INTERVIEW WITH ‘BLANC DE BLANC’ DIRECTOR SCOTT MAIDMENT AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR MAGAZINE

Scenestr125.jpg

 

I was very fortunate to get to write the cover story for the Christmas-New Year Western Australian print issue of Scenestr, my sixth cover story for the magazine in the past 12 months.  I got to interview Scott Maidment who directs Blanc de Blanc which is showing at Fringe World in Perth this month continuing a two year tour throughout the world to sell out crowds. Maidment has a passion for what he does, originally a performer who founded Strut & Fret Production House which now produces shows that combine cabaret and circus in these fantastic productions. I discussed with him what he sees as his responsibility as the director and getting to work with Madonna amongst other things. It was an absolute pleasure and you can read the interview here http://scenestr.com.au/arts/blanc-de-blanc-sets-its-sights-on-perth-for-fringe-world-20181220

scenestr127

 

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr. is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Having started in 1993 they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland every month. The cover story on Blanc de Blanc features on pages 10 and 11 of the WA print issue. You can read a digital version of the printed Western Australia edition here http://scenestr.com.au/read/WA/2018/22-WA/scenestr-WA-22.html#p=10

Scenestr126.jpg

 

It is the third Cover Story this year I have done for the WA mag. My first cover story for Scenestr was a year ago and also for the last WA mag for 2017 being issue #9 where I interviewed Jascha Boyce from the circus group Gravity and Other Myths. I followed it with 3 cover stories for WA in 2018, issue #11 interviewing SNL star and stand-up comedian Michael Che, #15 covering Chuck Norris coming to Supernova and now issue #22 about Blanc de Blanc.

scenestr124

 

To have done one cover story means a lot to me and to have interviewed such fascinating people remains one of the scariest and most fulfilling things I have dared to do these past two years. Whatever 2019 brings, I will always be grateful for this. If you’re in Perth I would strongly urge you to check out Blanc de Blanc, clearly a show not to be missed made by very hard working and talented people.

-Lloyd Marken

Advertisements

INTERVIEW WITH FLICKERFEST DIRECTOR BRONWYN KIDD AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR MAGAZINE

Scenestr120.jpg

 

On assignment with Scenestr magazine I interviewed the director of Flickerfest, Australia’s largest short film festival with Academy accreditation and BAFTA recognition. You can read the interview here http://scenestr.com.au/movies/flickerfest-2019-a-different-way-of-storytelling-20181219

Scenestr123.jpg

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises, Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Celebrating 25 years in 2018 of publishing history they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for WA, SA, NSW, Vic and QLD every month. This interview was published in print in the Christmas-New Year issue for New South Wales on page 28 which is always a thrill for a GenX guy like myself. A digital copy of that issue can be viewed here http://scenestr.com.au/read/NSW/2018/32-NSW/scenestr-NSW-32.html#p=29 If you’re into music they’re a great read but they do cover all of the arts including festivals, stand-up comics, fashion, theatre and film. I feel very fortunate to get to write for them.

-Lloyd Marken

THE YEAR THAT WAS 2018 ON LLOYD MARKEN WORDPRESS

20180404_220651
My sister and I on her wedding day. Copyright Lloyd Marken.

 

Five years on from my very first post and how time flies. I’m very grateful for my blogging community which has grown my confidence and given me an outlet I desperately needed in my life. As is customary I am doing a quick recap at the end of the year. In 2018 a lot of old posts proved more popular than my new posts. The new posts  for the most part act as links to where I am published elsewhere occasionally offering some behind the scenes info in a more informal manner. I will only be listing posts published this year.

America is still No.1 in terms of readership, Australia has retaken No.2 from the UK and Canada remains in fourth place as always. Cracking the Top 5 this year is India with newcomer Hong Kong making a strong showing in the latter half of 2018 and reaching No. 6. Germany which had a grip on N.5 for most of the year slips to No. 7 and Japan, New Zealand and Malaysia leave the Top 10. In No. 8 France returns to the Top 10, the Philippines makes if for the first time in No. 9 and holding on to a Top 10 position is Indonesia as the country with the tenth most views. Overall there were less views from the U.K. and Canada but more views from the rest of the Top 10 countries with all 10 cracking triple digits in number of views. Which I guess makes for a more diverse readership.

