Posts Tagged ‘The CorriLee Foundation


A Few of My Favourite Men for one night only in Sydney




So y’all might have noticed I don’t post too much publicity here ahead of events anymore. This is because


a) I am time poor


b) I am poor


We bloggers and writers take time to write stuff – the sort of time that you spend doing your job that pays you by the hour – and sometimes, like when there are bills to pay and artists to treat on Hastings Street, we need an incentive that is a little more inspiring than, “I’d love you to share this with your networks”. However, there are times when I’m happy to copy and paste stuff for a cause or a company I feel strongly about (otherwise you can enquire about my rates to promote your show or special event. I thank you). The Corrilee Foundation is a fave of mine.




Our good friend, Tanya Lee, has always done incredible work with The Corrilee Foundation (you’ll remember One Night In Emerald City, which gave me another chance to work with the professional Sydney cast of a David Williamson play in our favourite destination to make and stage a show, Noosa), and this month she’s staging an extra special event, featuring a few of her favourite men on stage together for one night only, next week on August 12 at the basement, Sydney.



So far the impressive line up includes Wil Anderson, Mikey Robins, Tim Rogers, Tony Squires, Dave Field, Geoff Morrell, Terry Serio, Jeff Duff, Peter Northcote, Dario Bortolin, Lloyd G & Greg Agar. 


The Evening will include Auction Items and Raffle Prizes.


Join Tanya Lee and a few of her favourite men for an evening of live music, banter and awesome images from Tony Mott



All funds raised will assist the Mirabel Foundation in its vital work to support children orphaned or abandoned due to parental illicit drug use.


The Mirabel Foundation was established in Victoria in 1998. It is the only organisation in Australia specifically addressing the needs of children who have been orphaned or abandoned due to parental drug use.


The tragedy of drug‐related deaths is compounded by the children left behind. Children without family may find themselves in foster care, sometimes separated from their siblings. Many go into the care of extended family (kinship care), usually with elderly grandparents who have little or no financial or social support. These are Mirabel children.


Mirabel is currently supporting over 1400 children and young people, the most profoundly overlooked casualties of substance abuse in our society.


“My Daddy is always sick and his medicine makes him sleepy.” Tahana, 3 years


Tahana is 3 years old and has recently moved to live with her great aunt Ruby. Her Mum is in prison for drug-related crime and her Dad is unable to care for her due to his addiction to drugs. Tahana knows a lot for a 3 year old and has remarkable survival skills. She can find a way to reach food in the highest of cupboards and can work the DVD player like a teenager.


Ruby was asked to care for Tahana when Child Protection found her wandering the streets looking for food. Ruby is committed to the long-term health and happiness of Tahana and says that she wants her to have a normal childhood. She has started attending Mirabel’s kinship carer support groups where she has met lots of people in a similar situation to herself.


Tahana and Ruby spent a cherished weekend together at Mirabel House where they strengthened their relationship away from the stresses of day to day living. They are looking forward to the next Family Day where Tahana can begin to make friends with children just like her – friendships that Ruby hopes will continue when Tahana is old enough to join Mirabel’s Recreation Program and Therapeutic Children’s Groups.




You can support the amazing work the Mirabel Foundation do with kids like Tahana and have a terrific night out with friends when you join Tanya Lee and a few of her favourite men at the basement next week.


Book tickets here








australian story to film letter for larry

Our amazing friends at The CorriLee Foundation have let us know that the ABC’s Australian Story will film the production of Letter to Larry, a play based on the life of Vivien Leigh, on Monday April 2. This will be the second time in less than 12 months that an event by The CorriLee Foundation has been filmed by Australian Story.
We are so very proud of Tanya Lee and her team’s achievement. More and more often, we are asked by our Facebook friends and Twitterati to re-post “for one hour” and to re-tweet messages of mental health advocacy and awareness but how often do we do anything more than that? Mental health is a growing concern for many Australians and needs to be taken seriously if we are to smash the stigma associated and do something to help ourselves and others. We hope that, if you’re in Sydney on April 2nd, you can get to The CorriLee Foundation’s special presentation of the beautiful piece, dedicated to the memory of Di Bliss, Letter to Larry for SANE Australia. There’s no easier way to support this great cause and get a wonderful night of entertainment, networking and new friends into the bargain, at The Bondi Pavilion Theatre.

summer of the seventeenth doll opens thursday!

