Items filtered by date: June 2013
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 15:00

Australian Burlesque Festival: In Preview

Gear up for a show you'll never forget. The Australian Burlesque Festival is heading back out on the road, and this year it's bigger and brighter than ever before.

“It really is the best of the best," says burlesque performer The Diamond Dahlia. “A lot of amazing international performers that we don't really get out here for any other events. The audience gets to see some of the best performances of the world up on stage and we have some really cool venues across Australia. It's a burlesque lover's dream.”

The striptease star says Australia's burlesque scene has put itself on the world map.

"Because we came to the scene a lot later in the rebirth of burlesque in the '90s, we've established a mix and mash of everything that's going on in the world. I think we're only beginning to be noticed as a good scene. We've had quite a few international performers come down the last couple of years and 2012 Queen of Burlesque was an Australian performer named Imogen Kelly. I think everyone is realising what Australia has to offer and what we've been hiding down here underneath the world." She describes the art form as a way of expressing who you are in a sassy, in-your-face way. "It's taking the best elements of yourself and chucking it on stage and not being afraid to be bold out. It's all about confidence. Obviously you're not going to get up on stage if you're not comfortable with your body. It's about having a gimmick and having something to offer."

The Diamond Dahlia discovered burlesque at the age of 18 and said it was the glitz and glamour that appealed the most to her. "It turned into this thing that I'm happy to spend thousands of dollars on creating a masterpiece that I can take to an audience. I get to go on stage dressed as a princess or an absolute goddess or whatever you can dream up in your head. We get to travel around and I've seen the world and I've performed with some amazing people. Seeing the world and doing what I love — who could ask for more?"

See The Diamond Dahlia as part of The Australian Burlesque Festival on Friday June 14 at The Tivoli.

Published in Cabaret
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:53

Slava's Snowshow: Clowning In Preview

Since its creation by renowned Russian clown Slava Polunin in 1993, 'Slava's Snowshow'  has played to millions of people in more than 30 countries and 120 cities including New York, London, Los Angeles, Paris, Rome, Hong Kong, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro and Moscow.

It is to clowning what Cirque du Soleil is to circus and the show brilliantly creates a world of wonderment and fantasy that transports the audience to a joyous dream-like place, where a bed becomes a boat in a storm-tossed sea; a woman is wrapped in cellophane and becomes flowers in a vase; a child walks in amazement inside a bubbles. Derek Scott is an instrumental part of the team of performers and first came to Australia for Expo 88 and then stayed.

Describe the show in 5 words?
Dreamlike, child, alive, journey, potato.

Describe your part in this production?

Most harrowing onstage moment?
When I was asked to play the lead role for the first time without ever rehearsing the show.

When did you realise that a career in the arts was your calling?
When I failed at math, but made my class laugh when the teacher left the room.

How enjoyable has it been to be involved with this production?

Inspirations — who/ what influences you the most?
Life. Slava. Mom. Potatoes.

What do you want audiences to say as they leave?
Wow, wow, wow! Do you remember where we parked?

What kind of training do you need to have to be able to be part of this?
Life and potatoes.

Anything else readers should know?
This show has the ability to transform, to make you lighter.

Why should people escape their home caves to come see this performance?
Because if they don't, they have to put up with their friends who DID go see it saying to them for years, ‘Oh, you should have seen this show, it was magical, you really missed something special’.

'Slava’s Snowshow' plays at the Lyric Theatre, QPAC from June 26-30.

Published in Theatre
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:48

Marco Polo: the Beat Goes On

In the unforgiving world of music, especially hip hop, hard work and chance are two of the most important factors. Very few artists get anything close to a free ride with most plugging away at their craft for years without catching a lucky break.

Canadian producer Marco Polo was never one to rest on his laurels. Coming from Toronto, making it in hip hop was never going to be easy, and as he explains down the line from NYC the experience was quite daunting.