Related image

Top 10 Most Views by Country

  1. The United States of America                                                                               9,519 Views
  2. Australia                                                                                                                   1,898 Views
  3. The United Kingdom                                                                                              1,714 Views
  4. Canada                                                                                                                         685 Views
  5. India                                                                                                                             361 Views
  6. Hong Kong SAR China                                                                                               200 Views
  7. Germany                                                                                                                      188 Views
  8. France                                                                                                                          113 Views
  9. Philippines                                                                                                                  108 Views
  10. Indonesia                                                                                                                     106 Views

 

Stats 2018.jpg

Out of the 108 posts published for the year the following 25 got the most views. In 2015 the blog started to grow with 1,609 views, 333 visitors, 23 Likes and 30 comments. In 2016 the blog received 5,673 views, 3,206 visitors, 546 Likes and 751 comments. In 2017 this grew to 16,767 views (more than a third of which were for The Founder Review), 11,891 visitors, 1,240 Likes and 1,707 comments. In 2018 much to my surprise we stayed steady at 16,706 views and 12,185 visitors with the site receiving 1,091 likes and 1,046 comments. There has been a slight downtick in liking and commenting of posts which makes sense since my focus is less intense on growing my blogging community and some fellow bloggers have given the game away. One thing about the results strongly supports an idea I have of where to put my energies next. Overall I just want to say again how much it means to me to have my core group and how much I appreciate anybody who reads and enjoys the blog.

 

Scenestr91

Top 25 Most Viewed Posts 2018

 

  1. INTERVIEW WITH GRAVITY AND OTHER MYTHS MEMBER JASCHA BOYCE AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                                                                        75 Views
  2. ROCKET MAN – PRELUDE                                                                                           58 Views

    20180402_025652.jpg
    Copyright Lloyd Marken
  3. ROCKET MAN – THE WEDDING OF THE YEAR                                                       57 Views
  4. MY FAVOURITE FILMS OF 2017                                                                                52 Views
  5. I WAS A NINTH DEGREE BLACK BELT NARCISSIST                                             50 Views
  6. I LIKE PADDINGTON 2 TOO                                                                                       45 Views
  7. THE YEAR THAT WAS 2017 ON LLOYD MARKEN WORDPRESS                        44 Views
  8. CUCKOO FOR COCO                                                                                                     42 Views
  9. BRINGING BACK BIFF – BIFF 2008 PART I                                                               40 ViewsBIFF 2008
  10. 100 POSTS PUBLISHED                                                                                               38 Views
  11. ROCKET MAN – THE RETURN COMMUTE                                                               38 Views
  12. A QUIET PLACE REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                          38 ViewsScenestr77
  13. ‘LORD OF THE FLIES’ BY BEENLEIGH THEATRE GROUP REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                                                                                                      37 Views
  14. INTERVIEW WITH ALLIANCE FRANCAISE FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL DIRECTOR PHILIPPE PLATEL AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                                      36 Views
  15. MY NAME IS MAURICE MICKLEWHITE, NOW THERE’S NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT KNOW THAT                                                                                                      35 Views
  16. ‘CHER: HERE WE GO AGAIN’ BRISBANE OPENING NIGHT REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR MAGAZINE                                                                                                34 Views

    20180928_215640
    Copyright Lloyd Marken
  17. TOP 10 FILMS OF 2018… SO FAR LIST… AVAILABLE AT X-PRESS MAGAZINE                                                                                                                    34 Views
  18. BRINGING BACK BIFF – BIFF 2007 PART II                                                             34 Views
  19. I, TONYA REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                                      34 Views
  20. COVER STORY ON CHUCK NORRIS AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                         33 Views
  21. ROCKET MAN – AN AUSTRALIAN IN LONDON                                                      33 Views