How excitement! This revival, the national touring production of Ray Lawler’s classic 1950’s play, Summer of the Seventeenth Doll, directed by Neil Armfield and starring Robyn Nevin, with whom I once shared the stage in Noosa, opens at QPAC in Brisbane on Thursday.

QTC’s season opener is one of Australia’s most iconic, pivotal plays; a pillar of Australian theatre and a story which has been lauded for 50 years. “Times have changed but the characters still come through,” says 90 year old playwright, Ray Lawler.

The Doll premiered in 1955, at the Union Theatre in Melbourne (where Lawler was Manager at the time) and following a successful Sydney season, toured the West End and Broadway, where it ran for 5 weeks after Lawler refused to change any of the “Australianisms”, which would have made the play more accessible in the American market. Little wonder that Lawler has never watched the British-Australian 1959 film version, re-titled Season of Passion for its American release.

Queensland Theatre Company last staged the Doll at the SGIO Theatre in August 1974. Directed by Joe MacColum, the cast included Diane Berryman  as Bubba, Kate Wilson as Pearl, Suzanne Roylance as Olive, Hazel Howson as Emma, Douglas Hedge as Barney, Frank Gallacher as Roo and Terry Brady as Johnnie Dowd.

Set in Australia in the 1950s, the Doll tells the story of cane-cutters Barney and Roo, who return from Queensland to the Carlton house they share with Nancy and Olive every year, for their annual five-months of fun. It’s been this way for 17 years. This summer though, it’s different.  Barney’s 17-year seasonal girlfriend Nancy has gone and gotten married; so Olive ropes in the uptight Pearl as company for him; while she and Roo, who is flat broke, realise life has caught up with them, and their relationship. Is this really the end?

Starring a superb cast led by Australia’s leading lady of the stage Robyn Nevin, the Doll has been revived; its messages just as poignant as they were when the play was first performed in Melbourne in 1955, forever changing the landscape of Australian Theatre like no other play before, or since. “It’s still about human need, human failings, human flaws, human aspirations,” says Nevin, a member of MTC’s Season 2012 Programming Team.

‘This production of the Doll fell beautifully into our laps. It was already programmed as Neil Armfield’s final production for Belvoir St Theatre in Sydney and I had been cast. But it was only when both Ray Lawler and Neil Armfield made it clear that they would love MTC to take it on that we realised it would be such a perfect fit,” said Nevin.

Summer of the Seventeenth Doll stars Steve Le Marquand (Buried Child, Underbelly Razor, Beneath Hill 60) as Roo; the enigmatic Robyn Nevin as Emma Leach; Alison Whyte (Frontline, Satisfaction, City Homicide, Logie, Helpmann and GreenRoom award winner) as Olive Leach; Eloise Winestock (As You Like It, Romeo & Juliet) as Bubba Ryan; Helen Thompson (Getting’ Square, Green Room award winner) as Pearl Cunningham; Travis McMahon (Cloudstreet, Don’s Party, Last Man Standing) as Barney Ibbot, and James Hoare (Noises Off, Twelfth Night) as Johnnie Dowd.

 “Ray Lawler wrote a play against marriage, says Neil Armfield. “Ray held up this amazing mirror and, as great theatre does, it shows us who we are.”

Kewpie Doll from The Performing Arts Collection, Melbourne


        Summer of the Seventeenth Doll, by Ray Lawler

When:                     22 February to March 11

Where:                    Playhouse QPAC

Director:                 Neil Armfield

 Cast:                       Steve Le Marquand, Robyn Nevin, Alison Whyte, Helen Thomson, Travis McMahon, Eloise Winestock, and James Hoare

Set Designer:         Ralph Myers

Costumes:              Dale Ferguson

Lighting:                Damien Cooper

Composer:              Alan John

Sound:                     Paul Charlier

Asst Director:        Susanna Dowling

Under 30 $33; Previews $42-$56; Mid-Week $56-$75; Weekend $60-$79

Tel 1800 355 528 or

About Performing Arts Collection

The Arts Centre’s Performing Arts Collection is Australia’s premier collection relating to the history of circus, dance, music, theatre and opera, and is home to over 450,000 items including costumes, archives, designs and photographs.

Olive. Design by Anne Fraser for MTC's 1977 production, on which Armfield's revival is based.


