Dazzling dogs arrive in droves Reply

by Bernadette Burke

Rachel Davies with one of her pampered Shih Tzu pooches. Photo: Bernadette Burke

It’s time again for thousands of spectacular dog breeds to arrive in droves – it’s the Sydney Royal Dog Show. The animals may not spend long on the judging lawn, but for owners, entering their beloved pets in the Show is a time-consuming labour of love.

Rachel Davies entered seven of her 13 dogs in the Shih Tzu Specialty category this year, and had been up since 3.30 am yesterday to make sure they all looked their best. One that made her particularly proud was five and a half year old Blade.

Rachel shows her dogs at the Sydney Royal Easter Show every year, given that it is second biggest in the Southern Hemisphere.


Young Chinese singer provokes accusations of racism in China Reply

by Jui-Wei Yang

Entertainer Lou Jing’s appearance on Chinese reality television show created a storm of controversy.

A CNN report about racism in China, posted on Youtube in 2009, continues to cause great debate online about China’s attitude towards race and racism.

The report focuses on Lou Jing who has a Chinese mother and an African American father.  When Ms Jin appeared on the Chinese reality show ‘Let’s Go, Oriental Angels’, she was referred to as “chocolate girl” and “black pearl” by the show’s hosts.  The comments and Lou Jing’s appearance created a storm.  The Chinese media fixated on her skin colour, and repeated racists comments such as “She never should have been born” and “get out of China” that were launched against her online.

The CNN video received over 50,000 hits, with viewership from China ranking first.


The art of boylesque Reply

by Bernadette Burke 

The art of boylesque has, like burlesque, its roots in political satire. Photo: Michael Holden

Matthew Parsons is on a mission to define  ‘classic burlesque’ – which by historical standards is impossible for a man. In the 1920s, there was no such thing as male burlesque. But in Sydney 2012, something called ‘boylesque’ exists. Matthew Parsons is a performer and creator of a showcase called ‘Burlesque Bad Boys’.

“ Basically to be burlesque you’ve gotta take off your clothes,” Mr Parsons says. “I think that burlesque is inherently political as well as sexual. Its roots are really in political satire, and the original concept was a woman getting on stage and controlling her sexuality.” Classic female burlesque performers were sexual beings in control of how much the audience saw and when, he explains.


All birds great and small Reply

by Bernadette  Burke

Kathy Manton, Assistant Bird Show Manager, loves judging budgerigars. Photo: Bernadette Burke

Yesterday was the first of a two-day barrage of bird calls at the Domestic Animals Pavilion for the Sydney Royal Cage Bird Show.

African lovebirds, budgerigars, and other colourful natives were among some of the diverse birds being judged.

Darcy Issanchon, 13, has been a steward at the Bird Show for two years and owns almost 500 finches. Yesterday she won Grand Champion Finch for the eighth year in a row. Darcy aspires to be a bird judge and says the key to a prize winning finch is looking after them properly.


A celebration of African culture Reply

by Susan Cheong

The Sierra Leone Cultural Performance Group entertains festival goers. Photo: Susan Cheong

“The Africulture Festival provides a place for new African Australians to find support services that may assist them in employment, accommodation and other essential areas for settlement,” says Andrew McBride, of the Auburn City Council.

The 4th Africulture Festival, held at Auburn Park on Saturday 17 March, was organized by members of the local community.

Mr McBride estimates over 4000 people attended the event to celebrate the rich heritage and diverse culture of Africa.