Best things to do in Melbourne in November
Upcoming drag king and queens get the chance to practise their shows and refine their acts every Thursday night at Melbourne's favourite LGBTQIA+ venue (as voted by Time Out readers), Sircuit. Bio queens, drag queens, trash queens and drag kings all perform, and the event is hosted by famed drag queen Missy La ’Minx. It's a chance for up-and-coming performers to get experience, and for audiences of course it's a night of fantastic drag. The bar offers $5 pints from 7pm until 10pm, and entry is free.
It seems 18+ parties by some of our favourite educational attractions are all the rage right now. Case in point: Melbourne’s Sea Life Aquarium is throwing adults-only parties after dark this year. Intrigued? The event will be taking place on selected Friday evenings with punters able to go on an after-hours marine adventure with all the weird and wonderful animals that the aquarium has to offer. But let's not be koi – the best part is you'll be able to do it all with a glass of wine in your hand. For $59 per person, you'll score entry to Sea Life Nights, as well as a cocktail and canapé on arrival. There will be a cash bar offering red, white and sparkling wine, beer, soft drinks, juice and mineral water. More food will be available for purchase, including buttermilk chicken fillet burgers, wagyu beef cheeseburgers and tempura cauliflower tacos. Additional entertainment comes by way of a live band who will be playing tunes well into the night.
If you've ever wanted to make your own cheese, this is the masterclass for you. Henry and the Fox is offering a series of masterclasses to teach you how to make all kinds of cheese from around the world – and yes, tasting is encouraged. Classes offered include everything from brie to tallegio to peccorino, halloumi and mozzarella, and each class is marked with a level of difficulty. Each class is $89 per person, and they run for three hours. The classes include a glass of chardonnay or pinot noir on arrival, plus a shared cheese board. You'll also get to take home your cheesy creations at the end.
If all you sell is raspberries (or olives, or rhubarb, or honey), then you've got to have a pretty strong passion for them. Every third Saturday of the month, enthusiasm for high quality local produce runs like electricity at this Port Melbourne arts space, and your tastebuds will feel it too.Grab a fresh, crusty baguette to go with your market haul salad for later, stock up on seasonal produce and a treat or two for afternoon tea (handmade chocolate biscuits, anyone?).The Gasworks Farmers' Market is plastic free so make sure to bring your reusable bags, baskets and coffee cups.
The volunteer-run Veg Out Community Garden's farmers' market, open the first Saturday of each month, overflows with local organic produce, jams and preserves, handmade bread and sundry delights to fill up your basket. This blue-eyed bloke's name is Rod Blake, but his customers know him as Blakey. On any given Veg Out Saturday market, you'll find him swapping stories with a young couple while weighing bendy zucchinis, or talking footy with the 10-year-old son of a long-term customer. "Nearly everything here – kale, capsicum, gem squash – were all picked yesterday," explains Blakey. Along with his wife Meg, Blakey's been growing organic produce at their Grampians farm for over two decades, ever since he parted ways with pesticides ("nasties!"). At 10am, the Bellellen Grampians Organics stall is buzzing over the sound of a busker playing acoustic guitar. Stocks are depleting, but the two never falter in their back-and-forth energy and banter, despite getting up at 1am. "I'm staying in Melbourne tonight because I've got a little party to go to!"
An orchestra and a physicist are collaborating for an event that will bring science and music together at Hamer Hall. Professor Brian Cox, one of the world’s pre-eminent physicists, will join the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra with conductor Daniel Harding for two evenings on Saturday, 16 November and Sunday, 17 November and take you through the big questions of eternity, death, rebirth and existence. Paul Dean’s violin concerto A Brief History of Time, which was dedicated to late physicist and professor Stephen Hawking, will be performed by violinist virtuoso Jack Liebeck with the orchestra. The first movement from Mahler’s Tenth Symphony will be the centrepiece of this musical movement as it communicates the composer’s struggle with the idea of the finite nature of our existence. Guests will be treated to music from the pre-scientific age and Professor Cox will talk about our universe and solar system, presenting what was known about the world when the composers created their music and what is known now. The performance on Saturday, 16 November will begin at 7.30pm and will feature a post-concert conversation with Professor Cox and special guests. The other performance on Sunday, 17 November will begin at 4pm. Ticket prices range from $124 to $199 and can be purchased here.
