Thursday, December 30, 2010

Last Post Of The Year! ~Melbourne~

So, before Christmas, I jaunted down to the great state of Victoria to visit my friends and enjoy the beautiful city of Melbourne a second time, as well as many of its interesting suburbs.

Here is my best friend Stephanie in front of a convent in Abbotsford (yes, Abbotsford). Within the convent were a few cafes and bakeries, including a vegetarian "pay-what-you-feel" restaurant, which was delicious and awesome. They even make free coffee!

On the weekend I stayed with my friend Cali (Canadian) and her man David (Australian). They lived in Frankston, which is about an hour outside of Melbourne. On the weekend, we went to Luna Park in St. Kilda, which is home to the largest wooden roller coaster in the world.

Me at the the "mouth" of Luna Park.

The historic Luna Park carousel, built in 1913.

The Pharoah's Curse, which I did not ride, but Cali and David are on it. I don't like going completely upside down.

The roller coaster ("Scenic Railway") looks right over the beach and it was a gorgeous sunny day. The view was spectacular. Unfortunately I couldn't take my camera with me on the roller coaster!

This is Lolly, who was my room-mate for the weekend (she's Cali's flatmate's dog).

We took a walk down St. Kilda pier, which was quite pretty, even if the sky looked pretty ominous. It definitely reminded me of Vancouver.

You could definitely tell which way the wind was blowing.

The best part was definitely seeing the little penguins live and in the wild. The video isn't very good, but I can assure you, they were very cute.

I took a trip to the ACCA, the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art and checked out their Beckett-inspired exhibit, which was sparse but still gave me a smile. It was a cool building, too, and right beside the Malthouse Theatre (which was, not shockingly, once a malthouse).

Since that was only a few blocks away from the Shrine of Remembrance, I decided to head on over to get a better look.

From one side:

And from another:

There were plenty of other beautiful monuments dedicated to the Australian soldiers, like this one:

The Shrine of Remembrance is located right by the beautiful Royal Botanical Gardens.

The next week I stayed with Kaye, mum's good friend, and spent my days either with Steph and/or Cali, seeing the sights. There was an amazing exhibit at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, which I couldn't take pictures of, called Dreams Come True, which was all artwork from Disney movies, including cells and concept art from the best princess movies. It was magical! Here are some photos of Federation Square, where the ACMI is located.

from Fed Square, looking at St. Paul's Cathedral.

Steph and I in Fed Square.

Cali and I in Fed Square.

A cool church on Sydney Road, in Brunswick.

A cool building in Chinatown.

The Immigration Museum, which I didn't get a chance to visit last year. Very informative, all about how immigrants from all over the world came to Australia, particularly Victoria.

Rats immigrated, too!

This is the MCG, the Mebourne Cricket Ground. Didn't get much closer. Not a fan of cricket (but don't tell the Australians!!)

This is me with the Spirit Of The Square Wishing Penguin in Federation Square. He's a magical penguin who grants wishes at Christmas. Hurray!

I'm splitting this trip into two blog entries - I just have so many more pictures. So stay tuned, I'll be posting those in the new year... you know, probably tomorrow.

Happy New Year, everybody!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Gold Coast Theatre Awards

Tuesday November 30 was the night of the 2nd Annual Gold Coast Theatre Awards in Benowa. It was a heck of a trek to get there... 45 minutes by train, then got picked up and another 50 minutes by car! But we ended up just outside of Surfer's Paradise at the lovely Gold Coast Arts Centre. Very posh! So much cool art around the building. It was a neat complex.

We were given a free drink with our ticket. Hurray!

My friend Jordan was there to cheer everybody on!

It was pretty dark in the Paradise Room, so the pictures didn't really turn out great. But I ran into half the cast of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee so I insisted on a picture!

From L to R: Me (of course), Frog (Barfee), Nikki (Marcy), Morgan (Logainne) and Ben (our Assistant Musical Director)
Front: Andy (Panch)

So, it was a good night. My category was second-to-last (people kept saying that therefore it was one of the most prestigious) so I couldn't drink as much as I had hoped to! Oh, well. It was very nice to see some of my pals win in their categories! I didn't have a speech prepared so it was just as well I didn't win. Everyone insisted it was a travesty of course, but the more optimistic were very encouraging - "Next year we'll see you up there!" As long as I can keep getting great parts in shows I love, that's enough for me!