All posts by Denver Mottau

Denver’s passion for music, cinema and the arts began at an early age when accompanying his grandmother in her rounds of the entertainment circuits - gaining exposure to Hollywood’s Broadway musicals. This education continued throughout his childhood as the heart-felt melodies of yester-year, and the fantasy of the Golden Years of Hollywood embraced our lives. Choosing a pathway that incorporated all aspects of Sydney lifestyle, Denver was able to make inroads with a variety of independent newspapers and publications to write about subjects of community interest. Over time, he had published a good many front-page stories, helping to overturn political decisions and make an impact on the local scene. What he has enjoyed most is researching areas of health and fitness, music, food and fashion to try and understand what excites the average Sydneysider in their lifestyle and interests. It becomes an on-going avenue of discovery, one that provides great ammunition for stories. Meanwhile, life goes on and the stage is set for reviewing the creativity in visual and performing arts. The challenge is ever present and the results most fulfilling!


What began as a protest march in 1978 has over time grown into one of the most talked about and colourful annual celebrations of Mardi Gras pride in Sydney.

Thousands of spectators will line the streets and buildings of the parade route on Saturday 29 February 2020 to cheer-on the mesmerising groups and floats that make up this iconic, and high-
energy spectacle, marching and dancing their way through Oxford Street Darlinghurst. Continue reading SYDNEY GAY AND LESBIAN MARDI GRAS 2020


Well known French entertainer Milko Foucault – Larche has added a fresh approach to the Aznavour Catalogue, teaming up with internationally acclaimed classical musicians to provide a new take on some of the amazing songs of music legend Charles Aznavour in a totally unique musical experience where Classical meets French Popular music.

Milko has drawn from the Aznavour collections to carefully curate this spectacular musical event to be held at Club Five Dock this Sunday.

Classical guitarist Giuseppe Zangari and Violinist Victoria Jacono bring their expertise to this new production accompanied by Stephen Malcolm Brown on Piano & Special Guest Cabaret Performer Rikelle Brown.

This is Milko’s second project for the year following an earlier show Piaf & Aznavour – Back in Time.

AZNAVOUR in a Classical Sense commences at 2.30 pm on Sunday 13 October 2019 at Club Five Dock, 66 Great North Road, Five Dock.

Price: $27 Bookings: Sticky Tickets 

All tickets sold are general admission.



Sydney’s annual 14 km road race attracted over 80,000 people this year as they braved the cool conditions to participate in the largest fun run of its kind in the world. 

The gruelling course from Hyde Park to Bondi Beach posed a challenge for the serious competitors and a fun day out for others who enjoyed the wonderful atmosphere of the race along the route. 

There was a strong sense of community in this event as thousands of spectators cheered-on and encouraged the runners, walkers and joggers as they made their way through the eastern suburbs of Sydney.  DJ’s and jazz bands, families and kids lined the route with entertainment, water and refreshments to make this a very special outdoor activity for Sydneysiders.

Harry Summers won this race for the third time, finishing at his personal best in 40.05 while Tara Palm was the first woman over the line at 47.11. Jake Lappin won first place in the elite Wheelchair category.

The course record of 40.02 is held by Steve Moneghetti set in 1991. Susie Powers still hangs on to the women’s title at 45.08 in 2001.

CITY2SURF is an iconic race that has grown in popularity with runners supporting over 1000 charities to help those in need. The organisers do a terrific job in controlling this large-scale activity – starting runners at staggered times based on their previous running time or early entry. 

The fun element of the race is where people from all walks of life, mass together and enjoy a big day out celebrating an event that encourages a healthy lifestyle in mid-Winter. Starting off with heavy clothes in freezing conditions, runners usually end up peeling them off as they struggle up Heartbreak Hill, the half-way mark of the race. At the finish line in Bondi Beach you show a sigh of relief having completed 14 km – hot, exhausted and ready to enjoy a well-earned lunch.

Pics by Denver Mottau





Australian artist David Hinchliffe’s solo exhibition opened in Sydney early this week showcasing his brilliant new works consisting of large-scale panoramic scenes of Sydney Harbour, local and international streetscapes and the perspectives of everyday life. 