“It was very, very intimidating. I was scared shitless to leave pretty much everything behind, but there was a lot of excitement too, because I wanted to do this music thing so bad. Everyone that I wanted to work with was in New York and the only way for me to get heard was to make the leap, so it was a mixture of fear and excitement.”

And while the plaudits didn’t come straight away, it didn’t take long for his music to find its way into the hands of the right people. “I met Masta Ace in a studio in New York where I used to work. He came in with The Beatnuts and at the end of the session I gave him a beat CD and like two or three weeks later he called me to use a couple of beats, and one of the tracks ended up on Ace’s ‘A Long Hot Summer’.”

Getting that break opened up all sorts of opportunities for Marco, like being able to release his solo album ‘Port Authority’, and its upcoming sequel ‘Port Authority 2’. It was obviously more than just your average collaboration, with a working relationship now stretching almost ten years that will find the two on our shores soon.

“The live show is awesome,” he gushes. “Masta Ace is one of the best live performers you will ever see in hip hop. His show is calculated from the very first moment he steps on stage to the very last lyric he spits. We have everything formulated without any of the bullshit. We have a vibe and we’re organised, making things flow smooth. We involve the crowd, and have a lot of fun. It’s a proper hip hop show and a real blessing for me to be involved with.”

Marco Polo plays the Transcontinental Hotel with Masta Ace June 15.

Published in Urban
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:43

The Tongue: Living The Dream

One of the most outspoken performers in Aussie hip hop, The Tongue has set himself apart from the crowd once again with his video for ‘Australian Dreaming’, in which he plays a police officer, a struggling single mum, a sex worker, a drug dealer, and a window washer. As you do.

You pull off the feminine look in ‘Australian Dreaming’. Did you come up with that concept?

"Because the concept of the song is, ‘how do we improve Australia?’, I wanted to look at all the people who've missed out on the Australian dream and been marginalised in society. So we came up with the window washer at the lights, the prostitute or the teacher trying to do his best and getting fruit thrown in his face. I like messing with the people who take hip hop super duper seriously. I take my music seriously, but I like messing with those people who only want it to be a certain thing and don't have a sense of humour and think that it's all about being tough. I like reinventing my shit each time around."

Your approach to hip hop has always been fairly lighthearted, but you get your point across when you need to. I find 'Surrender To Victory' to be quite a motivational album...

"What I realised somewhere along the line was that doing songs about political or social issues and pointing out how bad things are is important, because you need to become aware of stuff like that, but that's not necessarily inspirational. Take Rage Against The Machine, for instance. They can get you angry, but they don't really tell you what the solution is. I feel like there's not much hip hop, either here or overseas, that's uplifting people at the moment. The first step to overcoming anything is your attitude and your energy. If you're upset or depressed, you're going to be no use or help."

The Tongue plays The Tempo Hotel on Friday June 28 with Verbill, Fundamental Elements, Chelsea Jane and more.

Published in Urban
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:27

Live Review: Earlwolf


earlwolf1Music and controversy. Years ago they seemed to go together so well with visiting artists such as Marilyn Manson, Ice-T and Eminem making headlines for violent and misogynist lyrics and other untold sorcery that was poisoning the minds of our youth.

Well, it’s been a long time since we have had to worry about such invasions. However, we are lucky that the moral right brought to our attention the evils of Odd Future’s Tyler, the Creator and Earl Sweatshirt, otherwise known as Earlwolf. Arriving suitably late, Eatons Hill Hotel was alive and packed to the rafters.

Tyler and Earl were running the show like clockwork with the crowd hanging on every word, as they worshiped their two heroes. Odd Future classics like ‘Sandwiches’ and ‘Yonkers’ were gobbled alive by the raucous audience. With Tyler having just dropped ‘Goblin’, and Earl getting ready to drop ‘Doris’, new material came thick and fast with the punters never getting a chance to catch their collective breath. Tyler and Earl — as well as their hype man Taco — proved to be a refreshing distraction to the bland and politically correct music that currently rules the airwaves and stages.


