The PRWIRE Press Releases http:// 2017-02-21T02:20:13Z Tech21 brings parents unlimited fun family time with Evo Play 2017-02-21T02:20:13Z tech21-brings-parents-unlimited-fun-family-time-with-evo-play SYDNEY, 21 February, 2017 – Tech21, the leader in impact protection for mobile devices has launched its new range of cases for the iPad in Australia: Evo Play. “Kids + iPads” isn’t always the safest pairing if your iPad isn’t protected, but it can certainly be one of the most fun for inquisitive minds. Whether it’s watching the latest episode of Peppa Pig or navigating through the back garden jungle discovering new wildlife, iPads can open up a world of exploration, but more often than not, a small chip here or a little crack there means that fun can be cut short. Prolong the play time and keep that shiny new look and feel to your iPad even when little fingers have put it through its paces thanks to tech21’s new iPad case, Evo Play. This comfortable and lightweight case has been designed to offer unbeatable drop protection from up to two metres, and with its iconic design, vibrant colours and handy multi-use handle, this case will remove any glimmer of fear you had in handing over your iPad to your children. This case is constructed almost entirely from tech21’s unique material, FlexShock™ Foam, meaning all sides and surfaces are protected from drops as the material moulds snugly to your iPad. Better still, the case is entirely dishwasher safe, so it’s easy to keep clean, and when it’s on your iPad, its sealed outer shell is abrasion/bite resistant, preventing any bacteria from getting in under the surface. “We’ve designed the all-new Evo Play with kids in mind. We know children love to learn, play and explore, and we recognise iPads are a great way for them to do this. However, they may not love your precious iPad back, so Evo Play is there for you,” comments Jason Roberts, CEO, tech21. “Evo Play is lightweight and comfortable for little hands to hold, yet strong enough to keep your iPad safe from tumbles and drops.” Evo Play is available in pink/purple and blue/green colours from tech21.com, RRP $79.95 for Apple iPad mini, mini 2, mini 3 & mini 4, and RRP $109.95 for Apple iPad Air 2. Much like all of tech21’s products, Evo Play comes with a simple promise: it’s rigorously tested to work harmoniously with your iPad. Like the technology it’s designed to protect, it uses the latest science, ingenious design and unbeatable user-friendliness to make advanced impact protection possible. Tech21 calls it ‘Protection Made Intelligent’. ### For further information, questions, or cases for review, please contact: Jim Barker, tech21/Poem Phone: +61 418 163 770 Email: jim@poemgroup.com.au High-res images: Download here About tech21 Since 2005, tech21 has been developing the most advanced, scientifically proven cases and screen shields for mobile, tablet and laptop devices worldwide. Tech21 combines science, engineering and British design to create products that address three core consumer benefits: style, protection and performance. As the brand evolves to continue meeting the needs of its consumers, tech21 has developed the most advanced impact protection material on the market – FlexShock™. The ultra-thin and lightweight material absorbs and dissipates force and can withstand drops up to 4 metres. In addition tech21 puts all its products through a rigorous testing program, and in an industry first has partnered with the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) to develop its testing methodology. This ensures that the tests tech21 products have to pass are overseen by independent experts. Tech21 is the number one case brand in the UK. For more information, visit tech21.com. Castlemaine State Festival: Focus on the Phillipines 2017-02-16T22:25:00Z castlemaine-state-festival-focus-on-the-phillipines From a carefully curated program of films from the world’s oldest film industry, to a specially created sculpture from one of the Philippines most exciting young artists, to a diverse compilation of videos and moving image works from across the Philippine archipelago, this year’s program uncovers the real history and promising future of an exciting nation. The 2017 program shines a bright light on the Philippines featuring a program of film, visual and socio-political artworks. Exploring Australia’s connection with the country, with more than 100,000 Filipino Australian living in Victoria alone, these works delve deep into the cultural layers of the country. Crossroads - a thoughtfully curated program of award-winning and highly acclaimed Filipino films, assembled specifically for the 2017 Castlemaine State Festival, will provide unique insight into Philippine cinema and the country’s eventful and intriguing past. With the Filipino film industry widely considered to be the oldest in Asia, the films selected for Crossroads reveal the complex relationships between Filipino film and Philippine society, and how potent social forces and film have the capacity to influence one another with eight film screenings at the Theatre Royal from the 18-25 March. Curated especially for the 2017 Castlemaine State Festival, periSCOPE is a compilation of videos and moving image works from across the Philippine archipelago. The collection has been compiled by 98B COLLABoratory, a multidisciplinary artist-run initiative that seeks to establish a convergence between artists, designers, curators, writers, activists, educators and the general public. The works selected by multiple curators from across the Philippines, with the resulting compendium showcasing diverse glimpses and peripheries as seen through many lenses, offer rare insight into regional contemporary Filipino art production and demonstrate a striking range of themes, geographies and cultural issues. One of the Philippines’ most exciting young artists (with past works including a special commission for Lady Gaga), Leeroy New will create a temporary sculptural installation called La Puerta Del Laberinto (The Door to the Labyrinth) combining visual arts, fashion, film and theatre for the exterior of the Castlemaine Art Museum. Leeroy New is one of the Philippines’ most intriguing young artists. In 2008 Leeroy won the prestigious Ateneo Art Award and was invited to take up a six week residency in 2009 at the La Trobe University Visual Arts Centre in Bendigo. In 2017, he returns with this ambitious new project which responds to the unique characteristics and context of place and will be made with recycled materials collected from the local area. Festival Director, Martin Paten says: “The Philippines could be seen as an unusual choice of country to feature, but it's a fitting choice I feel to follow-on from our Cuban program last festival. Like Cuba, the Philippines has been heavily influenced by American and Spanish colonial culture, and has suffered significant political division and controversy. But most importantly, Australia has extremely strong connections with the Philippines. There are more than 400,000 Filipino / Australians, of whom almost a quarter live in Victoria, and yet we know so little about the country.” “The Philippines