David travels the globe capturing the essence and beauty of cities around the world in its many varied forms. Using his contemporary impressionist style, he creates an uplifting bold colour palette of city landscapes with the movement of light, shadows and shapes strongly influencing his feel and perception of the vibrancy and atmosphere within that urban environment.

In fact, David admits that the act of painting requires enormous concentration and focus to achieve the creativity that works for him.  Continue reading PANORAMA BY DAVID HINCHLIFFE @ WENTWORTH GALLERIES


Anthony Lister, a Brisbane artist who staged a one-night only art installation at the heart of Kings Cross ten years ago, did the same again – this time coming back with a vengeance to add colour and life to this one-time bustling entertainment precinct. 

Lister’s latest exhibition `Culture is Over’ opened on Wednesday July 17 at the old Porky’s entertainment venue in Darlinghurst Road Kings Cross to packed audiences. The abandoned nightclub was cleaned up for the pop-up art installations and restored temporarily to its former glory to accommodate a mix of paintings, sculptures and lighting on display.  The queue to get-in was long – due to the outstanding support for this event, but with security guards on duty and excellent catering by Fishbowl, the evening became a breeze.

In returning to Sydney having toured around the world creating his type of public artworks, the artist was somewhat dismayed at the post-lockout laws embracing the character of this suburb. Taking the initiative to strike a chord where he left-off a decade ago, Lister put-together this amazing show inviting Sydney to his trip down memory lane.

Many Sydneysiders share his beliefs and look forward to seeing this iconic suburbia experience a new lease in life in the not too distant future.

(All pics by Denver Mottau)


For one last time, thousands of Australians of every description braved the cold weather to say farewell to their favourite PM. Those who could not get tickets, settled on at the steps of the Sydney Opera House and watched the Memorial service on the big screen outside. Hawke had fulfilled his mission to bring-together many Australians under his unique style of leadership. Success was sweet, and his legacy assured. They came to say a final goodbye and offer thanks to a well loved national icon.

As the Sydney symphony orchestra began to play Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus, the screen come alive with a video footage of Hawke conducting the same piece (recorded at his 80th Birthday) and now, at his own memorial at the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall.


The Australian Fashion Industry’s biggest names were there in full force to cover the most talked about event in the fashion calendar. The launch of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Sunday May 12 in Hickson road, `The Rocks’ in Sydney.

Iconic fashion label Aje opened the show in style using the spectacular backdrop of the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House to highlight their collections. A week-long schedule of runway shows followed with some notable and rising fashion talents strutting their stuff off site, as well as the catwalk hub at Carriageworks.

Although the number of shows were reduced for various reasons, the quality and presentation has taken quantum leaps. Now in its 24th year, Australian Fashion Week creates a platform for emerging designers as well as established brands to have access to a global audience of buyers, press and consumers to showcase their Resort 20 Collections, generate sales and grow their business with the ongoing support of the NSW Government to reinforce Sydney as a global fashion capital. Continue reading SYDNEY’S MERCEDES-BENZ FASHION WEEK 2019


The photo above is of Fiona Lowry with her subject and behind them is her actual painting, The title of the painting is – I dream in my dream all the dreams of the other dreamers . 2014. Acrylic on canvas. Fiona Lowry won the Sir John Sullivan Prize in 2014. Her painting is held in the collection of Dr Dick Quan Sydney and is currently on view at the National Art School, Darlinghurst in its Queer Contemporary gallery.

The week has been a fun-filled and colourful  one for the LGBTQI community, family and friends as they prepare for the centrepiece of their celebration, Sydney’s Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade on Saturday 2 March 2019.

Unlike any other celebration in Sydney, the iconic Parade is the most talked about and admired for its satirical takes on every aspect of controversy, be it political, social, religious or discriminatory.  This year’s  theme is Fearless – much about  living freely in the face of fear to combat all forms of discrimination.
The many bold and outrageous floats that go to make up this parade is the reason why so many people line the streets to witness this marvellous spectacle of colour and imagination. A stand-out demonstration of LGBTQI creativity personified!
All photos by Denver Mottau


COUNTING & CRACKING is a Sri Lankan story made into a powerful stage play about a family’s journey to remain united across countries, and across generations following a long-term civil war that claimed the lives of over 100,000 people.

