LOST AND FOUND Volume 2 Issue 3
Guest Editor, Clare Bowditch
Clare Bowditch is a Melbourne girl, mother of three, singer, guitarist and committed red head. With her partner Marty Brown and their band the Feeding Set, Clare released the ARIA award-winning What Was Left in 2005. After welcoming twins earlier this year, Clare and Marty are focusing on a new album. Apart from supervising three mini-percussionists, writing songs and eating Japanese, Clare like the cafes of Northcote, The Goon Show and the black tie fashions of Akira.
ARTS / CULTURE
For 30 years after its establishment in 1839, the Melbourne Athenaeum Theatre was known as The Mechanics’ Institute, which sounds alarmingly like a late ’80s industrial band. The Athenaeum Library has been hidden away on the first floor all that time, offering an enormous selection of books for its members – and the perfect escape from the crowds just outside.
The library’s current Creative Milestones exhibition is pure wish-fulfilment. It takes you through the Athenaeum’s rich history – Al Jolson’s original talkie The Jazz Singer in 1929, the first performance of The Messiah in Victoria and Mark Twain’s ‘Holiday Lecture’ in 1895. The Creative Milestones competition offers prizes including a one-year membership to the library. To enter, grab a voting slip and declare which Athenaeum event you’d most like to have attended.
The Melbourne Athenaeum Creative Milestones Exhibition, until Wednesday August 15, Athenaeum Library, Level 1, 188 Collins Street, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9650 3100
Clare Bowditch – Arts/Culture
I sneak off to the theatre as much as I can. As a long-term Goon Show devotee, words cannot explain my delight over the MTC’s wonderful Ying Tong. I don’t know how they pull it off – mind-bogglingly brilliant. At the top of my current “to-see” list is Lally Katz’s The Eisteddfod, at the Malthouse in July, which co-stars perhaps my favourite Australian actor, Katherine Tonkin. Ying Tong, until July 28. Playhouse Theatre, the Arts Centre, 100 St Kilda Road, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9281 8000
The Eisteddfod, until July 29. Malthouse Theatre, 113 Sturt Street, Southbank, tel: (03) 9685 5111
Empires can be dangerous things, rife with skulduggery and prone to collapse – let us not forget those Romans. However Leopold’s Empire is a glorious exception. The home of Melbourne menswear label Leopold, this empire is based on a solid foundation of luxurious fabrics, meticulous tailoring and edgy prints for the young gentleman about town. Since Leopold launched in 2004, the label has become justifiably famous for its exquisite cashmere and Italian wool knits. The designers are now onto their third season of limited-edition sunglasses in collaboration with Polaroid. This sleek little store in City Square – all dark-stained timber and exposed concrete – also stocks leather boots and belts so beautiful they could make a grown man weep.
Leopold’s Empire, 1 City Square, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9662 9095
Clare Bowditch – Fashion
In October last year I rang a friend to lament the lack of black-tie fashion options for heavily pregnant women folk. My friend told me to stop whinging and get my arse over to the GPO in Bourke Street. Off I waddled and discovered the designs of Mr Akira, who is clearly a lover of all women. I think of him as a very understanding man (it’s all in the designs). In Westgarth/Northcote, I love LUPA, Hummingbird 60 and Subterranean.
Akira, Shop F04, Level 1, Melbourne’s GPO, cnr Bourke and Elizabeth streets, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9662 5003
LUPA, 55 High Street, Northcote, tel: (03) 9481 1614
Hummingbird 60, 60 High Street, Northcote, tel: (03) 94866778
Subterranean, 227 High Street, Northcote, tel: (03) 9481 2399
If you’re sitting two-thirds of the way through the latest multi-million dollar blockbuster and thinking all those explosions seem so underwhelming, remember that the 56th Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) isn’t far away. For 19 days, the city will stop to absorb an influx of local and international cinema – assembled with a fresh eye by new MIFF Executive Director, Richard Moore.
Much of the programming is still top-secret, but already announced are new regional focus programs for African and Israeli cinema; more from the regular ‘Accelerator’ initiative featuring upcoming Australian and New Zealand filmmakers; a program called ‘New Gen’ that’s especially designed to be suitable for children; and Michael Moore’s new scathing documentary Sicko for the opening night bash.