Photos: Delong Lin

Published in Urban
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:00

Live Review: Outlook

Outlook, Croatia's annual hip hop, drum & bass and dubstep-centric festival which is known for its ridiculously massive line-up, extended its reach around the globe this year, with the Brisbane bass massive treated to two of the event’s big names.

KPStripped back, soulful, minimal vibes was the name of the game and thanks to an array of extra subs and the Monkwhy man himself The Hi-Fi was looking and sounding the best I have ever seen it.

With KP on mic duties, Monkeybar and Tweak rolled out their signature sounds, but a last minute change saw us enjoying Dusty Fungus for the next hour. 1am rolled around and Youngsta took to the stage to show why he’s one of the best in the business. A true dubstep purist in every sense of the word, Youngsta played one of the deepest sets I have heard in years; it was truly refreshing to hear dubstep back in its original form.

Finally, the time had come for the man himself, and although his set was far heavier than I was expecting Sabre was incredible nonetheless, coming straight out of the gates with his driving yet minimal sounds — but it wasn't long before he was in full flight with some seriously heavy rollers.

With the night starting to come to an end it was no surprise that Sabre was to drop ‘Oblique’, arguably one of the best releases of 2012 and the definition of electronic soul. A brilliant effort once again by Shucka Tours and the Earth Freq crew. I hope to see more collaborations from these two promotion powerhouses in the future as they sure as hell know how to throw a party. 


Photos: Stephen Sloggett

Published in Electronic
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 13:52

MKO: Top Five Childhood TV/ Film Crushes

1. Savion Glover in ‘Sesame Street’. Tap sensation Savion Glover played this bright-eyed, tap-happy, all-singing, all-dancing nice guy on ‘Sesame Street’, and was the highlight of my weekday afternoons.

2. ’Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’.
At the tender age of five, I would lie in bed and pull the covers over my head, then wish really hard that I when I pulled them back, the ninja turtles would be standing in my room. Not entirely sure what I expected would happen if it ever worked…

3. The mud-wrestling chicks in ‘Big Top Pee Wee’.
There's this montage in the movie ‘Big Top Pee Wee’ where he and his love interest kiss; shots of fireworks, volcanoes bubbling over, rockets taking off, etc. One clip is about two seconds worth of two women mud-wrestling. I used to watch it, rewind it, pause it, watch it again, repeat the cycle. I was six.

4. Gumby.
Seriously, how could any woman resist a green guy made out of clay. What a cutie.

5. Rick Moranis in ‘Honey I Shrunk The Kids’.
As the wacky scientist Dad who ends up shrinking and losing his kids in the backyard, he was so hopeless, so helpless, so pathetic, yet so intelligent. I just wanted to give him a big hug.

MKO headlines The New Wednesday Night of Wonkiness, Nasty Cuts, at Kerbside June 12 & 19. Support your locals.

Published in Pop/ Electro
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 13:44

Wayne Wakefield: In The Hotseat

Darwin can expect the smell of burnt rubber when the V8 Ute Series arrives this weekend, and Electric Playground owner Wayne Wakefield will be happy to provide it.

Hidden Valley racecourse beckons the return of the Brisbane driver, who’s showing more passion for victory than ever before, after a bumpy performance coming out the recent Perth round.

“I’m looking forward to Darwin, it's a track I know well. That always helps ’cause you can have four cars in the same tenth of a second in qualifying, so you can lose like ten bridge positions in two-tenths of a second. And knowing a track is definitely an advantage when you're trying to find those last two-tenths.”

Wakefield was run off the track by competitor Kim Jane during the Perth meet, but the driver affectionately known as Wahoo says the incident occurred because of the similarity of both vehicles.

“It's just one of those things that happens when the cars are so evenly matched in performance, I mean they're totally identical running the same tyres and same suspension.”

After making a name for himself years ago with the V8 Supercars category, the club mogul decided to return to motorsport and ute racing to prove his ability behind the wheel was not lost.

