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News: Ben Lee launches new album

Ben  Lee began this album as part of a larger project several years ago, aiming to make interfaith music about all five major religions, for kids and families. The goal was to point out the commonalities between religions and to demonstrate the universal principles of love and the search for truth in each tradition. He wanted to cover all major religions but in the current political climate there suddenly became a sense of urgency when President Trump announcing travel bans there became a sudden need to help give a voice to the Global community that are affected by these bans.

Ben felt that it was the right time to speak up, as a non-Muslim, in his solidarity with innocent Muslim people around the world. The time was right to release this album. As a member of the Global community Ben takes his responsibility as a member of the human race seriously and

Produced by Blake Collins, this album is a tribute to the mystical ideas found in the Koran and the various sacred Islamic stories, that can be found when one stops reading literally, and begins to hear the messages of the heart contained within. It is an album that aims to spread the word of love and give insights to a religion that many may not be aware of.  It is a fun album for kids and grown-ups alike that serves to remind the listener that human beings all over the world are the same – we want meaning, love and guidance from within. The album is a great reminder that religions

All proceeds from this album go to the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) www.aclu.org who are working tirelessly to protect the freedom of all types of people in America, and in fact were the initiators of the court case against the Trump administration that overturned the initial “travel ban” executive order.

Here is the link to the album in iTunes.  https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/ben-lee-sings-songs-about-islam-for-the-whole-family/id1208356490

And here is a video of Ben explaining the concept behind the record: https://youtu.be/0GFibKlM8Pg

 

 

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News: Comedy CHiPs drops trailer.

New buddy- cop movie CHiPs dropped its first trailer today and looks set to be a laugh a minuet  from writer and director Dax Shephard.
Dax Shepard  and Michael Peña star in Warner Bros. Pictures’ action comedy “CHiPs.” Shepard also directs from a script he penned based on the characters from the popular ‘70s television series created by Rick Rosner.

The original series, which ran between 1977 and 1983, focused on two police officers who patrolled the California highways on motorcycles and starred Larry Wilcox and Erik Estrada in the lead roles.

Jon Baker (Shepard) and Frank “Ponch” Poncherello (Peña) have just joined the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in Los Angeles but for very different reasons. Baker is a beaten up pro motorbiker trying to put his life and marriage back together. Poncherello is a cocky undercover Federal agent investigating a multi-million dollar heist that may be an inside job—inside the CHP.

The inexperienced rookie and hardened pro are teamed together, but clash more than click, so kickstarting a partnership is easier said than done. But with Baker’s bike skills combined with Ponch’s street savvy it might just work…if they don’t drive each other crazy along the way.

CHiPS releases in Australian cinemas on April 6, 2017.

Watch the NSFW  trailer below.

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News: RuPaul's Drag Race Announces Season 9 Air Date

It’s time to Sashay onto the catwalk hunties, as RuPaul just announced the Season 9 air date of popular reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race.

The popular show moves from Logo Tv to VH1 in order to accommodate for its growing audience. With an Emmy in the bag RuPaul can only get more fabulous, and season 9 looks set to delight fans.

This season promises to be bigger and better than ever with Lady Gaga already announced as a special guest ( gasp).

Watch the teaser trailer below.  The show airs on March 24.

Start your engines and may the best woman win!

 

 

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News: RuPaul’s Drag Race Announces Season 9 Air Date

It’s time to Sashay onto the catwalk hunties, as RuPaul just announced the Season 9 air date of popular reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race.

The popular show moves from Logo Tv to VH1 in order to accommodate for its growing audience. With an Emmy in the bag RuPaul can only get more fabulous, and season 9 looks set to delight fans.

This season promises to be bigger and better than ever with Lady Gaga already announced as a special guest ( gasp).

Watch the teaser trailer below.  The show airs on March 24.

Start your engines and may the best woman win!

 

 

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News: CARAVANA SUN ANNOUNCE NATIONAL TOUR

Following the release of their critically acclaimed third album Guerrilla Club and over 150 shows around the world in 2016 Caravãna Sun have returned this year, exposed and upfront, wearing their hearts on their sleeves with the release of “Whale Song”.

The hard working band have been touring the globe of late, playing their laid back surf style to audiences the tour is presented by Sea Shephard.

Proudly presented by Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, “The Whale Song Tour” kicks off at the Byron Bay Surfing Festival on February 24th and see’s the band hitting stages around Australia and New Zealand. The band will be donating $5 per merchandise item to Sea Shepherd during the tour, marking the beginning of an ongoing relationship between Caravãna Sun and the not-for-profit organisation. 

Tickets can be purchased from the bands website at:

http://www.caravanasun.com/

TOUR DATES

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News: KONG:SKULL ISLAND TRAILER RELEASE

In 2017, all hail the King.

This compelling, original adventure from director Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) tells the story of a diverse team of scientists, soldiers and adventurers uniting to explore a mythical uncharted island in the Pacific, as dangerous as it is beautiful. Cut off from everything they know, the team ventures into the domain of the mighty Kong, igniting the ultimate battle between man and nature. As their mission of discovery becomes one of survival, they must fight to escape a primal Eden in which humanity does not belong.

KONG: SKULL ISLAND is directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts and stars Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Brie Larson, John Goodman, John C. Reilly, Tian Jing, Corey Hawkins, Jason Mitchell, John Ortiz, Thomas Mann, Shea Whigham, Toby Kebbell, Eugene Cordero, Terry Notary. KONG: SKULL ISLAND releases in Australian cinemas on March 9, 2017.