is not a favoured holiday destination for many Australians - but it could be. And we can only be enriched by knowing more about the cultural layers of this diverse nation - with a population of over 100 million and more than 7000 islands producing a wide range of artistic riches. I feel so excited by this year’s international relationship with artists and their works from The Philippines.” The 2017 Castlemaine State Festival runs from the 17-26 March. Visit: http://castlemainefestival.com.au Work Club wants to help bring side projects to life, launching after hours memberships 2016-12-19T22:10:00Z work-club-wants-to-help-bring-side-projects-to-life-launching-after-hours-memberships 20 December 2016 - Melbourne. Work Club Melbourne today launches its ‘side project’ membership, catering for anyone who wants to bring their side project to life. The membership provides access to Work Club on weekends and after 5.00pm on weekdays. Including all the benefits of Work Club after hours, the space is the ideal environment to grow a startup or develop a new career. Work Club member, ex Managing Director of Artesian Venture Partners and now founder and CEO of a new startup Xchange, Caitlin Iles, said “When I was working full-time and trying to develop Xchange I spent hours sitting in café or hotel lobbies feeding off the energy of its patrons. I was looking for a space like Work Club that I could access before and after work and on weekends where I could focus and incubate my ideas. I only wish I had found Work Club earlier in my journey of being a founder, I am sure I would have been months ahead of where I am now.” “My new business Xchange is currently in its infancy - we are preparing to launch in 2017. Without a doubt the quality of the interiors, the team and caliber of my colleagues at Work Club in Melbourne and Sydney have brought a level of credibility to my business that has given us a head start. In many ways it feels like an unfair advantage.” Founder of Work Club, Soren Trampedach, who has also designed workplaces for Google and Microsoft, said, “Being a Work Club member gives you so much more than just access to the highest quality workspace. Members also have access to our entertainment and hospitality lounges, concierge services, and member relationships so those starting their side project journey can meet people who are further along and can provide advice and inspiration to help with new ideas and information.” “We know that there are many people currently working in a corporate job that are either starting their own business on the side, or planning to become an independent consultant. This creates a need for energizing and inspiring environments where these corporate escapees can safely begin their transition to life outside of traditional employment. This side project membership provides a soft landing.” Ten side project memberships are available at Work Club Melbourne. Work Club Sydney plan to introduce this membership category in early 2017. More information: http://workclubglobal.com/memberships Short + Sweet: SNACKABLETV youth broadcast network for short-form content launches 2016-12-01T01:16:58Z short-sweet-snackabletv-youth-broadcast-network-for-short-form-content-launches Meet SNACKABLETV, a revolutionary digital youth network housing the best in bite-sized content. It’s an entirely new way for young people all over the world to access high quality short-form entertainment for FREE, without annoying advertisements or subscriptions. VIEW THE SIZZLE REEL Millennials are diverse, curious and engaged - so, SNACKABLETV is too. It does not discriminate against gender, sexuality, race, creed or socio-economic status, only against beige content. SNACKABLETV launches with solid collaborations and partnerships as official Youth & Content Broadcaster for Sydney Festival, co-produced podcasts with the team from Melbourne’s Sans Pants Radio and short films produced by future creative superstars from the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS). Offering something for everyone, SNACKABLETV plays host to content across seven channels; Culture, Film, Gaming, Music, Podcast, Style, and a dedicated hub for today’s news, events, and the best of the net; What’s Hot. Original series’ will feature respected members of the creative community including; street artist Scott Marsh; music journalist Danny Clayton; celebrity fashion stylist Mikey Ayoubi; mindfulness coach Kylie Ryan; comedians Rhys Nicholson and Robbie Armfield; musicians Client Liaison, Sleep Makes Waves and The Jezabels; and so much more incredible talent in front of and behind the lens. In the face of a fracturing media landscape, SNACKABLETV also offers a solution for brands to target a millennial audience utilising quality native content by creating this ‘safe space’ free of subscriptions and free of pre-rolls and pop-up ads to give viewers a great experience which will keep them coming back for more. The network will lead the fight against ‘Digital Litter’, a result of too much access to poorly made content. Everything on SNACKABLETV is short, sharp, and captivating. It’s video that is never boring, always inspiring, with an added dose of learning for the socially aware, completely free of charge to the viewer. SNACKABLETV Co-founders Kate Edwards and Shae Constantine said today: “We are extremely proud to be launching Australia’s first short form broadcast network made especially for young people. “SNACKABLETV is purpose built as much for the consumer as it is for the creator – it’s a conduit between the two worlds. We identified a gap, in that there is so much good content out there and before now it hasn’t had a home or a chance to get to an audience who will appreciate it. “Our doors are wide open to young creatives and creators. We want to distribute the best short-form content the world has seen, and this is only possible with a truly robust digital platform to facilitate the relationship between creator and audience. That platform is SNACKABLETV.” Content is currently available online (mobile, tablet or desktop) via SNACKABLETV.tv The bar has been set high and SNACKABLETV is committed to pushing the boundaries in both the controversy and quality stakes. New content will be released on all channels across the network constantly. Stay tuned for updates on exciting co-productions and distribution partnerships. In the face of a fracturing media landscape, SNACKABLETV also offers a solution for brands to target a millennial audience utilising quality native content by creating this ‘safe space’ free of subscriptions and free of pre-rolls and pop-up ads to give viewers a great experience which will keep them coming back for more. Interview and content requests contact The Lantern Group: Louisa Read +61 412 955 101 louisa@lanterngroup.com.au Fiona Gulin +61 487 992 333 fiona@lanterngroup.com.au CONNECT WITH SNACKABLETV FACEBOOK INSTAGRAM #snackableTV MEDIA MATERIALS DROPBOX Nail Your Christmas Shopping This Year With RedBalloon 2016-11-15T07:29:56Z nail-your-christmas-shopping-this-year-with-redballoon-1 RedBalloon, Australia’s leading online experience and ‘things to do’ destination