    20180406_021405
    Copyright Lloyd Marken
  22. ROCKET MAN – THE CANTON ROUTE                                                                      33 Views
  23. THE HAPPYTIME MURDERS REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                    31 Views
  24. BRINGING BACK BIFF – BIFF 2007 PART I                                                               31 Views
  25. INTERVIEW WITH, THE GENIE OF ‘ALADDIN’, GARETH JACOBS AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR                                                                                                                      31 Views
20180228_220625
Karen and I with the cast of Aladdin. Copyright Lloyd Marken.

It has been very nice to see some of the posts that were enjoyed the most were ones that were very personal including about travelling to attend my sister’s wedding overseas and recollections of the Brisbane International Film Festival. I’m also glad that everybody seems to enjoy my list for the best films of the year and look forward to doing another one for 2018 around Oscar time. Also blogging about my first cover story for Scenestr has proven the most popular post on my blog for 2018 which is very gratifying. It was a lot of fun and a real privilege to do the interview with Jascha Boyce.

 

'First Man'

 

For Your Consideration

So here is the point where I urge you to consider some of the posts I’m most proud of. Most are already listed and have proven popular like my Rocket Man posts and review of Cher’s concert.  I would ask you to consider my review for the movie First Man over at Scenestr which is perhaps my favourite of the film reviews I wrote this year. Any of the Scenestr cover stories I would highly recommend which included a profile on Chuck Norris, an interview with outgoing Adelaide Cabaret Festival Artistic Director Ali McGregor, with SNL star and stand-up Michael Che and with Jascha Boyce.

Scenestr64

Well that’s it for another year so thank you so much to everybody who reads my humble blog and I would like to take this moment to thank my fellow bloggers for their continued support Pete, Cindy, GP, Don, Vinnie, Jay, Sean, Paul, Allen, John K, Michael, Jet, Eddie, Alex, Paol, Jordon, John R, SJS, DB, Emma, Jersey Dreaming, Robin, Eric and anybody else who takes the time to read these posts. It would be helluva lot less fun without you all.

-Lloyd Marken

BIFF 2018
Rosie and I on Opening Night of BIFF 2018 on assignment for Scenestr magazine.  Copyright of BIFF from their 2018 Facebook site.

 

‘VICE’ REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

Scenestr121.jpg

 

I am a big fan of director/writer Adam McKay so I was very happy to get to review his latest Vice for Scenestr magazine. I attended a preview screening with Karen at New Farm cinemas with the customary meal afterwards at the nearby Pig’n’Whistle pub. Such evenings have occurred enough that they’re becoming a habit, a fact I hope continues am very grateful for. I also ran into someone who I knew years ago as a teenager at an after school drama group. He’s since become a reality TV star and is heavily involved in media and attending all kinds of social engagements around town. He’s doing well and it was nice to get to talk to him.

As for the movie, I think this is a less flashy follow-up to The Big Short but cut from the same cloth. You can read more of my thoughts here http://scenestr.com.au/movies-and-tv/vice-review-20181219 I was really keen to see this film and so look forward to hearing your thoughts. The trailer that got me so excited is below.

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Celebrating 25 years in 2018 of publishing history they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and now Victoria! every month too.

-Lloyd Marken

‘TWO MAN TARANTINO’ AND ‘CLAIRE HEALEY’ REVIEWS AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

Image result for wonderland festival brisbane powerhouse 2018

Friday night and I saw my two final shows at Wonderland for 2018 on assignment with Scenestr, one I was eagerly anticipating Two Man Tarantino and the other Claire Healy: (Get A) Real Job interested me with its subject matter.

The week was one of those weeks that you dream about as a freelance writer, Wednesday night I was on assignment for a preview screening of a movie with one publication and then I was due to see three shows at Wonderland on Thursday and Friday night. They were good shows, all with something to offer it is true but there are criticisms I have. One thing that struck me about both shows that concluded my attendance at the festival this year was how they got better as they went along and finished strongly. I walked out of Claire Healy’s one-woman show late Friday night and felt a little bit better about the movie I’d seen Wednesday, a little bit better about the shows I’d seen at Wonderland that week and a little bit better about life in general. Not bad.