Cybersin & suicide prevention

Cybersin, a Sunshine Coast produced anti-bullying film, supported by The CorriLee Foundation, was released on Monday September 5th and yesterday, it aired on the popular morning show, Sunrise. With John Jarrett playing the father of a girl who commits suicide after she is cyber-bullied, Evette Henderson’s film was always going to get some attention. In fact, Jarret’s scene, in which he breaks down in front of the mirror in the bathroom before – we assume – going downstairs to greet the guests at his daughter’s wake, is probably the best, in terms of suddenly raising the stakes and asking us to consider the long-term and broader effects of bullying somebody online. That got me. What doesn’t wash so well with me is the inference that the girl’s suicide has occurred after one incidence of cyber-bullying. Now, wait a second. I’m not saying it’s okay to bully (or to be bullied) just the once and I’m not questioning anybody’s decision to choose death over life…well, actually, I am but we’ll get to that in a later post. My problem is this. What exactly are we teaching about bullying and more specifically, in this case, cyber-bullying? What skills and attitudes and approaches are we handing on to our kids so that they may have the courage, strength and support networks to CHOOSE LIFE! If you’re an 80’s child, like I am, you’ll know that the slogan wasn’t just a WHAM! thing.

Launched in 1983 CHOOSE LIFE was part of a range of protest T-shirts by designer Katherine Hamnett.

Perhaps this is the reason behind some school administrations’ claims that the film is “too controversial” to be shown to their students. They think one incident will prompt the most drastic action from copycats. Is that it? It must be because otherwise, I can’t see which aspect of the 8 minutes is too controversial – personally, I feel the message could have been stronger – but such is the bureaucracy in schools these days and good luck getting anything slightly controversial through (though Summer Bay continues to crop up in genre studies, doesn’t it?) Talk to the teachers and parents on the weekends and you’ll hear what actually needs to be discussed (and probably that there is little time to discuss anything “additional”). So what is being discussed? What needs to be discussed further? How do young adults feel when they see Cybersin? Or when they see the many YouTube clips pertaining to suicide stories or (horror) footage from live television shows or cyber-bullying in general or the following TED talk, which you should just stop and take in now…

For me, suicide is no taboo. I’m not 100% comfortable talking about it and I don’t understand some of the things I hear from those who have contemplated suicide or have been affected by suicide. I am unable to understand, for instance, what it is that pushes a person over the edge – what it is that makes you take that step off solid ground, from which you can’t come back, even if you change your mind at the last moment – but I’m not unable to talk about it. We need to talk about it. And, more importantly, we need to listen to those who want to talk about it. Some of the kids are already talking about it. Some of them don’t know how to start. But if we don’t tune in we’ll miss it. The entire conversation. This short film will, at the very least, get the conversations started and that is to be commended. Congrats and thanks to Evette and to all involved in the production and promotion of the film on the Sunshine Coast, using local talent, contributing to the growth of our Screen Industry as well as simply and boldly telling this story and sharing it with those who are ready to listen. Is it you?

Watch Cybersin for yourself and let us know what sort of conversations you are having.

September 10th is World Suicide Prevention Day. If you’re on the Sunshine Coast, meet at 5:35am at The Esplanade, Cotton Tree and walk out of the shadows and into the light to raise awareness and raise funds for suicide prevention.

Date: 10 September 2011
Time: 5.35am
Meeting place: The Esplanade, Cotton Tree between First and Second Avenues
Contact:Lee-Anne Borham

Check the website to find a walk near you or register your own walk.

Click Atttending on the Facebook event page

And if you know somebody who needs to talk and wants to do so anonymously, give them one of these numbers

Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800

Lifeline  13 11 14


Download Lifeline Service Finder iPhone App


Too Many Too Soon

I wanted to share with you, a message from a friend, Tanya Lee; the founder of The CorriLee Foundation, with whom I had the pleasure and privilege to work, during the Noosa Longweekend‘s One Night in Emerald City special event. I can’t even begin to describe the energy and passion and drive that this woman has for projects like these. She is awe-inspiring and I can’t wait to work with her on something – anything – again.

This is a project that is supported by many…and now needs to reach out to many more. Please support the making of this television commercial and know that, in doing so, you are playing an active role in youth suicide prevention.


It would be wonderful if you took a look at the website and uploaded or emailed a headshot of yourself, to be used for a youth suicide awareness commercial.


The concept of the commercial is to use hundreds of photographic images submitted by people who want to create awareness of youth suicide and support Kids Helpline.


All the photographs submitted will be used to form a montage of Tahlia’s face – a young woman whom tragically lost her life too soon and to whom the commercial is dedicated.
The project has received generous support from The CorriLee Foundation, BoysTown, David Field, Miranda Kerr and her mother, Therese Kerr, in order to come to fruition.


