Things to do in Melbourne in January
You may know Louis Theroux best in his scraggly, lanky form from his Weird Weekends series which kicked off in the late ’90s, or you might be more familiar with his recent investigations into subjects like scientology, sexual assault and current worrying trends in the US. But either way, you’ve probably been won-over by the Britsh documentary maker’s disarming journalistic style. Theroux has long been employing the technique of reaching marginalised, radical, unusual or aggressive interview subjects by being unabashedly honest and just gosh darn friendly (albeit with clear intentions to uncover an intriguing story). He investigates the taboo, often putting himself in awkward and dangerous situations. Remember his bit-part in a porno in 1998 or when he underwent liposuction in Under the Knife (2007)? If his last sell-out Australian tour is anything to go by, we can make an informed assumption that he’ll be as charismatic in person as he is on screen. Theroux will bring more than 25 years of journalistic practice to this massive 2020 Australian and New Zealand tour, stopping off at the Plenary in Melbourne for his last show of the tour on January 19. RocKwiz host Julia Zemiro will be chatting with Theroux about his epic career, so it could really go in any direction: we could be in for a discussion about neo-Nazis, aggressive religious fundamentalists, porn stars, people with autism or transgender kids. You can also expect Theroux to dish about his most famous encounters, be
His gift is his song, and this one's for you. Elton John is coming to Australia as part of his three-year (!) Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour, and he is performing at several wineries as part of A Day on the Green as well as a huge stadium show at Hanging (Crocodile) Rock. The tour is just as epic as you'd expect from Elton John, with more than 300 shows across five continents. You can expect all the hits you know and love from the seasoned performer, including 'Tiny Dancer', 'Sad Songs', 'I'm Still Standing' and maybe even 'Candle in the Wind'. As Saturday night's all right for performing, John's biggest shows in Victoria will be on Saturday, January 25 and Sunday, January 26 at Hanging Rock. Also on the Saturday theme, he's playing AAMI Park on February 22. He's also playing Mt Duneed Estate on December 7 and Rochword Wines on January 31 and February 1. Don't let the sun go down on 2020 without seeing one of pop music's living legends.
Brockhampton will be hitting the solo stage as the headliner at this poppy, hip-hoppy festival. We’re keen to see these very cool kids who’ve self-titled themselves as ‘the hardest working boyband in show business’ performer their alt R’n’B and hip-hop big-hitters like the bopping ‘Sweet’ and everything from their 2018 album iridescence (and hopefully more EPs that’ll trickle in like Ghettobaby). And with the group made up of no less than 14 multi-skilled members jumping in and out of the performance, writing, producing and designing Brockhampton’s sound, we’re sure it’ll be the freshest of fresh. But what we’re potentially even more excited about is the confirmation that the queen of flute-twerking, Lizzo, will be joining them. The ‘Truth Hurts’ singer has been grinding and grooving through the indie scene for almost a decade, but has recently risen to the throne of rap and pop with self-love advocating tacks like ‘Juice’ and ‘Good as Hell’ on her 2019 album, Cuz I Love You. She’s also teamed up with hip-hop greats like Missy Elliott and leading pop acts like Charlie XCX. The baddest bitch’s set at FOMO is sure to be an absolute winner. As always, you’ll be getting around the single stage at FOMO and vibing to the all-in party atmosphere that’s sure to be heightened by the vast, swooping Melbourne Showgrounds. You’ll be able to soak up all of the musical action without interruption, but since the Melbourne festival is locked in for mid-January, you’ll also be sweating up
What would you do if you found out your dad wrote a porno? Would you ignore its very existence? Would you bring it up with him? Or would you, say, create a podcast with two of your friends and read out chapters to the wider world? Let’s just say, Jamie Morton made the right decision. The My Dad Wrote A Porno podcast is like a filthy book club, where listeners get a section of the devilishly funny Belinda Blinked erotic novel dissected by the author’s incredulous son and his friends James Cooper and Alice Levine. Jamie’s 60-something father (who – no joke – penned the book under the moniker Rocky Flintstone) was sincere in his approach to later-in-life self-publication, but the resulting novel is a trainwreck of clumsy and weird descriptions of sexual situations, with a vague plotline about the goings-on in the super sexy world of pots and pans sales. Basically, it’s a disaster – but a disaster filled with spit-take worthy prose. Launching in 2015 with readings from Rocky Flintstone's literature, the series has been a runaway success, boasting 160 million downloads worldwide, massive live shows and even an HBO special. Jamie, Alice and James were last in Australia in 2017 with a sold-out tour, and are returning with a brand new show in early 2020. We're the first stop on their world tour, and we're pretty honoured to be the first to find out what's been happening in Belinda Blumenthal's world. They've announced just one Melbourne show so far, on January 15, but given th
Here’s a question: What can’t you find at the Camberwell Markets? This would have to undoubtedly be Melbourne’s biggest marketplace for pre-loved wares, with 370 stalls in total. From the most delicate string of vintage pearls to hardwood furniture, you and your home can get a reasonably cheap makeover from one Sunday morning's worth of rummaging. The layout of the markets does not divide stallholders by what they are selling, which encourages you to explore every nook and cranny of the outdoor marketplace. You may not think you need silver-sequinned glam rock boots, but just wait until you're trying them on, piping hot jam doughnut in the other hand.