Scenestr118.jpg

You can read my review for Two Man Tarantino here http://scenestr.com.au/arts/two-man-tarantino-brisbane-review-wonderland-festival-2018-20181203 and Claire Healy here http://scenestr.com.au/arts/claire-healy-get-a-real-job-brisbane-review-wonderland-festival-2018-20181203

Scenestr119.jpg

The five shows I saw at Wonderland 2017 I enjoyed more but I felt with a lot of the shows this year I was seeing artists earlier in their careers taking it to the next level, doing more with less, refining their art and figuring out what they want to achieve. I can’t wait to see what they do next.

At Wonderland 2017 I felt like seeing Nath Valvo gave me an insight into what Melbourne already knew, that here was a comedian about to go national. Love/Hate Actually in 2018 returned triumphantly to Wonderland following a tour that took in amongst other places Ipswich, the Gold Coast, Perth, Melbourne and Fiji. Michelle Zahner has taken A Modern Guide to Heroism and Sidekickery to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Who knows where we will see Claire Healy, Anisa Nandaula, Adam Koudi, Kayne Falkiner, Vashti Hughes, Matt Abell-King, Emily Kristopher, Stephen Hirst and Sam Bowden next.

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Celebrating 25 years in 2018 of publishing history they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and now Victoria! every month too.

-Lloyd Marken

 

THE EPICUREAN SHARK REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

Image result for wonderland festival brisbane powerhouse 2018

My coverage of Wonderland Festival 2018 continues with the third show I was lucky to review for Scenestr magazine this year. This was Thursday night during the second week of Wonderland and I was back in the intimate Graffiti Room. The Epicurean Shark is a one-man stand-up show from the funny Sam Bowden. The title reveals that this is an artist who is thoughtful and pondering some big ideas. I think there is room for growth but I look forward to seeing Mr Bowden develop his work and enjoyed his show.

Scenestr117

You can read more of my thoughts here http://scenestr.com.au/comedy/the-epicurean-shark-brisbane-review-wonderland-festival-2018-20181203

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Celebrating 25 years in 2018 of publishing history they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and now Victoria! every month too.

-Lloyd Marken

THE GRASS IS DEAD ON THE OTHER SIDE REVIEW AVAILABLE ON SCENESTR

Image result for wonderland festival brisbane powerhouse 2018

I saw my second of my five shows I am scheduled to review at Wonderland Festival for Scenestr magazine on Sunday afternoon. Following on from going with friends to see Love/Hate Actually on Saturday night I am so far having a fantastic Wonderland 2018. I also by chance ran into Vashti Hughes of Larry’s Odyssey who said they liked my review. A real joy to have had that happen.

Scenestr116

The Grass Is Dead On The Other Side is created by and starring multiple talent threat Anisa Nandaula who amongst other things is a champion slam poet. The premise of the show is particularly strong as two siblings face isolation and displacement following a zombie apocalypse that has all the hallmarks of colonialization, corporate plundering, re-writing history, and national displacement.  There is no limit to how much further this piece could be developed but with very little in means of production here and led by powerful performances the show proved moving. On our way out I ended up behind Anisa and told her “You were fantastic.” and I meant it. Definitely people to watch, you can read my review here http://scenestr.com.au/arts/the-grass-is-dead-on-the-other-side-brisbane-review-wonderland-festival-2018-20181127 There were only two shows running on Sunday for the whole festival and both reportedly sold out.

Produced by Eyeball Media Enterprises Scenestr is an online national magazine with local offices around Australia. Celebrating 25 years in 2018 of publishing history they’ve excelled at moving into the digital realm but they remain at heart from the streets. They still publish magazines in print for Western Australia, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and now Victoria! every month too.

-Lloyd Marken