The making of the commercial will take place in mid March with David Field and Miranda Kerr doing the voice overs.


Please upload your own photo and forward this message on to your friends, family and Facebook contacts. It is so easy to upload a photo and takes 10 seconds to make a difference!


Thank you so much for your time and ongoing support.


Known People so far who have sent a photo include:

Wil Anderson

Paula Duncan

David Field

Prue MacSween

Darren Cahill

Ita Buttrose AO OBE

Miranda & Therese Kerr

Artist Melissa Egan

Artist Sinead Davies

Daniel MacPherson

Ian Roberts

Scott Draper

Sarah Fitz-Gerald AM

Tracey Spicer

Mikey Robins

Chris O’Neil

Mark Edmondson

David Williamson

John Alexander

No. 9 ranked tennis player Fernando Verdasco

Author & SBS presenter Liz Deep-Jones

Bob Ansett

Terry Serio

Steve Liebmann

Mark Bouris

Ian Rogerson

Shane Warne

Anastasia Rodionova

Sir Ian Botham

Carl Barron

Steve Kilbey

Bruce McAvaney

Artist Adam Cullen

Wayne Gardner

Adam Hills

Molly Meldrum

world no. 1 Squash player Nicole David

Rennae Stubbs

Harry M Miller

Simonne Logue

Bianca Dyer

and hopefully many many more to come!




That Just Happened


One Night In Emerald City

The Corrilee Foundation

And Noosa Longweekend 

Friday November 26 2010




This time last week, I was swanning around with Robyn Nevin, Paula Duncan, David Field, Ita Buttrose, Bob Ansett, Mikey Robins, Lucy Bell, Ian Roberts, Felix Williamson, Jim Berardo, Daniel MacPherson and Sammy Power. Now, I think I mentioned Shane Bourne in my last post about this and that was me referring to inaccurate, outta date info. Shane was not involved in this version of the show. Sorry to mislead you.


In order to avoid further confusion, by “swanning around” I mean I turned up to The J in Noosa, at 10:45am on Friday, with Aroma’s soy chai latte in hand (yes, I know there is now soy rotting inside of me; shut up), met everybody, including the mastermind behind the whole huge event, the inimitable Ms Tanya Lee of The Corrilee Foundation, took my place on stage next to Dan MacPherson, and we read through the play twice (we stopped for lunch in between readings). And THAT was rehearsal. And THAT was the day. Oh, and I took off to our lovely room at Netanya for a hot tub, then to Rococco’s for Veuve and oysters, before heading back to the theatre for hair and make up.




David Field played two roles during the day – actor and director – and he was awesome in both. In fact, if I didn’t continue to feel the pull to keep getting up on stage, I would happily sit in a studio or in the theatre with stupidly talented people like David and simply absorb his energy and ideas by osmosis. In fact, I have a whole list of these directors. And actors. And authors. And teachers. And leaders. You know, those people in whose presence you would just like to be. Obviously, there is a fine line between being invisible and um, stalking…


As a director, David tends to stand back and let the action unfold. If he (barely) visibly cringes, you know you’re about to be politely interrupted and given a direction like, “Just tone all of that down a bit. Let’s go again and stay right with the script. It’s all there. It’s all in there”, which is easy to say when you have a David Williamson script in hand. It IS all in there and, particularly within a play reading context, the words must win in the end. As a director and as an actor, David Field GETS IT. I love the way he holds the stage, having established his presence on stage and continues to hold your attention – while you hold your breath – waiting for his next line. He doesn’t pull any stunts or lay on anything too thick. He just IS who he has to be to relay the story to the audience (he knows they’re captivated).




I wonder if, even with all of the talk about it in the media being “just” a play reading (and we tried not to say “just”), people knew what to expect…the actors sitting on stage, books in hand. It doesn’t happen too often on the Sunshine Coast. Except at rehearsals for full scale productions. And they’re usually closed rehearsals. Did anybody expect to see sets and costumes? I mean, a staged play reading to anybody involved in the theatre indicates that we would actually be moving it a bit. Actually, Felix and I got to move it a lot; the low solid timber table was ideal for our “wrestling” as his uncle, Chris, phrased it the other day on FM 101.3; “You and Felix got to wrestle quite a bit, didn’t you? Felix is my nephew, you know”. I KNOW. I think I told him, live on air, that Felix can wrestle me anytime he likes. I know. It just came out. We were live, kids; what could I do?!