It is an emotional tale about a family torn apart by the war, going back and forth in time to tell this story using an international cast of 16 actors from 6 countries playing four generations of a family. The play is performed in six languages and translated simultaneously.

Director Eamon Flack took up the challenge to work with playwright Shakthi Shakthidharan over a period of 5 years to make this production possible.

Shakthi researched the story of his Sri Lankan great grandfather and went to great pains to discover the truth about what really happened there over time. He eventually found out what brought his family to Australia and gradually began to grasp his own history in the making. The information was invaluable in piecing-together his roots, and developing this into a realistic story about coming together, and breaking apart. Continue reading COUNTING AND CRACKING @ SYDNEY TOWN HALL


Acclaimed Sculptor Jane Dawson with a glass of champagne leaning against her sculpture of the native bird, the Emu.

Australian sculptor, Jane Dawson brings birds, animals and human figures to life in her beautifully made and finely executed sculpture exhibition at Maunsell Wickes gallery in Paddington.

Over time, Jane has found the point of balance in her sculptures, capturing the `bush spirit’ and images of the various species that roam the globe in a well-defined array of bronze and copper art
pieces that impress.

Here is Dawson’s take on animals, man and nature, explicitly created as a compelling work of art with an integrity all its own. Continue reading BIRDS AND ANIMALS IN BRONZE : A NEW EXHIBITION BY JANE DAWSON


The crème of Australia’s fashion-elite attended the 2018 Fashion Laureate Awards ceremony recently to honour individuals who have made a significant contribution to the growth, development and global promotion of this country’s fashion industry.

Designers, models and industry professionals graced the Australian Fashion Laureate red carpet at the State Theatre in Sydney to celebrate the 11th year of this gala event hosted by international supermodel Georgia Fowler and celebrated Aussie comedian Ash Williams.

It was a night to reflect on the achievements in Australian Fashion and acknowledge the outstanding accomplishments by individuals in different categories. Continue reading FASHION STARS HONOURED @ 2018 FASHION LAUREATE AWARDS



Hollywood actor Charlie Sheen made an appearance in Melbourne and Sydney recently on a popular speaking tour of Australia. Some Sydney fans paid as much as $1500 for a VIP Meet & Greet ticket to connect with the former Two and A Half Men star who holds a strong fan-base in Australia.

An Evening with Charlie Sheen hosted by Richard Wilkins gave Sydney audiences an insight into the actor’s career as he took them through some of the defining moments in the making of movies such as Platoon, Wall St, Young Guns, Major League and Hotshots. Sheen discussed his multiple roles as his career took shape as a youngster in Hollywood. Continue reading CHARLIE SHEEN IN SYDNEY


Charlie Sheen, one of Hollywood’s most unique and colourful characters is in Australia to talk about his interesting, but controversial life.  He will take over Melbourne’s MCEC on Saturday 3rd November before coming to Sydney to entertain audiences at ICC Darling Harbour on Sunday 4th November 2018.

Best known for his eight-year stint with the long-running sitcom Two and A Half Men, Sheen made his mark, and his rise to fame in a role that ideally suited his personality and acting skills. At the height of his career in 2010, Charlie Sheen became the world’s highest paid Television actor earning $1.8 million an episode.

However, in 2011 he was fired from the show after making derogatory comments about the show’s creator Chuck Lorre. From then onwards, it was a downhill plunge for the actor who somehow lost control of his life. Continue reading ARE YOU READY FOR AN EVENING WITH CHARLIE SHEEN?


Archibald Prize  winner Fiona Lowry’s intrigue with the Australian bush and the dark secrets it holds, along with the choice of her subject matter – vulnerable naked bodies airbrushed to form part of her aesthetic trademark once again becomes the nucleus of her creative efforts in producing a dreamscape of fantasy in a landscaped setting.