“Switching to utes was probably the most economical thing that gets good television exposure, they get two live races televised at each meeting and then there's a one hour edited show the following week. It's only a fraction of the cost of V8 Supercars too.”

With Electric Playground having consumed his life for the last few years, Wayne’s confident he will be able to resume his role as one of the sport’s fiercest competitors.

“I've got unfinished business in the sport from when I had to step away from it to focus on the clubs, and now that they're pretty much functioning on their own it's given me enough headspace to go back and hopefully finish the job I was doing before I left. But none of this would be possible without the huge support of my sponsors: Versus Wheels, Bacardi Oakheart, Wiseman Lawyers, Bank of Queensland and Shot Energy.”

Highlights of Round 3 OF the V8 Ute Racing Series screen on Channel 7 June 22 at 1.30pm.

Published in Electronic
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 12:49

Tigertown: Hypnotising Brisbane

Sydney five-piece band Tigertown will return to Brisbane later this month with a new single (‘What You Came Here For’) and the promise of a new sound.

“Folk was an overused word for a while, like, every band was folk something,” Tigertown's frontman Chris Collins declares. “This EP, it's definitely more of a band sound because we all recorded together for the first time — because our earlier recordings were just bedroom recordings kind of thing. This one, we were together in a house and it was bit more of an old fashioned style record where we all played.”

A couple of pop icons played an important role in shaping the group’s recent progression.

“When we went into this recording we were listening to a lot of Fleetwood Mac and we really like the way they they write pop songs, and that might have come out a bit in the songs and the way we recorded it. We really love a classic pop song like the ones that have stayed around forever so they're the kind of things that were going in when we were recording.

“Charlie and I both love creating imagery and telling stories with music. One of my big influences is Michael Jackson, the way he was able to create like a whole other world with every song, I love that. A lot of our songs have characters and made up stories to them to create a bit of a fantasy world, and other than that we do like to try to write some positive songs because there is so much darkness in the music scene.”

After this current tour, the band is hoping to cross off one of their bucket list items — a trip to India.

“We really hope so, Charlie and Kurt are both Indian and they both have family over there so we've got the accommodation part of the trip sorted out, we just need a gig. We'd love to get over there, it's such an amazing place, so many colours and it would be awesome.

Tigertown play Black Bear Lodge June 20, Sol Bar, Maroochydore, June 21 and Spotted Cow, T’mba, June 22.

Published in Rock
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 12:42

Little Bigsound: Creating Success

The labyrinth of the creative industry will be mapped out for young, aspiring artists when one-day music conference Little Bigsound returns for a third successive year next month.

“I think it is quite hard to get into the industry,” Project Manager Fionn Richards says. “And that is why coming along to Little Bigsound will be really great. [The speakers have] a lot of experience in the industries they've participated in, so they have a lot of knowledge to pass on to the younger people about how to get into the industry and once they're in, how to thrive.”

One of the important elements of Little Bigsound is the tradition of sharing knowledge.

“It's an integral part of our society,” Fionn says, “and Youth Music Industries works at a very base level with young people as they are going to be the next people passing their knowledge on to the next generation.”

Little Bigsound also provides an opportunity for young people to organise and run the event, with Fionn joining six other students from the Queensland Academy of Creative Industries for this year’s conference.

“[We’re] working closely with the industry professionals from QMusic. And we've been looking for speakers, and once found, asking for permission for them to speak and availability and things like that. We've also been looking at the nitty gritty, [plus] things like food.”

As a participant himself last year, Fionn highlights a few of the developments that have been put into place for 2013.

“Last year Little Bigsound was focused on the musicians, but this year we've got three main streams. So we've got the musicians, management, and media, and we split our sessions into these three streams.”

However, Little Bigsound is not only about listening to a panel of experts.

“After the great information that they receive, [the participants] can loosen up with a gig afterwards. So far we've booked Weathered and Wafia to play an acoustic set in between sessions and during lunch.”

Little Bigsound will be held at The Edge, South Bank, Friday July 12.

Published in Rock


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