Melbourne's killer winery music festival is returning this November. Grapevine is back this year for a full-bodied day of music, wine, food and views. The 2019 line-up for Grapevine is a electro-pop mish-mash of largely Aussie artists (including a healthy number of women). This year get ready for indie pop-rocks Two Door Cinema Club; soft electro-popper Mallrat; Sydney warbler Jack River; the over-achieving house and electronic duo Flight Facilities and Māori-Novocastrian pop artist Kira Puru. In previous years the festival was held at Rochford Winery, the same location that A Day on the Green is often held. However, the success of Grapevine has allowed it to purchase its own winery that's been aptly named Grapevine Estate. The address for Grapevine Estate has yet to be revealed, although it's pitched as 35 minutes drive from the CBD (so, not as far as Rochford). As well as great tunes, guests will also sample great food and wine from some of the local wineries. Grapevine lands in Melbourne on Saturday, November 23.
The most famou burlesque performer in the world, Dita Von Teese, is bringing her corsets and class to Melbourne. Her new tour, Glamonatrix, will continue the genre-dominating path of her last show, The Art of the Teese, with four dazzling burlesque acts. In performances that maintain a healthy level of humor and self-awareness, you’ll see Von Teese pop out of a cake, ride a giant bejewelled lippy across the stage, tame metaphorical felines in a circus-styled act, and resurrect her famed martini glass performance with fresh style. This 1940s-inspired striptease variety show will have a soundtrack by Von Teese herself – yep, she also creates dreamy, ’80s-twinged electro-pop tracks as well as designing costumes, modelling and acting. She’ll be joined by burlesque stars for the tour, including New York gem Dirty Martin and fierce Aussie performer Zelia Rose. And with an aim to highlight the beauty of diversity, the show will feature other performers who are male, female, gender fluid and from varied backgrounds and of all body types. As always, the charismatic crew will be rocking and dropping some splendid frocks. They’ll don and derob outfits by the UK’s Jenny Packham, corset specialist Mister Pearl, French couturier Alexis Mabille, burlesque star Catherine D’Lish and New York’s Brooks Brothers, plus Louboutins to make their toes sparkle. Melbourne audiences can celebrate sexuality with Dita Von Teese and her glamorous gang at two performances on November 30 and December 1
Who would have thought a music festival born and bred in Canberra would become so popular? Spilt Milk has proven it has the raucous chops to throw a damn fine festival year in year out and so has expanded beyond the teensy-tiny borders of the ACT. In 2019 Spilt Milk is for the first time road-tripping down to the hip regional town of Ballarat for a second festival date. The Victorian version of the music, art and food festival will feature the same big-name international headliners as Canberra. Festivalgoers will be treated to the likes of the infectiously catchy Khalid; synth-pop outfit Chvrches; Brisvegas rock ratbags Dune Rats; the precociously talented G Flip; 2018 Triple J Hottest 100 winners Ocean Alley; rising American rapper Juice Wrld; and indie music faves Middle Kids. The Ballarat date will also feature Melbourne lo-fi band Rat!Hammock, though we will be missing out on the increasingly impressive all-girl Canberra band Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers. As well as a phenomenal line-up of musicians, Spilt Milk is inviting the art of Studio A, Travis Price and Bacondrum to the festival. The full list of snack sellers is still to be announced but so far confirmed is Belle’s Hot Chicken, Bluebonnet Barbecue and Donugs (giant, doughnut-shaped chicken nuggets. Oh the humanity). Spilt Milk plays in Ballarat on Saturday, November 20. General release tickets go on sale 8am Thursday, June 13.
The peacefully minded yoga festival Wanderlust returns to Melbourne on Saturday, November 9 at Alexandra Gardens. The festival comprises of a bunch of different events, including a "mindful triathlon", which combines an exhilarating 5k run, 75 minutes of yoga and a 25-minute guided mass meditation. There will also be a dance party and a host of motivational talks to get amongst. Experienced yoga and meditation teachers will guide you through the classes which will surely calm even the most restless of minds. Tickets can be purchased online and start at $49 for early-bird tickets (available for a limited time), $65 at regular pricing for general admission and $95 for premium tickets. A select number of VIP tickets are also on offer for $135 per person. All tickets include a donation to the festival’s partner charity Breast Council Network Australia.
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