A early Valentine’s Day celebration with a performance of Romeo & Juliet  by Esseential Theatre at Montalto Vineyard & Olive Grove on Sunday February 13 @ 5.30pm. 

This twilight performance of Shakespeare’s famous romantic tragedy will take place on the lawn in front of the restaurant, with the vineyard and rolling hills as the backdrop.  Once again Essential Theatre, who have done a brilliant job the past three years will entertain and delight us. Food available from the Piazza Café until the start of the show, wine available until end performance. BYO chair or rug.

When: Sunday 13 February @ 5.30pm

Where: Montalto Vineyard & Olive Grove

Cost: $45 – Performance only $140 – Sweethearts package for two: includes performance; a bottle of wine (your choice) from our Pennon Hill range or two glasses of our Montalto Cuvee; and a tasting platter to share

For further information contact:  Heidi Williams on P: 03 5989 8412 F: 03 5989 8417 E:



It’s an honour

We are delighted and honoured by the Australia Day announcement that Susan has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for services to the arts as a writer and publisher.

With this she joins the family honours of her late father Alan McCulloch who received the Order of Australia (AO) for services to the arts as well as an honorary Doctor of Laws, Melbourne University and the inaugural Australia Council Emeritus Medal.

We thank our friends and colleagues for their many warm congratulatory wishes.

Susan McCulloch, Gallery Gondwana, Alice Springs, September 2010. Image courtesy of Gallery Gondwana. 



REVIEW  January 14

For the last Performers on Deck (PoD) Meryl Leppard hit the switch and lit up the stage as a storyteller/singer/songwriter/muso who recently returned from a long residency in New York. Jardine Loya had some hard hitting rappoety that upped the pace and left you thinking; Mamma Sass (aka Gus and Lou Angwin) shook us up and rolled us along with their sassy blues numbers; The Boys from the Shed (aka Theo Paterakis and Rhys Jones) took us for a ride to the Buena Vista Social Club; Olive Soul Sister went a cappella; Steve played and sang some melting solo blues before Mary Jo showed us what the girl from Narooma is made of. 

The night was punctuated with raffles to raise funds for the Balnarring CFA. Gail Loveridge humoured and rallied the raffles to earn a sweet $1400.

Performers on Deck is happening again Fri Jan 28th at the Heritage Hotel Balnarring, Frankston Flinders Road. This PoD will be a fund raiser for the Flood Relief so bring along some spare cash and be in it to win some lovely prizes. This is about Aussies helping Aussies and enjoying the sounds of some local talent.  Mama Sass is shimmying again and more surprises in store to be sure.

If you are a “performer” come and show case what you have been creating in music or word. Kicks off 6pm. Contact Ree Liddell:


When: Saturday 29 January 12.00n – 5.00pm

What’s on: Musical performances from Marty Williams Project (Cousin Leonard) and Warrains – Tash Parker

Fairies – face painting – balloons – jumping castle

Where: Hickinbotham Winery, 194 Nepean Highway Dromana

for further information phone Alison: 03 5989 0538 or 0420 742 893 or Tiffany: 03 5983 2790 or 0419 672 611

Cost: $25 Family – $10 adult – $5 child

Mackenzie was born with Holoprosencephaly, where her brain did not divide into two hemispheres. She also hasglobal developmental delay and cerebral palsy. Mackenzierequires full assistance for all daily tasks, uses special chairs, and a standing frame. She also uses a customised walking frame which cost just under $5000 dollars, and this enables her to play alongside her siblings. This is just the beginning of her special needs. You can follow Mackenzie’s progress at



“LAYERS” is the title of Mornington’s Oak Hill Gallery latest exhibition  opening on January 29.  The exhibition will feature the work of 80 year old pastel artist, Margaret  Landvogt.   A vibrant and optimistic person, Margaret has always been in wonder of the world we live in and is inspired in a positive way by the layers of our geography and  the life cycles and characters of trees.   She sees them in a spiritual way, expressing life as individually as people do. Margaret’s pastels uplift the viewer’s thoughts to see what she sees …the magic , the harmony and beauty of trees and land.