is taking the hassle out of Christmas shopping by revealing the latest, must-have gifts as we head into the festive season, with Christmas gift guides for each state and territory in Australia attached. With Christmas just around the corner, RedBalloon promises to take the stress out of present buying this year. And with more than 3500 experiences to choose from, they guarantee you’ll find something to suit everyone. “We’ve seen a strong increase in gourmet experience purchases over the last few years, driven by the growing reputation of Australia’s food and wine our increasingly acclaimed chefs and our passion for home cooking. Last Christmas the gourmet category was our most popular gifting category so we’ve worked hard through the year to ensure we have an even wider range of hands-on experiences on offer including cooking classes, barista courses, wine, beer and cheese tastings and gourmet gifts for anyone, no matter what their taste,” RedBalloon CEO Nick Baker said. RedBalloon gifts and vouchers are available up until Christmas Day, to ensure even the most last minute of shoppers can purchase something unique, meaningful and timely for the biggest gift giving day of the year. Aussies can browse more than 3500 experiences on offer at redballoon.com.au REDBALLOON’S TOP 3 CHRISTMAS GIFTING CATEGORIES 1. Gourmet Experiences Barista training course Patisserie masterclass Brewery tours and beer tasting 2. Outdoor Activities Horse riding activities Scenic cruises Vintage bike ride with picnic 3. Water Sport Experiences Sea turtle snorkel tour Crocodile cage of death Flyboarding experience ABOUT REDBALLOON RedBalloon.com.au is Australia’s most awarded online experience retailer and home of ‘things to do’. RedBalloon has sold almost 3 million experiences since it was established in 2001. Today it offers more than 3500 unique experiences from more than 1000 providers across Australia and New Zealand. RedBalloon also distributes gift cards through selected major retailers nationally, including Coles, Woolworths, Big W, Australia Post, Target, Kmart and Officeworks. Visit redballoon.com.au Further Information: Laura Sedgwick, lsedgwick@porternovelli.com.au / 02 8987 2114/ 0451 041 705 The Jungle Book Spectacular 2016-11-10T04:33:45Z the-jungle-book-spectacular In this classic musical based on Rudyard Kipling’s book, Mowgli (Bodhi Brambleby), an abandoned child raised by wolves, has his peaceful existence threatened by the return of the man-eating tiger Shere Khan (Dhani Chalmers). Facing certain death, Mowgli must overcome his reluctance to leave his wolf family and return to the “man village.” But he is not alone on his quest: Aided by Bagheera the panther (Ellen Adlington), and later by the carefree bear Balloo (Byron Mitchell) who teaches Mowgli the importance of kicking back and enjoying the bare necessities of life, he braves the jungle’s many perils including the fire-hungry ape King Louie (Saphira Newton).   The Bi-annual musical was an incredible whole Sathya Sai School effort with teachers and parents helping with sets and costumes. Creative director, Michelle Carlier, deserves a huge congratulation and clearly knows a thing or two about directing a musical! As do our wonderful students who displayed a polished performance, taking full ownership of the performance with minimal need for cues or prompting. Each actor, from the smallest role to the largest, had their moments and displayed the values of cooperation, teamwork, determination, perseverance, flexibility and kindness. Their enthusiasm and hard work shone through the performance. Musical director, Kate Oakley Grant, put together a lively neo-swing musical with the message of friendship, cooperation, kindness and appreciating life – with just the “bare necessities.” One parent commented: “I’ve seen The Jungle Book performed many times, and this has been one of my favourite productions. I found myself smiling throughout and wanting to sing along to my favourite songs. Everyone I spoke to was raving about the performance!” Watch the full feature video here. Nominations Open for 2017 Queen of Country Music Quest 2016-09-20T01:30:37Z nominations-open-for-2017-queen-of-country-music-quest Nominations for the 2017 Queen of Country Music Quest have opened, with local businesses and community groups urged to get involved in the event that’s been supporting local women since 1984. Now in its 32nd year, the Queen of Country Music Quest empowers young women from the Tamworth region to develop important personal and professional skills like public speaking, networking and community service. This year, the Quest has been given an added boost with the announcement it will be run by the Tamworth branch of international female advocacy group Zonta, which empowers women through service and advocacy. Tamworth Zonta Club president Deb Maes said she was excited about taking the Quest forward. “The club is committed to expanding the Quest and are joining collaboratively with others in the community so the Quest can be an even more valuable experience for the entrants, sponsors, employers and the whole community,” Deb said. Nominations close September 30, and is open to women aged 18-35 years who must be nominated and sponsored by their employer, a local business or community organisation to get involved. All Quest nominees will receive professional development in October and November including workshops on etiquette, grooming, personal presentation, media training, confidence coaching and a six-week public speaking and leadership course from The Tamworth Communicators. In December, 15 Quest finalists will be named, then officially “sashed” at the Tamworth Country Music Festival Opening Concert on Friday 20 January. These finalists will act as advocates of the Tamworth Country Music Festival and also of Tamworth as a destination of choice in NSW. The major honours -- Queen and Princess of Country Music -- will be announced at a gala dinner at the Tamworth Jockey Club on Friday 27th January 2017. The winner will be awarded the major prize, which this year is a trip to Tamworth’s sister city, Gore in New Zealand where she will represent Tamworth at the 2017 Gore Country Music Festival. Both the Queen and Princess will be ambassadors for Tamworth and the region throughout 2017, spending the next 12 months involved in a range of high-profile civic and community events, guest speaking engagements and corporate and festival functions. Last year’s Quest Winner, Madeline Lang, encouraged local women keen on personal and professional development to seek nomination from their employer or community group. “The Quest is a unique experience and I would absolutely encourage anyone who is interested in personal development to get involved. It’s also a great chance to learn new skills, gain professional and personal confidence and make some good friends along the way,” Madeline said. Entrants must be available to attend all scheduled events throughout the Tamworth Country Music Festival and later events throughout 2017. Nomination forms can be found at the Toyota Country Music Festival Tamworth website located here. >ENDS< Media Contact: Adam Arndell C7EVEN Communications Tel: 02 6766 4513 / 0403 372 889 Sami Yusuf, Britain’s biggest singer in the Middle East, announces first New Zealand concert 2016-05-19T01:30:28Z sami-yusuf-britain-s-biggest-singer-in-the-middle-east-announces-first-new-zealand-concert This July, experience Sami Yusuf’s unique voice firsthand when the UK’s biggest star in the Middle East takes the stage in Auckland.   