Here we have an artist who uses a skilled technique of airbrushing with a restricted palette of soft pastel colours to register her unique style that resonates with a dual paranoia of sensuality and menace. Often, her subjects appear to be falling over each other in a state of confusion or intimacy. Continue reading FIONA LOWRY : THE TIES THAT BIND


Master filmmaker Pantelis Voulgaris kicked off this year’s 12-day Festival with the heart-rending drama THE LAST NOTE, an epic chronicle of one of the most significant moments of modern Greek history – the tragedy and brutality of Nazi occupation in Greece.

The film recounts the lead-up to the mass execution of 200 Greek prisoners of war in Chaidari concentration camp in retaliation to a Greek resistance ambush in Laconia claiming the life of a high-ranking German official and his escorts.

Based on the final note of one of its victims, this remarkable film portrays the dignity of men in the face of death, their companionship and loyalty. It depicts Greek tradition in keeping alive resilient spirits through song and dance, heroism and courage.

Andreas Konstantinou’s standout performance and Voulgaris’ expert direction THE LAST NOTE  was indeed an excellent introduction for Opening Night at Palace Cinemas, Norton Street on Tuesday 9 October 2018 and will run until 21 October 2018.

The Festival will showcase the unique perspectives and talents of modern Greek storytellers.  With 16 films including new offerings and old favourites, the Festival will screen at Leichhardt’s Palace Norton Street Cinema and Palace Central Sydney.

“We’re so pleased to celebrate 25 years of incredible Greek cinema,” says Festival Chair, Nia Karteris. “The talent in Greece is so rich and vibrant, and that’s really reflected in the quality of films we have in the program. There’s something in here for everyone—from the goofy, the dark, and the heart-wrenching.”

See the whole program and book at



Featured image – People’s Choice  and Sofala Cottage residency award winner Justine Muller.

The $30,000 national acquisitive prize for a painting inspired by the Australian landscape was announced at Menzies Art Brands in Kensington last Monday night. Sponsored by Marlene Antico, and now in its 15th year, the exhibition of finalists and prize presentations took place on the night.

With over 1200 entries received, this year’s judges, Katrina Cashman, Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran and Tony Costa reflected on the cultural and professional significance of the entries in a contemporary art context. Continue reading PADDINGTON ART PRIZE 2018


Sydney celebrated its annual 14 km road-running event last Sunday with close to 80,000 entrants participating in what was regarded by many as the world’s largest fun-run.

It was a big day out for Sydneysiders who either joined the serious competitors in testing their endurance, or choose to walk the distance pushing prams or revelling in fancy dress.

This is one community event where the spectators offer every encouragement to participants both young and old, cheering-them-on and making it a very special outdoor activity to be enjoyed by all. Truly, a genuine sense of community was felt all-around. Continue reading CITY2SURF 2018 : SYDNEY CELEBRATES ANOTHER GREAT FUN RUN


Award winning photographer Matt Irwin’s love and vision of Sydney prompted him to visually document the evolution of Sydney into the city it has become – one of the most iconic cities in the world.

From 1992 he photographed Sydney and watched it grow and change, capturing the evolution of its progress through his lens.

According to Matt, much of our impression of the world is through our eyes. What we can see and feel. Sydney is a visual feast – It truly is a photographer’s dreamscape. It offers rugged geography, globally recognised icons and street-level authenticity – all encapsulated together with good weather conditions and a life so well lived.

The goal of Irwin’s book was to capture all these elements. His photographic adventure spanning 25 years in the making is a curated collection of the epic to the hidden, from the natural to the built, from every day to the one-off. Continue reading BOOK LAUNCH AND EXHIBITION : MATT IRWIN’S ‘SYDNEY : A LOVE AFFAIR’


TURNING HEADS is a playful and satirical glimpse at life, skilfully created by Caroline Gibbes through her art. Working with clay and bright glassy glazes, Gibbes’ takes us on a whimsical journey showcasing her unique and authentic approach to ceramics. This, her first solo exhibition of hand-built ceramics, highlights a dynamic and sophisticated style that stands-out and commands your attention.

