The Greatest Love Of All – The Whitney Houston Show – Giveaway!

PHOTO Whitney Blue Dress Hand Up Email

The Greatest Love Of All – The Whitney Houston Show celebrates the iconic pop singer Whitney Houston and her most loved songs. The show is coming to Melbourne in May 2015 with the breathtaking voice of South African singer Belinda Davids after selling out in Dubai, New Zealand, Canada, the US and South Africa.

PHOTO Whitney Belinda Singing Email

The 2 ½ hour concert and stage show spans Houston’s 29 year career and includes hits How Will I Know, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, Where Do Broken Hearts Go, Didn’t We Almost Have It All, I’m Every Woman, Exhale (Shoop Shoop), Step by Step and I Will Always Love You.

Watch this preview clip to hear the amazing Belinda Davids – she has a 4 octave range!

The Greatest Love Of All – The Whitney Houston Show, Athenaeum Theatre, 188 Collins St, Melbourne

Friday 15 May to Saturday 23 May 2015

Tickets from $49.90 from Ticketek 132 849

Giveaway! Thanks to The Greatest Love Of All – The Whitney Houston Show I have 2 x double passes to give away for the opening night Friday 15 May.

To win just follow the instructions below. The competition closes midnight Monday 20 April and the two random winners will be contacted by email. Good luck!

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THRILLER LIVE is a spectacular concert production that celebrates the music of Michael Jackson and the Jackson Five. The 2 hour show features non-stop hits, high-energy choreography and dancing and Michael’s innovative dance moves, video footage, a myriad of effects and dazzling costumes.


THRILLER LIVE has played in London’s West End for six capacity years since 2009 and it premieres in Australia in Perth on 10 December, then tours nationally to Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.  Two of the stars on this tour will be Australian’s MiG Ayesa and Prinnie Stevens who have just performed the roles in the West End, London.


THRILLER LIVE  is a homage of Michael Jackson’s 45 year musical history and contains all of Jackson’s favourite songs. Don’t miss it!

THRILLER LIVE, Arts Centre Melbourne, State Theatre

Wednesday 28 January to Sunday 8 February, 2015

Tuesday 7pm, Wednesday – Friday 8pm, Saturday 4pm & 8pm, Sunday 1pm and 6pm

Tickets from $69.90. (Booking and transaction fees may apply.)

Bookings: ARTS CENTRE MELBOURNE 1300 182 183 or

Groups 10+ SAVE! Call Group Bookings 1300 002 787

Giveaway! Thanks to THRILLER LIVE I have 2 x double passes to give away for the opening night Wednesday 28 January. To win all you have to do is follow the instructions below. Two winners will be randomly selected and notified via email and tickets posted out. Competition closes midnight Monday 8 December. Good luck!

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Arts Centre Winter Season + Einstein on the Beach Giveaway!

Winter in Melbourne is a great excuse to hide indoors and get cultured – and today one of my favourite Melbourne arts venues, Arts Centre Melbourne, launches its Winter season of dance, opera, puppetry and more.

Some of the highlights of the Winter season include Penny Plain, a beautifully dark apocalyptic puppetry comedy; Einstein on the Beachan epic and ground-breaking opera/contemporary dance fusion; Proximity, a contemporary dance performance captured and artistically manipulated through videography; and  Botanica a beautifully mesmerising family-friendly performance featuring spectacular costumes, inspiring dance and theatre.

Arts Centre Melbourne Winter season

Giveaway! Thanks to Arts Centre Melbourne I have 2 x A reserve tickets to opening night of Einstein on the Beach (valued at $278) for Wednesday 31 July 6:30pm. Einstein on the Beach is returning to Melbourne for the first time in 21 years for an exclusive season from 31 July to 4 August at Arts Centre Melbourne as part of a major international tour. Note that it runs for four-and-a-half hours without an interval but the audience is able to leave and re-enter the auditorium as they wish. To win the tickets all you have to do is leave a comment and a winner will be randomly drawn on Friday 12 July. Good luck!
And the winner is #4 Kate – an email has been sent to you!
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HOT: Snarky Puppy, The Forum, Flinders St, Melbourne


If this wild, wet and windy weather is making you feel a bit sleepy and wanting to get tucked under the covers, go hit some gigs at the Melbourne International Jazz Festival (31 May to 9 June) for a jolt of energising, inspirational and blow-your-socks-off instrumental ensembles and vocalists.

One of the highlight gigs for me on the weekend was Dallas/Brooklyn jazz and funk fusion instrumental outfit Snarky Puppy making their Australian debut in the weird Roman-get up of the Forum (and one of my favourite live music venues in Melbourne). For a band that is a bit of an underground cult secret I was surprised to see the line to get in snaked all the way up Hosier Lane. And I felt I was definitely not cool enough for the mostly youthful audience – not your stereotypical jazz geeks in berets.