Immerse yourself in the world of “Spiritique” as the founder of the genre, Sami Yusuf, graces Auckland’s Town Hall with peace and harmony on Sunday 10 July 2016. With tickets starting from only NZ$65, this is the best opportunity for New Zealand fans to personally experience Yusuf’s inspiring music.   The Guardian recognised Yusuf as Britain’s biggest star in the Middle East who has sold 34 million albums to date and is distinguished worldwide for the celebrated concerts of harmony he performs. His Auckland show will be no different.   In the current global atmosphere of conflict and turmoil, Yusuf's message of peace and harmony is timely and much needed.   Appointed by the United Nations as both the World’s Global Ambassador Against Hunger and the promoter of World peace and harmony, Yusuf is by no means your typical British celebrity. The brilliant singer is also well renowned for his astounding talent as a composer, producer and instrumentalist. The transcendent message of traditional music speaks for the core of Yusuf’s passions. He strongly believes that the world’s traditions are expressions of the same ultimate truth. Music for him is an expression of divine love and the love of all the great traditions. Speaking of his very first Australian and New Zealand tour, the London based singer cannot conceal his excitement. “I do know that both Australia and New Zealand are unbelievably beautiful, and the people are accepting, kind and hospitable. Also, the aboriginal culture has always been an object of fascination for me. I’m keen and eager to learn more about the two countries,” said Sami Yusuf.   One of Yusuf’s largest live concerts was in Istanbul where he performed to over 250,000 people and also composed and arranged music for the film “1001 Inventions and the World of Ibn Al-Havthan”.   Auckland fans will see Yusuf perform at Great Hall, Auckland Town Hall on July 10 at 8pm. Ticket prices start from only NZ$65.     SAMI YUSUF is appearing at:-  Auckland, Sunday 10th July 2016 at the Great Hall, Auckland Town Hall Tickets available through Ticketmaster: http://bit.ly/1ThvWco     MEDIA CONTACT Holysmoke! Agency Laura Heslop, Yvonne Kong or Amanda Fry E: laura@holysmokeagency.com; yvonne@holysmoke.com or amanda@holysmokeagency.com P: +61 407 078 407 NSW South Coast Students Cash in on Financial Literacy 2016-02-22T03:12:57Z nsw-south-coast-students-cash-in-on-financial-literacy-1 Illawarra, Shoalhaven and Far South Coast primary school students will learn crucial financial literacy skills during March thanks to Horizon Credit Union and The National Theatre for Children (NTC). The organisations will once again be delivering Showdown at Two Bob Billabong to schools across the regions at no cost. The tour begins on Monday 7th March and will visit schools in Albion Park, Nowra, Coledale, Moruya, Broulee, Tathra, Bega and Cobargo.   Horizon’s financial literacy program gained national attention last year having been awarded ‘Highly Commended’ by Financial Literacy Australia.   “We’re thrilled to be in a position to give back to the community by sponsoring these educational programs for children’s financial literacy. One of the things that set us apart from other financial institutions is that we exist for the benefit of our members. Our main aim is to help them manage their money better. Establishing good savings habits at a young age is a priceless skill that can be carried through to adulthood” said Horizon CEO Jon Stanfield.   Showdown at Two Bob Billabong is a twenty five minute performance delivered live into schools by two professional actors and uses comedy and an exciting adventure story to teach students all about what is money, the uses of money, why we should save and how we can save. The content of the show is curriculum aligned while the format is theatrical, energetic and fun. The information is supplemented by student workbooks filled with activities and educational games, teacher guides to be used in the classroom and interactive digital learning materials that reinforce the educational points, all of which are included free of charge.  The thorough nature of the multiplatform program is the result of time-tested experience. Tobias Benn, the Managing Director of NTC Australia explains. “A huge part of our success is the fact that when kids laugh, they learn so much more willingly and enthusiastically and can’t wait to get home and share what they learned. The information is presented in such a fun, energetic way that students will remember it for years to come. It’s a way for our sponsor to spread these important messages into the greater community.”  About Horizon Credit Union Horizon Credit Union is the only truly local South Coast financial institution. It is in its 51st year of operation and has a branch network that spans the South Coast of NSW. Horizon looks after over 14,500 people in that region. It is a member-owned financial institution that does everything a bank can do. Anyone can join Horizon. Horizon returns profits back to members in the form of competitive rates, fair fees and support in their communities. www.horizoncreditunion.com.au About NTC In 1978, NTC dedicated itself to delivering entertaining and highly educational programs to positively motivate families, students and educators.  We inspire young people – and their families – to explore important and timely curricular subjects including: wise energy use, science, technology, engineering and maths, financial literacy, health and nutrition and environmental literacy, among others.  Originally focused on delivering its programs via live theatre, NTC is now an award-winning educational content provider whose repertoire includes print and digital curriculum and extracurricular events.  We have developed the art of teaching through educational story-telling into a science of its own, and are currently the largest in-school touring educational production company in the world. www.ntccorporate.com.au Mardi Gras Film Festival Coming to the Blue Mountains for the first time! 2016-02-02T23:53:54Z mardi-gras-film-festival-coming-to-the-blue-mountains-for-the-first-time 3 February 2016: For the first time, and in partnership with the local Pink Mountains organisation, The Carrington Hotel in Katoomba will host the best five films of the 23rd Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen, as well as the winner of the prestigious My Queer Career awards from 11 – 13 March 2016. Tickets on sale at queerscreen.org.au and via the Mardi Gras Film Festival app.   “We are delighted to bring the Mardi Gras Film Festival to the Blue Mountains for the first time and to screen at the beautiful Carrington Hotel,” said Festival Director Paul Struthers. “It’s very exciting to bring the best festival films on tour to such a supportive community”.   Peter Hackney, Pink Mountains co-convenor said: “It’s indicative of the burgeoning LGBTIQ community in the Mountains that Mardi Gras has decided to expand outside its Inner Sydney heartland and come to our region. They’ve seen that we have a vital, rapidly growing queer scene and have responded accordingly.   “We congratulate the Mardi Gras Film Festival for thinking outside the box and we urge all local LGBTIQ people and visitors to support these film screenings wholeheartedly”, he added.   The screenings include:  REMEMBERING THE MAN – a bittersweet documentary further exploring the relationship between Australians Timothy Conigrave and John Caleo as detailed in Holding the Man. This film was the winner of Most Popular Documentary at the Adelaide Film Festival. Friday 11 March, 7pm.   The winner of My Queer Career, Australia’s largest LGBTIQ film prize, will be shown on Friday 11 March along with REMEMBERING THE MAN. This year the eight finalists are: Kate Halpin (A PRIVATE MATTER), Brian Fairbairn and Karl Eccleston (DON’T CRY THOSE TEARS), Tim Marshall (FOLLOWERS), Nathan Keene (LITTLE BOY BLUE), Stevie Cruz-Martin (MARROW), Joshua Longhurst (OASIS), Ben Southwell (ON STAGE), and Dannika Horvat (THE SUMMER OF ABC BURNS).  LIZ IN SEPTEMBER - The striking supermodel and actor Patricia Velásquez comes to the screen in this Venezuelan lesbian film. Winner of the audience award at Miami’s queer film festival, this film is captivating. Saturday 12 March, 6pm.  BEAUTIFUL SOMETHING - Featuring some of the hottest sex scenes from any LGBTIQ film this year, this movie is a sexy and tender glimpse into life for the contemporary gay man as the stories of Brian a poet and Jim, an actor intertwine. Saturday 12 March, 8pm.  TCHINDAS – A sensual and transporting documentary that reveals an open and multicultural corner of Africa seldom explored, follows the life of three queer artists as they prepare for a spectacular Carnival. Sunday 13 March, 2pm.  THAT’S NOT US – With beautiful cinematography, and nuanced and natural performances, this engaging dramedy about relationships is a breath of fresh air. Three couples – one gay, one lesbian, one straight - are on a weekend away at a beach house managing the intricacies, vulnerabilities, laughter and connection that comes with relationships. Sunday 13 March, 4pm.     -ENDS- Media Enquiries: Louise Nealon, CallidusPR T: (02) 9283 4114/ 0403 569 177 E: louise@calliduspr.com Mardi Gras Film Festival Popping at the Seams! 2016-01-14T23:58:26Z mardi-gras-film-festival-popping-at-the-seams With 20 additional screenings, 4 new venues, 9 international guests, countless Australian premieres and an increased cash prize for the My Queer Career winners, the 23rd Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen is set to be the biggest year yet in the Festival’s history. The full program and all tickets are now on sale at queerscreen.org.au or through the Mardi Gras Film Festival app.   Running from 18 February to 3 March 2016, the Festival will feature 75 screenings at Event Cinemas in George Street and new-to-festival venues the Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace Cremorne, the Golden Age Cinema and Bar in Surry Hills and The Harbour. From mid-March to early April the Festival will travel to the Riverside Theatre in Parramatta and for the first time, the Carrington Hotel in the Blue Mountains.   “Every year we aim to be bigger and better than before and this year we have nailed it,” explains Festival Director Paul Struthers. “We have more diversified content including a lot more lesbian films, more transgender films, more documentaries, more international guests, more masterclasses and more screenings at more venues including two free community screenings. There is absolutely something for everyone in this year’s line-up and we are really excited to launch the full program today”.   An absolutely jam-packed program offers LGBTIQ stories across the whole spectrum from fantastical feature films to raw documentaries and promises to make audiences laugh, cry, think, be inspired and engaged. Highlights include:   CHEMSEX - a fascinating and honest insight into the lives of modern gay men in the UK who engage in weekend-long, drug fueled orgies, a.k.a ‘chemsex’ or ‘wired fun’. Participants hold nothing back and the documentary offers untouched, gritty and sometimes confronting point of view from a variety of lives within the London chemsex scene. The screening will be following by a panel discussion.   Andrew Steggall’s DEPARTURE is a visual delight bringing us to the peaceful French countryside where Elliot on holiday with his mum is awakened to previously unknown desires. With a surprisingly honest portrayal of family, young love and self-discovery, this film will haunt you in the best possible way. Filmmaker Andrew Steggall will be at the Festival and participating in a Q&A after the screening.  THE GIRL KING tells the story of the real life Queen Kristina of Sweden a brilliant 17th century monarch who fought the conservative forces of her court to modernize Sweden. Shocking the court with her refusal to marry, Kristina fell for her lady-in-waiting and names her as the Queen’s bed companion. This is the first film to delve deeper into the Queen’s sexuality and won Best Actress award at the Montréal World Film Festival.   Sure to become an audience favourite, Dame Maggie Smith and Alan Bennett give stellar performances in THE LADY IN THE VAN, fresh from the Toronto Film Festival. This is a quirky, true story about a homeless elderly woman called Mary Shepard who moved her battered van into Bennett’s driveway and refused to leave.    A superb Australian feature from 2013 My Queer Perspective winner Grant Scicluna, and featuring actors Reef Ireland, Kerry Fox and Tom Green, DOWNRIVER is a mysterious story that follows protagonist James as he is released on parole for the murder of a child as a young boy and turns the idea of coming of age on its head. The cast and crew will participate in a Q&A after the screening.     The visually stunning GIRLS LOST is an emotionally raw Swedish urban fantasy film where three teenage girls are given the bodies of cisgender men for the night. When they realise how different they are treated as men then gain a new confidence as women while one realizes he may have been a boy all along.   A fascinating Australian documentary, ECCO HOMO asks a range of famous and not so famous people including U2 and INXS, the impossible question who was Troy Davies? Artist and performer, provocateur and chameleon, Davies charmed his way through a lifetime of fame, art, secrets, HIV, abuse and gender fluidity.   Starring Dianna Agron from Glee, BARE explores the vastness of Nevada’s landscape and the neon lights of its seedy nightlife as country girl Sarah is drawn unto a world of drugs, stripping, spirituality and sex by squatter Piper.   Exciting news for fans of hit online drama STARTING FROM…NOW!, the Festival presents the world premiere of the fourth season in one glorious sitting followed by a Q&A with the cast and crew. Following the complicated lives of four inner-city Sydney lesbians, the drama has amassed 20 million views over its first three seasons.   