Caroline’s head turning characters are a manifestation of her thoughts and feelings, literally exploding out of her head and hands to turn-out the works on display. Continue reading CAROLINE GIBBES ‘TURNING HEADS’ @ THE ARTHOUSE GALLERY


Further to the nominations announced on 18 June by the industry group Live Performance Australia, the presentation of this year’s Helpmann Awards were spread over two separate evenings.

Act 1 on Sunday 15 July at Sydney Town Hall was the curtain raiser acknowledging the achievements of Australia’s best creative and design artists who work behind the scenes in support roles. The Awards are a celebration of Australia’s live performance industry recognising excellence across a range of categories including musicals, comedy and cabaret, opera, dance, classical music, theatre and ballet. The 20 awards announced at the Helpmann Awards Act 1 on Sunday complements the dynamic performing arts talent fiercely competitive in a thriving industry.

The Town Hall celebration on Sunday was a cocktail gathering hosted by Rhonda Roberts and Michael Lynch. The live performances for the night included Monkey Baa Theatre Company, the Sydney Youth Orchestra Quartet, Georgina Hopson and opera duo Andrew Jones and Jenny Liu. Continue reading HELPMANN AWARDS 2018


This image: David Atkins, Artistic Director of the upcoming Helpmann Awards.                           Featured image: Matt Lee, Kelley Abbey, David Atkins, Maggie Dence and Robert Grubb at the announcement of this years’ Helpmann Awards nominees. Pics by Denver Mottau.

On Monday night, the industry group Live Performance Australia (LPA) announced the nominees in the 42 categories of the Helpmann Awards. The Awards are accolades for live entertainment and performing arts in Australia recognising achievement and excellence across a range of live performance sectors including musicals, comedy, opera and classical music, theatre, ballet, dance and physical theatre, presentations for children, regional touring and cabaret.

The winner of the Best Special Event Award, already announced, has gone to the Melbourne International Arts Festival for its production of Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music.

This year, the Sydney Theatre Company (STC) dominated the Theatre categories with 27 nominations. Hugo Weaving and his son Harry Greenwood were recognised for separate STC shows while David Campbell was nominated for best actor in a musical for his role as Bobby Darin in Dream Lover, and again for Assassins now playing at the Opera House.

The musical remake of Muriel’s Wedding received 11 nominations including best musical, best new Australian work, best original score, best director and best female actor in a musical. There is strong competition across categories with Hamlet and Bennelong also scoring many a nomination. Locally created music and dance work seem to have a much- anticipated edge with this year’s awards. Continue reading HELPMANN AWARDS NOMINATIONS FOR 2018 ANNOUNCED


As the cream of international and local fashion experts flocked to Sydney to experience yet another fashion extravaganza of lavish runway shows during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA), just how did our prolific designers meet the task of showcasing to the world, the best of our homegrown talent and top labels.

There were some 40 runway shows in 4 ½ days of MBFWA with each show costing between $50-$100,000. Australian designers who could afford these costs had the platform opportunity to present a brand vision and push home their wares building crucial sales and connections to impress the strong contingent of international press and buyers who regularly come here to scout for fresh talent and new ideas. Continue reading MERCEDES BENZ FASHION WEEK AUSTRALIA 2018


Anoushka Shankar returns to Sydney once again, this time as a versatile and polished performer extending her natural talents in the use and exploration of India’s traditional instrument, the sitar.

Hailed as one of the best sitar players in the world, Anoushka Shankar has taken musical innovation to new heights, developing her skills with this ancient instrument and creating a very unique and intoxicating sound. In fact, success has earned her a multitude of Grammy nominations and accolades following the release of various albums and stardom as a concert performer worldwide.

Anoushka has come a long way since her last visit to Australia in 2010, At that time, she performed alongside her father, the legendary sitar maestro Ravi Shankar on his 90th Birthday farewell concert. He died two years later.  Traces of You was released several months after the passing of her father. The album featured her half-sister Nora Jones as the sole vocal performer and earned Anoushka a fourth Grammy nomination in the World Music category. Continue reading ANOUSHKA SHANKAR IN CONCERT @ SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE