Top 10 Australia Culture On this week 06/12/2020 (COVID-19 EDITION)

Drink. It’ll all go faster.


10) Winter Wonderland No More? 

10th December

What: Join scientists Peter Groffman and Lindsey Rustad for a virtual Cary Science Conversation with Cary President Joshua Ginsberg. They will discuss how winters are changing, consequences for forest ecosystems, and adaptations. This event will include time for audience Q&A.

Why: This holiday season, instead of asking “why?”, nod knowingly, mutter “science”, and keep on drinking.


9) In Conversation: Michael Eric Dyson and Jemele Hill

8th December

What: Building on his 2017 bestseller Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America, Michael Eric Dyson’s new book, Long Time Coming: Reckoning with Race in America, grapples with the cultural and social forces that have shaped our nation in the brutal crucible of race. In five chapters—each addressed to a contemporary martyr from Breonna Taylor to Rev. Clementa Pinckney—Dyson traces the genealogy of anti-Blackness from the slave ship to the street corner where George Floyd lost his life and where America gained its will to confront the ugly truth of systemic racism. Listen in as Dyson and Atlantic contributor and sports journalist, Jemele Hill, discuss this new work and race in America.

Why: Because this holiday season, there is absolutely no way this topic won’t be brought up. You might as well reassure yourself that there are people out there who have insights that don’t start with the phrase, “You know, the problem with those people is…”.


8) Dumb People Town Live

13th December

What: Dumb People Town is the live version of the hit comedic podcast of the same name. Dan Van Kirk (Bob’s Burgers) and The Sklar Brothers (Cheap Seats, Better Call Saul, and Glow) riff with special guests on unbelievable news stories of people doing stupid things, like the woman who got her head stuck in the tailpipe of a truck at a country music festival. It’s an exploration and celebration of the dumb behaviour that has become rampant in our world.

Why: Americans talking about people doing stupid things. Sometimes, the greater the hypocrisy, the more fun it becomes to watch.


7) Renwick Invitational Conversation: Rowland Ricketts and Emily Zilber

9th December

What: Learn more about art and process in a lively online conversation with Forces of Nature: Renwick Invitational 2020 artist Rowland Ricketts and exhibition guest curator Emily Zilber. Discover how Ricketts’s farm-to-studio artistic practice uses natural dyes and historical techniques to create contemporary textiles and immersive site-specific installations.

Why: A run-of-the-mill contemporary art discussion you can have on in the background to quell the guilt of spending a solid 24 hours innovating ways to scratch yourself.


6) Bootsy Collins and the Funk Unity Band

12th December

What: Bootzilla Records has reached deep into its performance archives to bring you an unreleased, live funk concert recorded at Bear Creek Festival. Bootsy and Pepperminte Patti will curate and host this throwback Funk moment in time.

Why: Fingers crossed the resurgence of funk is 2021’s insidious plague.


5) Matisyahu: Festival of Light 

12th December

What: American Jewish reggae singer, rapper, beatboxer, and alternative rock musician Matisyahu’s Festival of Light shows are one of the most memorable highlights of his career. The annual end-of-year celebration spreads the Hanukkah light and tradition in a way that is culturally relevant to Jews and non-Jews alike, of all ages, who want to experience something universal based on the transcended themes of peace and prosperity. This night will feature classic, show-stopping hits, and the powerhouse ballads and powerful energy that Matisyahu is known for.

Why: This is worth checking out just to assuage your curiosity.


4) Straight No Chaser 

12th December

What: Internationally famous professional a cappella group are performing live from Maryland’s MGM National Harbor. The show will feature holiday hits and pop staples, as well as some of the group’s most beloved tunes, as well as songs that they have yet to perform live.

Why: It takes all kinds to make a world. Which is why we’re not saying a cappella groups are somehow responsible for the Anfal genocide, we’re just saying we can’t rule it out as a possibility.


3) Believe in Christmas

13th December

What: Andrea Bocelli is performing live from Italy’s Teatro Regio di Parma opera house, with appearances by special guests, for this event entitled ‘Believe in Christmas’.

Why: The biggest, richest a***hole in opera wants you to believe in the magic of the giving season.


2) Writing the Future: Basquiat and the Hip-Hop Generation

9th December

What: Jean-Michel Basquiat became the galvanising, iconic frontrunner of this transformational and insurgent movement in contemporary American art, which resulted in an unprecedented fusion of creative energies that defied longstanding racial divisions.  Writing the Future features Basquiat’s works in painting, sculpture, drawing, video, music and fashion, alongside works by his contemporaries. Throughout the 1980s, these artists fuelled new directions in fine art, design and music, reshaping the predominantly white art world and driving the now-global popularity of hip-hop culture. This event features a panel discussion with Sarah Douglas, editor in chief of ARTnews, based on the exhibit and its companion volume with three of its authors: curator Liz Munsell, critic Greg Tate, and professor J. Faith Almiron.

Why: A couple of phrases memorised from this discussion and you’ll be the coolest, most intellectual, most insufferable knob at your upcoming seasonal gathering.


1) Different From the Others 

11th December

What: A landmark film almost lost to history, ‘Different from the Others’ is widely considered the first feature-length film aimed at a specifically gay audience made all the more significant for its humanistic depiction of gay men and its explicit plea for the end of their social and legal persecution. This livestreamed restoration is based on an earlier restoration by the Munich Filmmuseum with some new additions including intertitles derived from a German synopsis, censorship records and other sources that bridge missing scenes, including a lecture by a “sexologist” who argues, on the basis of biological fact, for the equality and acceptance of homosexuality. Though film still only exists as a fragment, ‘Different from the Others’ remains a compelling artefact from a fleeting progressive moment in German and cinema history.

Why: Because so rarely are the words ‘progressive’ and ‘German’ used in the same sentence without air raid sirens (of both WW2 and Eurovision) ringing in your head.

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