It was pure joy to watch Robyn Nevin at work (I worked with Robyn Nevin!) I absolutely adore her vocal work especially. It’s that trained voice, isn’t it? Duh. Lovely Lucy Bell has it too (I worked with Lucy Bell!) Cate Blanchett has it too (note to self: work with Cate one day). My mum does not have it, however; Robyn Nevin reminds me of her. Seriously. She looks like my mum. Or, my mum looks like Robyn Nevin. We’ve all said it for years. And it’s true. When I have time to find the pics, I will post portraits of both theatre loving ladies and you shall see for yourselves.


Ian Roberts was totes OTT (it totes worked for him), playing a serial killer who’d never been caught, killing off only those who deserved it, the scum of the earth (bankers, financial advisers…) whilst out on their morning jog, taking down one spear-tackle victim at time. Ita Buttrose, one of the most elegant old-world ladies I have ever had the pleasure of meeting, was a fabulous Zara, delivering the wordiest, funniest monologue in the piece. Paula Duncan was superb, during her brief appearance as the very Christian cleaning lady who came across not just mine and Felix’s characters in a compromising position but also, Lucy’s and Mikey Robbins’ characters in a similarly compromising position. This of course resulted in her securing not one but two holidays in Bora Bora, which the audience LOVED. There are no small parts, kids!


I think I mentioned Dan MacPherson (I worked with Dan MacPherson!) He played the past-it skateboard champ and had his own hilarious little moments, recanting the completely fabricated tales of his success. Dan is one of those soapie stars who truly used the genre (the soap and all those suds) as a solid foundation to take him into the next genre (the grit and guts of crime drama). Dan is no ordinary TV actor. In fact, David Field and Daniel MacPherson have given me a whole new outlook on “TV actors” (being based on the Sunshine Coast, I don’t know many of them, unless I went to uni with them, which I find is often the case because they are all super talented and super gorgeous and their potential for TV was spotted long before they graduated!) so I’ve never doubted their talent as actors, I just didn’t realise they were so passionate about theatrical projects and would, perhaps, like to do more of them.




The evening was a success. As I hadn’t felt nervous since about 10:44 the same morning, I did only some very minimal jumping around in the wings (and if you’ve seen me in the wings before a show, I hope a) you were not in the audience at the time because it would be appallingly unprofessional of me to be seen at that juncture and b) that you realise I don’t actually JUMP around. It’s more like…little ballet fairy warm-up runs on the spot and sometimes those shivery running legs, you know, like in Flashdance. I don’t do jumping around).


I will tell you the secret to what I hope was a great performance, worthy of being included amongst such esteemed company (as I say, I hope it was, otherwise YOU’RE ALL LIARS), which came from David Field. And later, from Ian Mackellar too, the General Manager of The Noosa Longweekend and the instigator of this project happening in Noosa. And it was for some reason, shocking coming from Ian and normal coming from David! They both said something like, “Tonight, vamp it up…slut it up. GO FOR IT.”  SLUT IT UP. That’s right. It’s my new favourite phrase and has, I believe, the potential to be used in many Christmas season contexts coming up. Try it. Try it at the staff Christmas function by shouting to a colleague on the dance floor after six too many drinks after a bad buffet dinner, “That’s it, love; SLUT IT UP!” It will certainly help to make an impression.


The official post-show party was pretty fun too, these things usually are; we settled on the lounge with Dan’s super-cool chic, Nat, and let the fans and friends (and the wait staff, who were excellent, with their trays of teeny-tiny, love- heart-shaped, mushroom-filled delicacies provided by Splash) come to us.  The unofficial post-post-show party was even more fun but you know, what happens at the post-post-show party stays at the post-post-show party.


Perhaps somebody who was there  and enjoyed the show, will write the unbiased, unassociated post next! I’d like to see that! And I’d like to see photos! I didn’t want to be that girl who stopped to have her picture taken with everybody…that role was clearly reserved for Sammy Power! Love your work, Sammy!


Do check out The Corrilee Foundation. The next One Night in Emerald City event is to be in Melbourne next year, at The Malthouse (yes, they know I’m available!) but they do a heap of other work right through the year (more on the project that David Field and Miranda Kerr are involved in coming soon). I hope I will have the privilege and the pleasure of working with all of these wonderful people again sometime, in some capacity. And in the meantime, life goes on.


As I tweeted the following day, “One day you’re on stage with the likes of Robyn Nevin and the next you’re back in the studio coaching kids!”

As @Dramagirl promptly replied, as she does, “That’s showbiz!”