One of the best ways to learn about Melbourne is on foot, with an experienced guide pointing out nooks and crannies you might otherwise miss and telling entertaining stories about Melbourne's colourful past. But walking and learning are thirsty work, no? Enter Drinking History Tours, which will take you on a tour down laneways, up alleys and through hidden parts of Melbourne or Fitzroy to teach you about the city's hidden gems and secret histories. And most importantly, the tours include stops at three fantastic Melbourne bars along the way. The Melbourne tour takes in Federation Square, the Forum, the MCG, AC/DC Lane, the Old Treasury Building, Chinatown and more. The tour stops at three bars en route, and there are snacks at the second bar and a full dinner at the third. You'll learn fascinating stories about Melbourne's seedy past, including tales of murder, brothels and a centuries-old unsolved mystery. The Fitzroy tour starts at St Patrick's Cathedral and includes the Royal Exhibition Building, the Spanish Club, Brunswick Street, Johnston Street and laneways in between. You'll learn about Fitzroy's seedier side, including the epic battle between Squizzy Taylor and his archrival, as well as fun facts about the suburb's art and music scene. It also stops at three bars along the way: an old Melbourne stalwart, a reinvented hipster hangout and one of Melbourne's best cocktail bars. Founder Ben Oliver has worked as a guide for years, including five years running Melb
Long before it was an Academy Award-winning film, Chicago was a hit Broadway musical. Penned by musical theatre's dynamic duo John Kander and Fred Ebb, the musical was only a minor splash when it premiered in 1975. But when it was given a stripped back and sexed up new production in 1996, it became an immediate sensation and eventually the longest running Broadway revival of all time. That's the production which Melbourne audiences will see, this time with Natalie Bassingthwaighte playing Roxie (the Renée Zellweger role) opposite musical theatre star Alinta Chidzey as Velma (the Catherine Zeta-Jones role). Jason Donovan is playing the smooth-talking lawyer Billy Flynn, while vocal powerhouse Casey Donovan is taking on Matron Mama Morton, the prison warden who sings 'When You're Good to Mama'. The show also includes 'Razzle Dazzle', 'Cell Block Tango', 'Mr Cellophane', and, of course, 'All That Jazz'.
Melbourne institution Bimbo (universally called Bimbo's) is celebrating LGBTQI pride each and every Sunday from 3pm. Queer Deluxe is an all-inclusive day to relax, eat, drink, boogie and celebrate queer culture. There are performers, drag queens, DJs and drink specials, including $20 Bloody Mary, Spritz and Margarita cocktail jugs. Bimbo reopened after a devastating fire in May 2019 and has re-cemented its place in Melbourne's north for good times and great eats. And yes, of course, the pizza is still just $4.
Venetian glass is known across the world for its vibrant colour, elaborate designs and exquisite craftsmanship, honed over centuries by traditional glassblowers on the Venetian island of Murano. In Liquid Light, the National Gallery of Victoria brings together their extensive collection of glass pieces to explore the development of the Venetian glass tradition, from the Golden Age of the 16th century to the postmodern creations of the Memphis Group. Highlights include a Games of Thrones-worthy 17th century goblet, complete with intertwining dragons coiling around the stem, and a contemporary patchwork vase by renowned Murano glass artist Fulvio Bianconi.
A trip to the Yarra Valley is always an excellent day out – for everyone except the poor schmuck who draws the short straw and can't partake because they're driving. So why not take a tour to the Yarra Valley, allowing everyone to enjoy the fruits of someone else's labours? Chillout Tours runs small tours of up to 11 people (or up to 25 for privately booked tours), and the bus picks up eager wine tasters in the centre of Melbourne, outside St Paul's Cathedral. The first stop is the world-famous Domaine Chandon winery, owned by Moët and Chandon and purveyors of some of Australia's favourite sparkling wine. The views are stunning at Domaine Chandon, with panoramic vistas over the vines and softly rolling hills, and best enjoyed with a glass of sparkling in hand. Luckily that's just what's on offer at this first stop. A staff member explains four different sparklings (the brut, Cygnet rosé, sparkling pinot shiraz and sweet cuvée riche), and you get a full glass of whichever one of the four you choose. You have a bit of time at Chandon, so if you want to do a full tasting ($12 for about six tastes) or order a second glass, go for it. The second stop is at small winery Soumah, which is an abbreviation for South of the Maroondah Highway. It sells Yarra Valley stalwarts chardonnay and pinot noir, but it also specialises in northern Italian varietals like nebbiolo, brachetto, pinot grigio and savagnin, which the winery has renamed 'Savarro'. After the tasting and a chat with Soum
More things to do in Melbourne this month
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