.

Local living legend Brendan ‘Mookx’ Hanley has invited special guests to perform his songs at a living wake at the Brunswick Picture House on Sunday from 2pm till 5pm. The community is invited to come and celebrate the life and era of a pioneer in music, comedy, activism and film while he is still breathing the air with us.

Mookx has worked with Pete Seeger, John Farnham, Bev Harrell, Slim Dusty, Lucky Starr, Dinah Lee, Jimmy Hannan, Johnny O’Keefe, John Williamson, Bee Gees, Manfred Mann, Graeme Bond, Hans Poulsen, Jack Thompson, Jean Paul Bell and many others.

Glover and Sorrensen at the Big Gig

Alan Glover has been cracking ’em up throughout Australia, from Cairns to Perth, Darwin to Melbourne and countless clubs and pubs in between since 1983. With almost 35 years’ experience delivering gags at gigs he’s grown standup comedy routines that are at times personal, at others ridiculous, but always engaging and funny. His subject matter can range from the forests of Australia to the jungle of Canberra and into the rocking chair on his expansive veranda in the Hunter Valley of New South Wales.

Internationally, Alan’s honest Australian-ness has given foreign audiences a very funny and educational experience. He’s performed many times in Singapore, Canada, the USA, Ireland, the Netherlands and New Zealand, and at the beginning of this century he spent a year in London, the busy comedy hub of the UK. These days Alan is a regular on the folk festival circuit where he performs with his comedy buddy S Sorrensen – the two creating a kind of hippy version of the two old blokes in the stalls in the muppet show.

He’s smack bang in comedian, poet and writer S Sorrensen’s backyard so it seemed only fitting that S should join his mate Alan as support at the Big Gig.

MCed by Mandy Nolan, don’t miss the last free Big Gig at the Ballina RSL for the year. Thursday 30 November at the Ballina RSL. 8pm. Free.


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