Simultaneously, Oak Hill’s regular jewellery group with Marieke Treloar will be exhibiting their works 

Two other local artists, Fiona Wood and  Helen R. Nikolas will be exhibitng watercolours, acrylics and prints.

When:  29th January  – 23rd February Exhibition Opening Sunday 30th January from 2-4pm

Where:  100 Mornington- Tyabb Road , Mornington.   Oak Hill Gallery is on the Civic Reserve adjacent to The Mornington Regional Art Gallery and the Mornington Rose Garden.

The gallery is open Tuesday – Sunday inclusive from 11am – 4pm

for further information phone 5973 4299 or E mail :


A Mornington Peninsula Shire Fundraising Event for children and their families in support of flood victims in Queensland
Herald-Sun News


When: Sunday 30 January 2011 (Sunday week) 11am to 1pm

Where: Rosebud Memorial Hall

 Program: 11am to 11.30am local musicians will entertain the children

11.30am to 12.30pm a ‘Bollywood’ dancing event

12.30pm to 1pm local musicians will entertain the crowd

Face Painting and art and craft activities throughout the event from 11am to 1pm

CFA sausage sizzle from 11am to 1pm

For further information contact


Pot-Pourri Opera group with Greta Bradman

Creative Universe and Morning Star Estate proudly present


Imagine being taken to see your favourite shows and your most-loved songs from Opera to Broadway, in just one evening of entertainment… A spectacular setting…by the sea…under the stars featuring sensational Australian performers, Pot-Pourri and acclaimed soprano Greta Bradman (granddaughter of Sir Donald Bradman).

Be enchanted and entertained by the greatest hits of Pavarotti and The Three Tenors, Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, Chicago, Westside Story, Carmen, Madam Butterfly, Rigoletto, La Boheme, Lakme, The Pearl Fishers, Edith Piaf, Leonard Cohen, Frank Sinatra, IL DIVO, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, Ennio Morricone, Andrew Lloyd Webber and many more. Songs will include: Music of the Night, Nessun Dorma, The Prayer, Hallelujah, You Raise Me Up, Cabaret, All that Jazz, New York New York, My Way, Time to Say Goodbye, Memory, La Vie en Rose, \Amigos para siempre, The Flower Duet, Tonight, Some Enchanted Evening, The Pearl Fishers Duet.

This is a show for the whole family, proudly supporting the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. Pot-Pourri’s line-up is founders Tania de Jong AM and Jonathan Morton, husband and wife team Rebecca and Jon Bode, and talented pianist Rebecca Chambers. Recently named BT Publishing’s Australian Event Entertainer of the Year, fabulous Melbourne group Pot-Pourri has released 6 CDs and enchanted audiences around the world on over 40 international tours with their inspiring and unique sound, much-loved repertoire of opera, music theatre and song and their inimitable warmth and wit. Returned from international success in Asia, New Zealand and Europe, these talented artists hit those high C’s in Opera, belt out Broadway, seduce with song, dance up a storm, create magic and stir your soul!

The voices are inspired, the music is sublime and the production all you could wish for…a standing ovation!” Herald Sun “Pot-Pourri is unmissable entertainment… superbly talented.” The Press, Christchurch.  Soprano Greta Bradman is described as one of “Australia’s finest young singers” and as an “exceedingly intelligent and perceptive musician” (The Advertiser, 2009).

Do not miss a very special, romantic and fun night to remember under the stars on the Mornington Peninsula!

Pot-Pourri and Greta’s CDs will be available.

What to Bring: BYO picnic, chair or blanket (No bottles or alcohol) catering options available. Wine, coffee and a wide range of hot food stalls will be available on the day.  