The band consists of seven members (and with up to 30 musicians collectively rotating) who play guitar, keyboards, saxophone, brass, percussion and drums. Each musician got to show off their skill in extended improvisations and the interplay between the percussion and drummer was a particularly dynamic partnership. If I was sleepy before the show, I certainly wasn’t now! The show was a wall of sound and danceable beats and the mosh pit was a grooving hive of moving bodies from start to finish. You simply couldn’t resist the band’s infectious enthusiasm for the music and those relentless funk beats.

Due to popular demand Snarky Puppy are playing a second show at Melbourne’s premiere jazz club Bennett’s Lane on Tuesday 4 June. Given that Bennett’s Lane is a very intimate venue I imagine the band will be raising the roof in riotous melody tomorrow night. Even if you’re not a jazz fan (or a novice like me), don’t miss it! [Second show now sold out! There’s a third late night 10pm show happening on Tuesday 4 June – snap up your tickets and experience these guys before it’s too late! Click here to book]

PS In a nice coincidence blog favourite Laneway Learning is hosting an ‘Introduction to Jazz‘ class at Shebeen Bar on Monday 1 July. The class only costs $12 and will cover the history and evolution of jazz for absolute novices. If you’ve ever wondered what all the fuss is about, this is the class for you!

Melbourne International Jazz Festival Giveaway


The 15th program of annual the Melbourne International Jazz Festival is kicking off this winter from Friday 31 May to Friday 9 June. There’s something for everyone, from gigs for first-time visitors to MIJF to concerts to jazz aficionados to family-friendly free concerts.

Giveaway! Thanks to Melbourne International Jazz Festival I have 2 x Premium tickets to each of the following shows:


  • Opening Night Gala: Everybody Wants to Rule the World on Friday 31 May 8pm at Palais Theatre – vocalist/pianist Sarah McKenzie, jazz vocalist and improviser, Michelle Nicolle, and special guest Mahalia Barnes reinterpreting iconic rock songs and pop anthems in an Australian premiere and festival exclusive event; and
  • Chucho Valdés & the Afro-Cuban Messengers (CUBA) on Saturday 8 June 8pm at Hamer Hall – renowned Cuban pianist, composer and bandleader Chucho Valdés and his band the the Afro-Cuban Messengers are bringing their irresistibly exuberant music to the newly-refurbished Hamer Hall.


To win just leave a comment saying whether you’d like tickets to GALA or CHUCHO and the winners will be drawn randomly on Friday 24 May. Good luck!

The winners are #5 Shaun and #46 Kellie and an email has been sent.

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Kate Ceberano at the Spiegeltent, Arts Centre Melbourne – Giveaway!


Every summer a beautiful mirrored hall is constructed in the Arts Centre forecourt to host local and international performers in its intimate, historic space.

This year’s program of events looks really exciting and Spiegeltent’s Melbourne 2013 season is running from now until April 21. The full program can be found here and highlight performances gracing the stage this year include ethereal vocalist  Katie Noonan in Love Song Circus,  Macaron Luau – a cooking class AND ukelele concert(!), circus acrobats Casus: Knee Deep and Australian music veteran Kate Ceberano, who is releasing a new album this year.




Giveaway! Thanks to Arts Centre Melbourne I have 1 x double pass to Kate Ceberano for Friday March 22 at 9pm plus 1 x double to a late night performance at Club Spiegel with VIP access to the Balcony Bar. To win the tickets and passes all you have to do is leave a comment below and the winner will be drawn on Monday 18 March. Good luck!

The winner is #8 Susan so check your inbox!

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Summer Season at Arts Centre Melbourne – Giveaway!

Hello summer!

Arts Centre Melbourne has a fantastic season of events lined up for the summer and I have 2 x double passes to give away for one of their highlight performances.

Blaze, an amazing street dance concert which premiered in London’s West End featuring 12 of the best streetdancers and breakers in the world, against a digital backdrop designed by Es Devlin, designer for Kanye West, Mika, Take That, Pet Shop Boys and Lady Gaga. On BLAZE performance days, the public spaces in and around Hamer Hall will also have free music, dance and street art performances as part of the Bring It! program. The 2 x double passes are for the performance on Wednesday 23 January 8pm.

To win all you have to do is leave a comment below. The two winners will be randomly selected and announced on Monday 14 January. Good luck!

PS if you’re a parent and want to go into the draw for cultural school holiday events then hop onto my family/parenting blog TOT: HOT OR NOT for a series of giveaways in the the next week.

The winners are Angelique and Ashley – an email has been sent to you both!

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Opera in the Vineyards at Domaine Chandon Giveaway!

I don’t know about you but I feel like this winter has really draagggged on. So yay for warmer weather and the beginning of Spring and the coming months of outdoor fun and entertainment!

The season starts with the stunning Yarra Valley winery Domaine Chandon hosting the Good Weekend Opera in the Vineyards on Friday 5 October and Saturday 6 October. This year’s season celebrates Giacomo Puccini and what better way to experience his passionate and romantic music than in the atmospheric Riddling Hall of Domaine Chandon, lined with lined with 40,000 bottles of aging sparkling wines – think of the acoustics with all that glass!