International directors and actors will be arriving from all over the world including from Germany: Marco Kreuzpaintner(director) and Kostja Ulmann(actor) of COMING IN and previously SUMMER STORM; Spain: Actor Marcal Forés from EVERLASTING LOVE; the UK Andrew Steggall (Director) DEPARTURE;  Canada: Christina Zeidler (Director) PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL MONOGAMIST; Switzerland Claudia Lorenz (Director) WHAT'S BETWEEN US and from the US Ray Yeung, Director and Chowee Leow - Co-Producer of FRONT COVER  and Nneka Onuorah Director of THE SAME DIFFERENCE. All international guests will participate in a Q&A discussion with the audience after their film screenings   My Queer Career, Australia’s largest LGBTIQ film prize has now been increased to a prize of $14,000 in cash and support and automatic nomination to the world-renowned Iris Prize competition. This year the eight finalists are: Kate Halpin (A PRIVATE MATTER), Brian Fairbairn and Karl Eccleston (DON’T CRY THOSE TEARS), Tim Marshall (FOLLOWERS), Nathan Keene (LITTLE BOY BLUE), Stevie Cruz-Martin (MARROW), Joshua Longhurst (OASIS), Ben Southwell (ON STAGE), and Dannika Horvat (THE SUMMER OF ABC BURNS).   Thanks to Screen NSW, Queer Screen is hosting four free events for local film makers with Australian and international talents. These include a production masterclass with US based director of THE SAME DIFFERENCE Nneka Onuorah; a masterclass in directing actors and your crew from COMING IN director Marco Kreuzpaintner and actor Kostja Ullmann; developing a strategy for the film festival circuit with DOWNRIVER director Grant Scicluna; and an industry forum on trends in LGBTIQ cinema.   In partnership with the City of Sydney, two free community screenings will be shown.  WHAT’S BETWEEN US looks at the aftermath of a straight husband coming out as gay as Frank admits to sexual attraction to men after 18 years of marriage and three children. THE YEAR WE THOUGHT ABOUT LOVE is a documentary following the personal lives of members of True Colours, a Boston based LGBTIQ youth troupe and delivers a powerful message on social change.   The always popular shorts section has been extended with this year with the exciting addition of the first ever Asia Pacific Queer Film Festival Alliance Shorts – a selection of the best shorts from a new alliance of 11 Asian queer film festivals.   There will also be a screening of Mixed Shorts featuring a collection of the year’s best lesbian, gay and transgender films; a special late-night collection of international Gay Shorts, and returning after a four year absence a great collection of Lesbian Shorts.     The Festival Bar will run every night from 6pm to late.    The 2016 Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen is supported by St George Bank, The Star Sydney, Event Cinemas George Street, AGL, ACON, Ovolo Hotels, Optus, City of Sydney, Screen NSW, South Australian Tourism and the Star Observer.  Tickets for all films are on sale now including flexi passes to 5 or 10 films. Please visit queerscreen.org.au or the Mardi Gras Film Festival app to book or call (02) 9332 4938 to become a Queer Screen member for discounted tickets and priority entry.   -ENDS-  Note to Editors:   Directors and actors from most films are available for interview  Screeners of most films are available for review and imagery is available for publication   Media Enquiries: Louise Nealon, CallidusPR T: (02) 9283 4114/ 0403 569 177 E: louise@calliduspr.com The Martian and SPECTRE arrive on Blu-ray & DVD 2016-01-05T23:00:00Z the-martian-and-spectre-arrive-on-blu-ray-dvd-digital-hd Two of 2015's worldwide box-office hits are due to release on 3D Blu-ray™ (The Martian), Blu-ray™, DVD & Digital HD (The Martian) this quarter:THE MARTIAN, arriving on Digital HD Wednesday 20 January and 3D Blu-ray™, Blu-ray & DVD Wednesday 10 February.SPECTRE, 007’s Latest Mission Available on Blu-ray™ & DVD on Wednesday 9 March See details below and press material attached. Kindest, NicolaSPECTRE007’s Latest Mission Available on Blu-ray™ & DVD on Wednesday 9 March  Sydney, AUSTRALIA (January 5, 2016) –The 24th James Bond adventure SPECTRE, from Albert R. Broccoli’s EON Productions, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, and Sony Pictures Entertainment, will be available to own on Blu-ray™ & DVD on Wednesday 9 March,  it was announced today by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.    Taking in more than $850 million (USD) worldwide, SPECTRE dominated the worldwide box-office making it one of the most successful Bond movies ever, shattering records in nearly every market it was released, led by a historic performance in the UK.  The latest installment from one of the longest-running film franchises in history gives fans never-before shared insight into the complexities that made James Bond the man he is today.   In SPECTRE, a cryptic message from the past sends James Bond (Daniel Craig) on a rogue mission to Mexico City and eventually Rome, where he meets Lucia Sciarra (Monica Bellucci), the beautiful and forbidden widow of an infamous criminal. Bond infiltrates a secret meeting and uncovers the existence of the sinister organisation known as SPECTRE.   Meanwhile back in London, Max Denbigh (Andrew Scott), the new head of the Centre for National Security, questions Bond’s actions and challenges the relevance of MI6, led by M (Ralph Fiennes). Bond covertly enlists Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) and Q (Ben Whishaw) to help him seek out Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux), the daughter of his old nemesis Mr. White (Jesper Christensen), who may hold the clue to untangling the web of SPECTRE. As the daughter of an assassin, she understands Bond in a way most others cannot.   As Bond ventures towards the heart of SPECTRE, he learns of a chilling connection between himself and the enemy he seeks, played by Christoph Waltz.   Sam Mendes returns to direct SPECTRE, with Daniel Craig reprising his role as 007 for the fourth time. The film is produced by Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli.  The screenplay is by John Logan and Neal Purvis & Robert Wade and Jez Butterworth, with a story by John Logan and Neal Purvis & Robert Wade.   With the Blu-ray, go behind-the-scenes of Bond’s latest mission with in-depth special features. Watch how the jaw-dropping opening scene was created in Mexico City.  Blu-ray™ Special Features: SPECTRE: Bond's Biggest Opening Sequence Video Blogs Director – Sam Mendes Supercars Introducing Léa Seydoux and Monica Bellucci “Writing’s on the Wall” Music Video Guinness World Record Gallery  DVD Special Features Video Blogs Director – Sam Mendes Supercars Day of the Dead Festival Introducing Léa Seydoux and Monica Bellucci Guinness World Record #  #  #  ABOUT EON PRODUCTIONS EON Productions Limited and Danjaq LLC are wholly owned and controlled by the Broccoli/Wilson family. Danjaq is the US based company that co-owns, with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, the copyright in the existing James Bond films and controls the right to produce future James Bond films as well as all worldwide merchandising. EON Productions, an affiliate of Danjaq, is the UK based production company which makes the James Bond films. The 007 franchise is the longest running in film history with twenty-four films produced since 1962.  Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli succeeded Albert R ‘Cubby’ Broccoli and have produced some of the most successful Bond films ever including CASINO ROYALE, QUANTUM OF SOLACE, SKYFALL & SPECTRE.  ABOUT METRO-GOLDWYN-MAYER Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer is a leading entertainment company focused on the production and global distribution of film and television content across all platforms. The company owns one of the world’s deepest libraries of premium film and television content.  In addition, MGM has investments in domestic and international television channels. For more information, visit www.mgm.com.  ABOUT TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX HOME ENTERTAINMENT Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, LLC (TCFHE) is the industry leading worldwide marketing, sales and distribution company for all Fox produced, acquired and third party partner film and television programing. Each year TCFHE expands its award-winning global product portfolio with the introduction of new entertainment content through established and emerging formats including DVD, Blu-ray™, Digital HD and VOD. Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment is a subsidiary of 20th Century Fox, a 21st Century Fox Company.  ABOUT SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 140 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.  Media Inquiries:   Nicola Franklin, Frank PRnicolafranklin@frankpr.com.au / 02 8202 0555                             NICOLA FRANKLIN Senior Account Executive FRANK PR – Australia T: +61 (0) 2 8202 0555 M: +61  (0) 434 527 382 E: nicolafranklin@frankpr.com.au Sydney, Australia: L2 Miller Lane, Pyrmont, NSW 2009 London, UK: 3rd Floor, Centro 4, 20-23 Mandela Street, London, NW1 0DU Manchester, UK: Conavon Court, 12 Blackfriars Street, Salford M3 5BQ Glasgow, UK: 4th Floor, 41 St Vincent Place, Glasgow, G1 2ER New York, USA: 16 West 22nd Street, 12th Floor, New York, NY 10010 More about Frank Australia: www.frankpr.com.au More about Frank UK: www.frankpr.it   NTC program recipient of Financial Literacy Australia 2015 National Award 2015-12-01T23:17:50Z ntc-program-recipient-of-financial-literacy-australia-2015-national-award The National Theatre for Children’s (NTC) financial literacy program Showdown at Two Bob Billabong, in partnership with Horizon Credit Union, has won a prestigious Small Business Award at the 2015 Financial Literacy Australia ceremony held at The Establishment in Sydney.   The Financial Literacy Australia Awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of organisations and individuals working to improve Australians’ financial literacy. The awards were established in 2012 to recognize and reward best practice in financial literacy across corporate Australia. Judged by an independent panel of industry experts, all nominations are considered based on criteria of delivery outcomes, sustainable benefits and measurable results.   The NTC program was delivered directly into schools across the NSW South Coast on behalf of Horizon Credit Union and included a fully produced, live educational theatre presentation along with integrated print and digital resources for every student to educate both children and their families about critical financial literacy subjects.   “We are delighted to receive this recognition for our work delivered on behalf of Horizon Credit Union.” said Tobias Benn, Managing Director of NTC. “This program reached over 4,000 students and their families and has left a long lasting impact by educating and impacting the future lives of these children. Thanks to Horizon Credit Union who has demonstrated corporate leadership in the area of financial literacy and by sponsoring the NTC program they have made a real difference throughout their communities.”   NTC delivers communication programs on behalf of our clients using a model of education and behavioural change via the school channel. In 2016, NTC and Horizon Credit Union will be touring the program again to a new group of schools across NSW.   About Horizon Credit Union Horizon Credit Union is the only truly local South Coast financial institution. It is in its 50th year of operation and has a branch network that spans the South Coast of NSW. It is a not-for-profit financial institution that does everything a bank can do. Horizon returns profits back to members in the form of competitive rates, fair fees and support in their communities. www.horizoncreditunion.com.au   About NTC In 1978, NTC dedicated itself to delivering entertaining and highly educational programs to positively motivate families, students and educators.  We inspire young people – and their families – to explore important and timely curricular subjects including: wise energy use, science, technology, engineering and maths, financial literacy, health and nutrition and environmental literacy, among others.  Originally focused on delivering its programs via live theatre, NTC is now an award-winning educational content provider whose repertoire includes print and digital curriculum and extracurricular events.  We have developed the art of teaching through educational story-telling into a science of its own, and are currently the largest in-school touring educational production company in the world. www.ntccorporate.com.au Queer Screen Promises Salty, Sweet & Sexy in Festival Teaser 2015-11-17T02:02:17Z queer-screen-promises-salty-sweet-sexy-in-festival-teaser 17 November 2015: The 23rd Mardi Gras Film Festival (Festival) from Queer Screen promises to set hearts beating and pulses racing with a raft of exciting Australian premieres, award winners and an Oscar contender announced in its teaser program today; tickets now on sale at queerscreen.org.au.   The Festival will open on Thursday 18 February with the Australian premiere of the sensual French film Summertime. Other Australian premieres to be screened include the hauntingly beautiful Thai Oscar entry for 2016 How to Win at Checkers (Every Time), Addicted to Fresno starring Natasha Lyonne, the captivating Venezuelan lesbian film Liz in September, and Coming In, a comedy from the director and star of gay classic Summer Storm.  Remembering the Man, a new documentary of the tragic tale of Australian lovers Timothy Conigrave and John Caleo, will make its Sydney debut at the Festival.   Running from 18 February to 3 March 2016 at Event Cinemas George Street and other venues, this year’s festival promises to deliver something for everyone.   “2016 is a universal festival and caters for everyone under the rainbow,” explains Festival Director Paul Struthers. “Film subjects range from athletes and dancers to local heroes and features straight, gay, lesbian, trans, and bi-sexual characters from across the world. Whatever genre you are into from lighthearted comedies to surreal horror we have it covered. It’s definitely our most wide-ranging and exciting festival yet”.   