Watch the preview below:

 

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News: GHOST IN THE SHELL TRAILER RELEASE

 

 

SHE IS OUR EVOLUTION.

They created her, but they cannot control her. Watch the brand new trailer for GHOST IN THE SHELL in cinemas March 30.

Based on the internationally-acclaimed sci-fi property, “GHOST IN THE SHELL” follows Major, a special ops, one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid, who leads the elite task force Section 9. Devoted to stopping the most dangerous criminals and extremists, Section 9 is faced with an enemy whose singular goal is to wipe out Hanka Robotic’s advancements in cyber technology.
Cast: Scarlett Johansson, Beat Takeshi Kitano, Juliette Binoche, Michael Pitt, Pilou Asbæk, Kaori Momoi, Chin Han, Danusia Samal, Lasarus Ratuere, Yutaka Izumihara,  Tuwanda Manyimo

Watch the trailer below

 

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[ Review] The Tragedy of Richard III

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If  the purpose of theatre is not only to entertain, but to make us think and begin conversations, then the latest play at La Boite does just that.

The tragedy of history is that it is all too often written by the victors in a biased light with essential facts quite often left out. Key characters slip beneath the immortal cracks of time to be either forgotten, romanticized or made into something they are not.

When his body was discovered in a car park in 2012, the myth that surrounded the man who was thought  by history to be a monster and villain was suddenly something that needed to be rethought. Was Richard really the mad King that Shakespeare portrays who murdered his rivals in order to seat himself upon the throne, or was he merely a man with too much ambition?

The Tragedy of Richard III aims  to ask those questions in this performance, bringing to light the boy, the woman Anne who loved him and the Bard that demonized him in history’s eyes. As the performance is orated by a number of cast members it examines the falsehoods that we have come to believe over the last 500 years since Richard was slain in battle, ending the War of the Roses.

With the performance we are asked as an audience to use our imaginations, to agree to disagree and most of all to think. Not following in any kind of chronological order the play flicks from idea to idea with rapid pace, the actors and audience almost mentally running to keep up. Props fly, swords cut the air and events that never happened are written in to flesh out a man who was more than just his deformity.

With exceptional performances from all of the cast as they switch between different roles, it’s when Todd McDonald wraps an Elizabethan collar around his neck and becomes Shakespeare that the immensity of these roles is realised. As rain pours down upon him, the Bard hashes out the plot of his famous play its here that McDonald shines, his performance truly memorable and inspiring.

The challenge of the performance is to bring to life Shakespeare and modernise it, make it tangible for audiences that are more used to reality TV whilst being engaging. It’s a big task to bite off, but it works. Performances are timed perfectly, fight scenes blocked and choreographed expertly and dialogue that makes you pay attention. This is not theatre for the viewer that wants to sit and be entertained, this is theatre for the thinker.

 

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[Review] Little Shop of Horrors

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Little Shop of Horrors
The Playhouse Theatre
QPAC Thursday June 2

First made popular in the early 80s the theatre heavy weight is back to introduce a whole new audience to the blood- thirsty plant that wreaks havoc on a small time Florist shop.

When we meet our loveable geek Seymour Krelborn he is a down-on-his- luck loser slaving away thankless at Mushnik’s Flower Shop down on Skid Row and secretly in love with his beautiful co- worker Audrey. When Mushnik threatens to close the business, Audrey convinces Seymour to show Mushnik the plant, an exotic specimen purchased from a Chinese store during a solar eclipse that he has dubbed Audrey Two.

At first Audrey Two is great for business, people flock from all over New York to witness the spectacle. But when Seymour makes the grisly discovery that Audrey Two needs human blood to survive he must make the difficult choice between fame, fortune and the survival of anyone willing to get in Audrey Two’s way. The sinister foul- mouthed singing carnivore will stop at nothing to take over the world and devour anything that gets in its way.

With the first act entirely monochromatic it is an interesting way to portray Seymour’s pre- Audrey life on Skid Row and an effacious stage design tool. Whilst the play is somewhat of a classic it brings a fresh feel to the production and highlights the pre- Audrey Two aspect of the story effectively. Post Audrey – Two is all about vivid colour and larger than life costuming. As Audrey grows into the larger than life demon plant the stage design and puppetering complimenting each other.

What is interesting to note is the minor sub-plot of the heroine Audrey’s abusive boyfriend. In a climate where domestic violence is at the forefront of the media it’s a little confronting to see acts of violence towards a woman on stage, and leaves the question hanging – is this still appropriate for audiences today? However when Audrey’s abusive boyfriend The Dentist gets what is coming to him there is a collective cheer through out and a sigh of relief.

With all of the cast giving amazing performances it is the hapless and unlucky in love Audrey that shines. Multiple-award winner Esther Hannaford, brings her to life with a quirky Brooklyn accent that is deliciously humorous. The audience can’t help but feel pathos for her as she dreams about a home and her own patch of green during the musical number ” Somewhere That’s Green”.

Little Shop of Horrors was first introduced to the stage in 1983 when it was adapted from a 1960s movie of the same name. It’s had many incantations, including the Rick Moranis movie and with its black humour and impressive doo-wop singers the production will continue to delight audiences for many more years to come.