When: Saturday, 12 February 2011 at 7:15pm

Where: @ Morning Star Estate, Mt Eliza

Tickets: Student/Child – $33.30 Group Bookings – $50.00* (Minimum 10 people) VIP Ticket – $130.00 (Includes 3 course meal, wine and reserved area – BOOK EARLY as limited places) Hamper Ticket – $95.00 (Includes 3 course hamper – must be pre-ordered at least 48 hours prior

Bookings:  Ticketmaster Call 136 100 or go to:

For details visit or email or

phone Victoria on  03 8679;


Skepsi Gallery

‘A fine passion’
With Anna Maas, Director of Skepsi Gallery, Melbourne
When: Tuesday 1 February 5.30pm for a 6pm start
Where: Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery bookings essential M $12 G $15

Anna Maas is an artist and ceramics expert with 25 professional years working in the arts sector. With a passion for contemporary ceramics, Anna will share her substantial knowledge and understanding of the burgeoning post WW2 Australian ceramics industry – which has, inevitably, been influenced by the artistic Boyd family.  Make the most of this opportunity to hear more about her thoughts and reflections on contemporary ceramics and future trends for this art form steeped in history.  Drinks and tapas will precede this early evening illustrated talk.

Young at Art 2011
A program for 0-5 year olds with Matteo the storyteller



Tuesday 1 February Clipperty clop
Tuesday 1 March Splish splash
Tuesday 5 April Little boxes
Tuesday 10 May Tap tap tap
Tuesday 7 June Sweet dreams
Tuesday 2 August Big rocks
Tuesday 6 September Going dotty
Tuesday 11 October Vroom vroom
Tuesday 8 November All a flutter
Tuesday 13 December Sail away

When: 10am-11am $4 for children (adults free)
Where: MPRG, bookings essential

Join Marvellous Matteo for a half hour session of hand clapping, feet stomping storytelling, music and art. Let your imagination run wild!  Afterwards, venture through the Gallery with Elisa.

Book now by contactacting the Gallery on 5975 4395 or email


Kaarin Fairfax

The Little Theatre Company, is the Mornington Peninsula’s newest Contemporary Performance Theatre Company and is run by Entertainment Industry Professionals with an aim to produce high quality work.

 My name is Kaarin Fairfax and I am the Artistic Director of The Little Theatre Company. I have been part of the entertainment industry for over 25 years and in 2009 made the decision to begin teaching some of the things I have learned.  We are well into our second year and with our major production Frankston Lights behind us, my sights are set on creating exciting and dynamic theatre for all ages.

The Little Theatre Company is dedicated to my father George Fairfax, John Truscott , Irene Mitchell and Brett Randall – the team that was The Little Theatre, which later became St. Martin’s Youth Arts Centre.

We offer opportunities for kids, teenagers and adults to be part of the collaborative ensemble; nurturing talents and skills, making  friends and developing an understanding of the ‘Unique Culture’ that is the Entertainment Industry.

For details on The Little Theatre Companies workshops and classes or for general visit

Term 1 Dates for 2011  February 15 – April 8

10 week Drama Class @ $150

The Little Drama Club 5-8 yr olds Tues 4.30-5.30

Lights Up 9-12 yr olds Weds 4.30-5.30

The TLC Ensemble 13 – 20 yr olds Tues 6.30-7.30

10 Week Dance Class $120/8 week $100/Single drop in class $15

Private one-on-one acting coaching available, suitable for VCE Drama and Theatre Studies programs.

For further information call Kaarin on 0412 723 093 between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday or email


An exhibition exploring the theme of water in Indigenous art with more than 40 vibrant paintings, barks, ochres, prints, fibre works and sculptures by 35 artists from central and western deserts, APY Lands, Arnhem Land, Qld, TSI and the Kimberley exploring the theme of water in Indigenous art.

Curated by Susan McCulloch and Emily McCulloch Childs. 

When: Opening drinks Saturday 22 Jan, 6pm.  Please join us for the Curators’ exhibition preview and talk Saturday 22 Jan, 5pm
Exhibition runs from January 16 – February 8. 

