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SYDNEY

Theatre Review: The Golden Age - Wharf 1 Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company (Performances Until February 20th)

Two young men explore the Tasmanian wilderness in their youth. Francis, a young engineer and his friend Peter, a geologist, have bright futures ahead of them. But when they stumble upon a tribe of outcasts deep in the bush, they enjoy a moment of curious joy before despair.

Sydney Festival Review: The Events - Granville Town Hall

In a time where our discussion is stilted, mediated and increasingly online, community engagement has formed a central aspect of contemporary theatre. The facilities to congregate and share stories are rare, particularly in outer urban areas or those where many cultures co-exist separately. While Reclaim Australia toots it’s white power horn, there’s a deeper issue at play; one where the multicultural heart of our city is fractured, and the places to bond and share new customs is fraught with politics or simple fear.

Spotlight on Meriton Festival Village 2016 - Hyde Park (Sydney)

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Sydney Festival is back for their huge 40th year anniversary, once again propping up their central hub in the leafy surrounds of Hyde Park, this year presenting a re-brand of sorts as what was once known as Sydney Festival Village now becomes Meriton Festival Village. Not much has changed aside from the name though, and thankfully last year's spacious layout is recreating almost exactly, with a few changes here and there, and an even bigger focus on providing families with a tempting all-day pop-up bursting with entertainment and hospitality.

Arts Review: Circus Oz - Big Top at Entertainment Quarter, Sydney (Performances until January 24th)

Circus Oz has become an Australian institution in its 37 years of performing around the world. One of the world’s first ‘contemporary’ circus’ - presenting shows without animals in more artistic settings – the group is partly responsible for many of the current crop of art circus troupes we’re familiar with today. But Wait.. There’s More sees the gang return to Australia after much of 2015 overseas and finally bringing their rock ‘n’ roll approach back to Sydney audiences.

Sunrise Asian - Elizabeth Bay (Sydney)

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Widely referred to as a "Chef's Secret", Sunrise Asian is a name well known amongst the A-list of Australia's kitchen-heads; from Neil Perry to Peter Gilmore, some of the country's finest have been regulars to Fiat Malaniyom's business for years, relying on him and his team to source hard-to-find produce and rare native ingredients from around Australia, many of which have been used to create some stand-out dishes at restaurants like Quay and Rockpool. It then comes to no surprise that Sunrise Asian's brand new stand-alone restaurant in Elizabeth Bay is attracting all kinds of attention from food lovers across Sydney, doubling as a store for fresh Asian groceries, pastries, and various other produce.

Miss Peaches (New Menu, Summer 2015) - Newtown (Sydney)

Through a narrow door and up some stairs nearby The Marlborough Hotel is the passage through to Miss Peaches. There is a cool breeze blowing in and sitting high above one of Newtown’s busiest streets has afforded me the perfect view to people watch. The night my guest and I dined was a Thursday night which means the crowd pouring in are here for one thing, Roadhouse Rockabilly Night.

Mach2 - Sydney International Airport T1

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Long-established as an Italian dining institution, Sydney's Machiavelli now enjoys an extended reach throughout the city, with their second sister restaurant, another incarnation of Mach2, propped up right before customs at Sydney International Airport T1. It's part of the re-focused dining options at airports around Australia, bringing in more reliable and popular outlets to up the standard of airport dining. Turning to a brand such as Machiavelli and giving them a platform to showcase their Italian food to inbound and outbound travelers was a smart move by Airport Retail Enterprises, who have been rolling out a bunch of new food options lately and were responsible in bringing MoVida to Sydney Domestic T2 a few years ago.

Taste of Shanghai - World Square (Sydney)

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The various branches of Taste of Shanghai around Sydney are consistently sticking to the standard of inexpensive, good quality Shanghai cuisine, but also bringing in influences from various other Chinese cuisines to offer a comprehensive, share-focused dining experience. Their newest outlet is on the ground floor of World Square, adding greatly to the improved dining options at the central Sydney hub, and bringing the brand its first CBD location.

Theatre Review: The Importance of Being Earnest - Bella Vista Farm, Sydney (Performances through Dec 30th)

Algernon and John sit on the couch in deep discussion. Photo: Marnya Rothe.

Sport for Jove’s The Importance of Being Earnest opens with perhaps one of the most perfectly choreographed scenes in theatre. Staged within an elaborate house and performed to "Le amour est un oiseux rebelle" from George Bizet’s opera Carmen, we see Algernon Moncrieff (Aaron Tsindos) after a long night of revelry, emerge and move about his house in a daze. His butler Lane (James Lugton) masterfully pre-empts his every move, catching falling glasses and cleaning up around him, perfectly synchronised to the classic tune. And so begins the Oscar Wilde tale of fantasy and farce in Victorian England.

Passiontree - Chatswood (Sydney)

Gigantic melon bingsoos, honey bread, and hot chocolate? Yes, please! Dessert-lovers will certainly get a kick out of Passiontree’s summer menu. Located conveniently at Chatswood Interchange, the dessert bar satisfies all sugar cravings.

Donny’s Bar - Manly (Sydney)

Manly continues its march into Sydney’s top food destinations in no small part due to venues like Donny’s Bar. Executive chef Carlos Guzman (ex-Porteño) has crafted a smart and creative menu with deft nudges in both the food and drink to test (and reward) palates.

Eating with the AU: Le Pub's new menu - CBD (Sydney)

Sydney loves a good food trend. That’s why the focus on tradition at Le Pub is so refreshing. From its sultry Paris bistro basement setting to its dishes that are some of the mainstays of French cuisine the restaurant offers enjoyment in the tried and tested prepared with excellence.

Sydney Pop-Up: Grey Goose's Salon at Vine - Double Bay

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Double Bay's Vine paints a pretty picture on most days with an Eastern suburban feel against a soothing evening backdrop, but when paired with a French inspired pop-up bar, the vibe is taken to the next level just as the sun begins to set. I scored an early invite to the Grey Goose's Salon at Vine pop-up, featuring the ultimate canapés and Grey Goose cocktails set against a French Riviera-inspired décor, previewing the temporary bar that will be at the restaurant until January 31st 2016.

Chefs Gallery's new menu and art concept - CBD (Sydney)

With a new art gallery concept and a new menu, Chefs Gallery is celebrating the art of Chinese cuisine. All venues have been decked out with collectable Chinese contemporary art, including paintings, sculptures, and ceramics. All the art is for sale.

Arts Review: Miss Universal by Atlanta Eke - Chunky Move Studios, Melbourne (Performances to December 12th)

One of the beautiful things about contemporary dance is its ability to transcend mediums not often explored by mainstream dance disciplines. However, when it comes down to it, there does need to be a message that isn’t clouded by obscurity and organic motive.