56th Melbourne International Film Festival, Wednesday July 25 – Sunday August 12. Tickets available online or at the festival hub from Saturday 14 July: the Forum Theatre, cnr Flinders and Russell streets, Melbourne. For ticket information tel: (03) 9417 2011
The Melbourne Design Market could be the design world’s answer to the Saint Jeromes Laneway Festival. Swapping laneway for carpark and amps for lamps, this one-day Melbourne Design Festival event at Fed Square boasts a 50-strong lineup spanning industrial design, graphic design, jewellery and fashion design. Make sure you check out the local acts including graphic designers Tin & Ed for Zaishu, fashion filmophiles Alpha 60 and ‘teatowelologist’ Abi Crompton representing Third Drawer Down. Entry is free. You can leave the earplugs at home.
Melbourne Design Market, 10am–5pm, Sunday July 8, Federation Square under cover car park, enter via Riverside Walk or Russell Street, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9654 6335
CAFES / DINING
Crossley Street has everything you could want in an urban byway: an eye for design, a love of high fashion and a global palate. Two gastronomic greats whetting the street’s appetite are Gingerboy and Becco. Teague Ezard fired up Melbourne’s love for Southeast Asia when he opened Gingerboy last year. Blue swimmer crab wontons and lemongrass cocktails are trademarks of the achingly cool hawker-style venture, complete with fairy-light studded walls and a black bamboo finish. The only similarity you’ll find next door at Becco is in the chilli. Serving Italy’s best with a Sicilian twist, chilli dusted calamari plays entrée to spaghettini vongole. For dessert, try an apple custard bombolini or crack out the Campari upstairs at the Bellavista Social Club.
Clare Bowditch – Cafes/Dining
For lunch, Marty and I tend to appreciate slow-cooked, European-influenced meals (old staples made new, that kind of thing). Eggs, special beans, good quality bread and cheese… If this is your type of lunch, try these treats: Pancetta-wrapped baked eggs with fetta at Northcote’s Palomino (grab a raspberry smoothie too); “Henry’s Beans” at Brunswick’s A Minor Place; a home-made sausage roll at CERES Environment Park. In the city? We still, after all these years, favour the unchangeable Pellegrini’s.
Palomino, 236 High Street, Northcote, (03) 9481 0699
A Minor Place, 103 Albion Street, Brunswick, tel: (03) 9384 3131
CERES, cnr Roberts and Stewart streets, Brunswick East,
tel: (03) 9387 2609
Pellegrini’s, 66 Bourke Street, Melbourne, tel: (03) 9662 1885
When mining for jewels in Melbourne’s network of drink caverns, start in the city’s alleyways. This is nightspot territory, and home to two musical treasures; Cherry and Roxanne Parlour. Both venues present live acts in stylish bar rooms (Cherry the downstairs rock den and Roxanne the upstairs pop scene). Franklin Street’s Miss Libertine is another top bar / venue crossover that’s cool without steely fashion sense. All are perfect for long nights out of the cold.
Clare Bowditch – Nightlife
My local is the Northcote Social Club; it’s booked by the same people who run the Corner Hotel and it is without doubt one of the brightest stars in the sky of “Good Places Where Good Bands Play”. Bar 303 next door is also a total winner of an establishment. In the city, I often find myself wrapped up in the gothic drama that is Flinders Street’s Forum Theatre. When I was teenager, didn’t it used to be a Christian drop-in coffee-house? Now, it’s all about the music.
Northcote Social Club, 301 High Street, Northcote,
tel: (03) 9489 3917
Bar 303, 303 High Street, Northcote, tel: (03) 9482 4577
Forum Theatre, cnr Russell and Flinders streets, Melbourne,
tel: (03) 9299 9700
The everyday fashion parade at Melbourne’s tram and train stops has been upped a notch or two recently. Why? Because the introduction of Metlink / Connex SMS timetable services means that no-one’s doing the last-minute public transport dash anymore. They’re checking arrival times on their mobile phones and sauntering to stations and tram stops, Manolos intact.
Connex Melbourne’s new SMS Timetable service allows 24-hour access to up-to-date train timetables via text message. Instructions are available online or by texting the word CONNEX to 197 26669. Metlink’s tramTRACKER service lets you know when your tram is going to arrive via landline, mobile call or SMS. Visit metlink for details. Then splash out on some spike heels.