Date: Friday 5 October and Saturday 6 October 2012

Time: Pre-concert drinks from 6:30pm; concert starts at 8pm

Where: Riddling Hall at Domaine Chandon, 727 Maroondah Highway, Coldstream VIC


Giveaway! Thanks to Good Weekend Opera in the Vineyards I have 1 x A reserve double pass to the Puccini gala valued at $300 for Friday 5 October. To win all you have to do is leave a comment below and the winner will be drawn on Friday 21 September. Good luck!

And the winner is Robynne. I’ll be in touch soon!


HOT: Hamer Hall reopening + Giveaway!


Hamer Hall at the Arts Centre Melbourne could arguably be called the heartbeat of Melbourne’s arts scene so it was exciting to see the New Hamer Hall recently unveiled after more than two years of work. The concert venue now has new, improved acoustics, refurbished auditorium and foyers plus some new restaurants which I’m excited to try out (good pre-theatre dining being a bit of a Holy Grail for me).

To celebrations around Hamer Hall reopening haven’t been limited to a weekend – it’s a festival with lots of great local and international acts coming to grace the stage all the way to October.

Giveaway! Thanks to the Arts Centre Melbourne I have some tickets to some concerts which are part of the New Hamer Hall Opening Season

2 x A reserve double passes to see the Cape Town Opera Gala perform operatic scenes and highlights on Friday 7 September 8pm.

1 x A reserve double pass to see Grammy award winning Macy Gray in concert perform songs from her new album and her greatest hits on Friday 21 September 8pm.

To win all you have to do is leave a comment below telling me whether you want to go to the OPERA or too MACY. The winners will be randomly selected and announced on Monday 3 September. Good luck!

The winners have been drawn! #6 Justin (opera), #80 Effie (Macy) and #82 Ross (opera).


HOT Chat: Georgia Beattie from Lupe

Melbourne Music Week starts today until 26 November – a fun-filled week of music (natch), films, workshops, parties, eating and drinking.

One of my discoveries for Melbourne Music Week is actually not directly about music. If you visit any of the bars at Melbourne Music Week you’ll find Lupe, an innnovative single serve filled wine glass that’s perfect for festivals and events. Today’s HOT Chat is with Georgia Beattie, the founder of Lupe (you’ll have to excuse the lack of accent on the ‘e’ of Lupe, can’t work it out on my keyboard!). Thanks Georgia!

Georgia, tell me a bit more about your background and the story behind Lupe?

I’ve grown up amongst all things wine. My father started making wine when I was young and of course he had us out in the vineyard picking grapes and getting amongst the very hands on process of making wine. I have worked with my father at his company Swords Select for the last 5 or so years which gave me a feel for the wine industry and running a business.

What inspired you to develop Lupe?

I was at a festival in Melbourne and I asked the bar staff whether I could have a glass of wine instead of the typical lolly water or beer that they usually serve.

It turned out that the packaging was the major limitation. Spirits and beer seem to have managed to create a user friendly package, I pondered why hadn’t wine?

So given my wine background and entrepreneurial drive I started prototyping my own single serve glass of wine. I came across some fairly major hurdles in the PET glass creation just about the same time I learnt of James Nash in the UK who had been working on a ready to drink wine product for the last 5 years.

I jumped on a plane with all that was remaining in my bank account shortly after finishing university and now I have the rights to Mr Nash’s product in Australia, New Zealand and Asia. Having Mr Nash’s product opposed to my own creation gave me a much faster route to market as well as the confidence with a proven and tested product that was successfully selling in the UK and Europe.

What’s a typical work day for you and what advice would you give to someone starting their own business?

I usually go for a jog around the tan at 5.30 / 6am to prepare myself for the day (healthy body healthy mind). I have a coffee on my way to work (location depending on my mood – I don’t have a regular I’ll rotate between St Edmonds, Auction Rooms, Dukes Coffee, Cumulus Inc). Over a coffee I plan my day and to do list.

If I could predict the rest of my day it would make my life a lot easier, unfortunately I roll with the punches and try to cross as much as I can off my to do list.

What are your next plans for Lupe?

Lupe is essentially a packaging company so I’d like to walk down the liquor isle within 5 years and see all my favorite branded wines with a single serve version along side the 750ml bottle. We’re creating an entirely new market segment with the single serve that is complementary to the 750ml bottle. It’s going be extremely challenging but exciting at the same time. We’re currently in discussions with 2 large wine companies about packaging a single serve.

We recently launched in Japan and we’ll slowly roll out into Korea and Hong Kong next year.

Finally, what HOT places and things do you love about Melbourne?

Kubik opens this Friday down at Birrarung Marr near Federation Square. This is definitely HOT and will be until the 28th Nov. Line ups and info available here.

A long breakfast reading the newspaper on the weekend at Speakeasy Kitchen Bar (359 Chapel St, South Yarra +61 3 9824 0770), Lawsons Grove Shop (1 Lawson Grove South Yarra  +61 3 9866 3640) or St Edmonds (154 Greville Street  Prahran +61 3 9525 0473).

The Smith (213 High St, Prahran) for dinner and a drink.

Unoriginal late night drinks at Siglo or Supper Club (161 Spring St, Melbourne +61 3 9654 6300).