Curators’ talk Mythology, mark making and colour in Indigenous art.
Sunday Jan 23, 2.30 pm 

 Where: Salt Contemporary gallery 35 Hesse Street Queenscliff

(03) 5258 3988  Open daily during summer 11am-5pm 

Artworks depicted: Napuwarri Marawili/Larrakitj, Candy Nakamarra/Kepi Tjukurpa (Water Dreaming), Peter Girirrkirirr/Secret Waterholes (Detail), Samantha Hobson/Outwere reef, bright sunny day (Detail)


Hello friends and family, face and body artists extraordinaire, Oak Hill Gallery members, friends and audiences, five of us  from the ‘Dare Group’ have been painting  towards this exhibition for 18 months now.  I would like to invite you to come along .   The styles presented are greatly varied, inspired by landscapes both vast  and detailed,  real and imaginary .  All works in the exhibition are for sale.

When: The Exhibition Opens on the 3rd Feb at 6.30pm.

Where: Walker Street Gallery Dandenong

For further enquiries call Diane on 0416 126 962



 Don’t miss this special opportunity to meet Australia’s leading poet and one of the greatest contemporary poets writing in English.

 Hear Les Murray read from his new collection of poetry, Taller When Prone and speak about his writing practice. With characteristic grace and dexterity, the poems in Taller When Prone combine a mastery of form with a matchless ear for the Australian vernacular.

Copies of Taller When Prone will be available to purchase and have signed by Les Murray.


When: Tuesday 8 February, 6pm-8pm

Where:The Studio @ Peninsula Community Theatre Wilsons Road, Mornington

Tickets: $6 adults, $4 concession

Bookings and pre-payment essential: Mornington Library – 5950 1820

This exciting event will also introduce Peninsula Poet Andrea Lousie Thomas to local and visiting audiencesAndrea has been selected as the Shire’s ‘Poet in Residence’ from February 2011.  This project is a combined Shire Library Services and Australian Poetry ‘Cafe Poet’ Project initiative. 

A bit about Andrea:

Andrea Louise Thomas is a Canadian, Californian, Australian poet who writes and resides on the Mornington Peninsula. In 2010 she was a top ranked finalist in the Australian Poetry Slam State Final, the Overload Poetry Slam Final, as well as being a finalist in the Poetry Idol Final at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival.  She participated as the only woman on Team Australia in the first International Poetry Slam via Skype (versus Scotland). She appeared on the Red Lobster program on Channel 31 and was interviewed on SYN FM radio. She has had two poems published in the Paradise Anthology as well as several articles published in local magazines.  As part of the Poet in Residency Project  she will publish and release a chapbook of her poems.  Andrea has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Berkeley where she specialized in poetry and Shakespeare.  She also holds two teaching credentials from San Francisco State University in primary school teaching and secondary school English as well as teaching English as a second language in Tokyo, Japan for two years as part of a Japanese national teaching program.

She currently volunteers in the early years language program at Penbank School.


Where: Art Studio on Bentons Rd, Moorooduc, look for the green & orange flag by the fence, close to Moorooduc Hwy, behind Santa’s Place

When: Sunday 23rd January   10am – 4pm cost: $80    limited to 14 people

What you will learn: To make your own colour wheel, addressing values, complementaries, tints, chroma, temperature, balance, weight, triads & many more problems associated with colour

What to bring with you:  your enthusiasm, a palette, 1 canvas, acrylics ( red, blue, yellow, black, white) brushes and lunch

 For further information and bookings contact Margo on 5975 3616      0410 280 711

2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 2,400 times in 2010. That’s about 6 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 120 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 184 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 110mb. That’s about 4 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was May 6th with 111 views. The most popular post that day was Call for Entries $1500 AWARD EXHIBITION ‘Table Manners’.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for, artsonthepeninsula, eldering ensemble, tash parker, and simon monger.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Call for Entries $1500 AWARD EXHIBITION ‘Table Manners’ May 2010




Welcome to the Mornington Peninsula Shire’s arts blog March 2010


Eldering Ensemble August 2010
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Wanted: Street Performers & Buskers for a new Sorrento Festival August 2010