The Opening Night film Summertime, follows farm girl Delphine as she heads to the bright lights of Paris to create her own life during the dawn of 1970s activism in France. Screened recently at the highly esteemed Toronto International Film Festival, and winner of the Variety Piazza Grande Award at the Locarno International Film Festival, this sensual film will move everyone who sees it.   Further exploring the relationship between Australians Timothy Conigrave and John Caleo as detailed in Holding the Man, Remembering the Man is a bittersweet documentary featuring previously unseen footage of John Caleo and looks at Timothy’s life after John.  This film was the winner of Most Popular Documentary at the Adelaide Film Festival.   Genre fans won’t want to miss multi award winning Everlasting Love, Spain’s answer to Stranger in the Lake but even weirder. A winner at LA’s Outfest, this film is set in the woods in the wake of a grizzly murder, so why can’t the cruisers keep away?   The Thai entry for the 2016 Oscars, How to Win at Checkers (Every Time), is a stunning drama about a young boy who worries about losing his openly gay brother to the army draft. A compelling and beautiful film, which recently played at the Berlin International Film Festival, it’s easy to see why this was chosen to represent the country on the international stage.   Game Face is a must-see documentary exploring the lives of LGBT athletes. Featuring transgender lesbian MMA fighter Fallon Fox who competes in a less- than-trans-friendly environment and Terrence Clemens coming out as a college basketballer, this documentary brings us up close and personal with the athletes during their most challenging times.  Orange is the New Black’s Natasha Lyonne and Jamie Babbit re-join forces to bring us the comedy Addicted to Fresno that premiered at Sundance. Featuring sex and murder, the movie looks at how far you will go for sisterhood.  Coming In, a new comedy from the director and star of gay classic Summer Storm explores what happens when a hip gay hairdresser at the top of his game falls in love with a woman.   Documentarian Jack Walsh brings us a funny and frank look at the life of revolutionary choreographer, artist, filmmaker and feminist Yvonne Rainer as she goes through political, professional and personal struggles in Feeling are Facts: the Life of Yvonne Rainer.   The striking supermodel and actor Patricia Velásquez comes to the screen in the Venezuelan lesbian film Liz in September. Winner of the audience award at Miami’s queer film festival, this film is captivating and touchingly real.   Featuring some of the hottest sex scenes from any LGBTIQ film this year, Beautiful Something is a sexy and tender glimpse into life for the contemporary gay man as the stories of Brian a poet and Jim, an actor intertwine.   The 2016 Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen is supported by St George bank, The Star Sydney, Event Cinemas George Street, Screen NSW, ACON, Ovolo Hotels, Franck Provost and the Star Observer.   The full Festival program will be launched on Thursday 14 January. Tickets for the first 10 films are on sale now including flexi passes to 5 or 10 films. Please visit queerscreen.org.au to book or call (02) 9332 4938 or to become a Queer Screen member for discounted tickets and priority entry.   -ENDS- Note to Editors:  An exciting addition to the program will be announced by Mardi Gras on Thursday 19 Nov  Directors and actors from most films are available for interview  Screeners of most films are available for review and imagery is available for publication  Louise Nealon, CallidusPR   T: (02) 9283 4114/ 0403 569 177   E: louise@calliduspr.com  About Mardi Gras Film Festival: Now in its 23rd year, the Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen is one of Australia’s largest film festivals of any kind, and one of the top five queer film festivals in the world. It is highly regarded by filmmakers all over the world, and is the most important avenue for promoting gay and lesbian titles to distributors and exhibitors in Australia.  About Queer Screen: Queer Screen was established in 1993 as an independent organisation whose primary focus was to bring queer film and culture to Australian screens. Run by volunteers and a small staff, Queer Screen develops the annual Mardi Gras Film Festival and a number of other short film festivals as well as the LGBTIQ short film competition My Queer Career.   Pavarotti's 80th birthday tribute on Gold Coast on Nov 20 2015-11-13T03:49:26Z pavarotti-s-80th-birthday-tribute-on-gold-coast IN tribute to what would have been Pavarotti's 80th Birthday, Ten Tenors co-founder Roger Davy will bring his Broadway to Pavarotti show to the Gold Coast on November 20. The well-known Queensland tenor and Vavachi Entertainment director said he wanted to celebrate the legacy of the famous Italian operatic tenor Luciano Pavarotti, who was born on October 12, 1935, in Modena, Italy, and died on September 6, 2007, from pancreatic cancer. “Pavarotti was one of the finest tenors of the 20th century and an extraordinary man,” Mr Davy said. Broadway to Pavarotti will feature classic opera and musical theatre songs at the Quality Hotel Mermaid Waters. The show has had successful performances in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and on Mount Tamborine. It includes classic opera favourites from the Merry Widow, La Boheme, La Traviata and Rigoletto to the best of Broadway songs from shows like West Side Story, Les Miserables and Phantom of the Opera. Joining Mr Davy in the show will be international soprano Simone Nicole, an accomplished dancer, cabaret artist and opera singer; as well as Brisbane tenor Iain Henderson, who has sung with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra and was a soloist in the BBC’s The Dr Who Symphonic Spectacular. Mr Davy has sung with Opera Queensland, Opera Australia and in Germany and the UK over the past 25 years.  He was instrumental in establishing the Ten Tenors and formed his own company Vavachi Entertainment in 2003. The company’s main aim, apart from delighting audiences throughout Australia and Asia, is to be a launching pad for young talent.  Several of his students have gone on to successful careers nationally and internationally with such names as Andre Rieu. Broadway to Pavarotti is more than a recital of old favourites. The show has a plot linking the songs and revealing the stories behind them. Add to that, the light-hearted farce of the two tenors competing for the attention of the beautiful soprano Simone and you have plenty of laughs and musical excellence. A highlight of the night will be Mr Davy’s famous tribute to his all-time favourite - Pavarotti. Broadway to Pavarotti will be at the Quality Hotel Mermaid Waters, corner of Markeri Street and Sunshine Boulevarde, on November 20 from 7pm. Tickets are $75 for adults, which includes a two-course meal, show and 6 x 8 inch souvenir photo. To book, call 07 5572 2500 or visit www.mermaidwatershotel.com.au