Readings are at the Wickham Park Hotel, corner of Maitland Road and Albert St, Wickham, commencing at 7.30pm.  All meetings include an open reading bracket.  Gold coin donation requested.


May 15 – Alex Stavropoulos

Alex has been involved with Poetry at the Pub since those days at the Grand Hotel in the dim distant past.  And yet he has never been guest poet.  Until now.  Alex’s poetry has a seam of humour running through it, and a sense of social justice.  As he says, he’s a legend in his own bathroom.


May 29 – Beth Spencer and Writers living with disabilities theme night

Sponsored by the Wicko

Beth Spencer is one of 28 poets featured in a new anthology due out this month called Shaping the Fractured Self: poetry of chronic illness and pain.

Beth will be supported by local poets Kerri Shying and Danny Gentile, and an AUSLAN interpreter for the deaf community with thanks to Octapod.

“Invisible and chronic illness and disability differs greatly from acute illness.

It slides along as the undercurrent, emerging in surprising places.”  – Kerri Shying

Beth Spencer is the author of Vagabondage (UWAP), The Party of Life (Flying Islands), How to Conceive of a Girl (Random House) and Things in a Glass Box (FIP). A selection of her ABC-Radio National sound and text pieces — including a feature on Poetica — were collected on the double CD, Body of Words (dogmedia).  Her awards include the Age Short Story Award, runner up for the Steele Rudd, the inaugural Dinny O’Hearn Fellowship, a Varuna Writers Fellowship, and several Literature Board fellowships from the Australia Council. She also has a PhD on ‘The Body as Fiction/Fiction as a Way of Thinking’ and a website at http://www.bethspencer.com

Kerri Shying was awarded a NSW Emerging Writers Grant for 2017 and has a Pocket Book in progress, with poems and short stories. She has had poems in Cordite, and in anthologies, the most recent being Blank Rune Press’s Love is so Short.  She is the peer supporter for the disability writing group Write-Up!

Danny Gentile has published in Meanjin, Cordite, Overland, Southerly and in the inaugural edition of Snap, a journal dedicated to work about and by people living with disabilities. His poems have been shortlisted for the Newcastle Poetry Prize on three occasions and also appear in the A Slow Combusting Hymn anthology. He is soon to take up a Poetry Residency at Maitland Regional Gallery as part of the Verses Project.


Upcoming program

June 19 – Jenny Blackford

Jenny’s degree was in Classics (Greek and Latin) at the University of Newcastle, before she took a 20-year detour into computer networking in Melbourne. Now back in Newcastle, she writes poetry and prose for people of all ages. Her poems and stories have appeared in Westerly, Going Down Swinging and Cosmos, as well as that venerable institution, The School Magazine. Her prizes include first place in the Humorous Verse section of the Henry Lawson awards 2014 and the Connemara Mussell Festival Poetry Competition 2016, third in the prestigious ACU Prize for Literature 2014, and two prizes in the Scartel Stiletto Short Story Awards 2016. Judy Johnson described The Duties of a Cat, an illustrated pamphlet of Jenny’s cat poems published by Pitt Street Poetry in 2013, as “a lovely, complex and thought provoking little poetry book.” Her first full-length poetry collection is The Loyalty of Chickens, also from Pitt Street Poetry, for readers 11 years to adult. http://www.jennyblackford.com


Poetry at the Pub is on the 3rd and 5th Mondays of the month. Mostly.


Information courtesy of PATP publicity

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What’s on at Pearl Beach

BIGGEST Morning Tea poster LL PDF_page_001Scholarship Poster 2017 FINAL PDF_page_001

Information and images courtesy of

Lynne Lillico

Pearl Beach Progress Assocation

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THE ART HOUSE: What’s on update

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Show it (tell it)

Friday June 2 12.30pm

The Art House Studio

Hear and learn firsthand from leading independent artists about how local personal and cultural stories are maintained, shared and interpreted through performance and arts including exchange and collaboration between indigenous and non-indigenous artists in our region – focussing specifically on the relevance of current dance and spoken word.

12.30: Storytelling and movement:

Darkinjung elder Gavi Duncan and Bundjalung and Wiradjuri independent artist Thomas E.S. Kelly share how they have worked within a broader collaboration to interpret local traditional stories with young people on the north Central Coast and how this relates to their individual practice and status as storykeepers.

2.20: Spoken Word, workshop and presentation by poet and publisher Janette Hoppe.

Register for free at


02 4335 1485


The Lounge Room presents

SpeakUP @ The Art House

With The Art House and Central Coast Council

Friday June 2 7PM

Tickets $10 from http://www.thearthousewyong.com.au/whats-on/speak-up-the-art-house

The Lounge Room with Central Coast Council and The Art House present SpeakUP at The Art House, a dynamic night of original spoken word, movement & rhythms.

Live, loud and dynamic, full of finger-snapping, toe tapping, soul-clapping, lip-smacking good vibes, SpeakUP at The Art House brings together an open mic for poets, a DJ spinning smooth beats and incredible feature artists.
Feature artists:

Janette Hoppe: Poet, Papatuanuku Press and The Poetry Bomb, Newcastle

Thomas E.S. Kelly: Bundjalung / Wiradjuri Independent Artist/ Dancer


Open Mic (limited availability – sign up at the door)

SpeakUP is a place for anyone and everyone to step up to the mic and tell their story, plus feature artists, DJ, live art & pop-up bar.

The Choreographer’s Community

The Second Annual Choreographers Community Showcase

Saturday 3 June

Tickets: $28.50-$33.50


The “Choreographer’s Community” is a wonderful event for the Central Coast dance industry. This innovative night is an opportunity for choreographers and dancers from the Central Coast to come together and celebrate the amazing performing & creative talent that live & work on the Central Coast.



NAISDA Dance College Presents

Ngangga Ya (Speaking to the Future)

Wednesday June 28-Friday June 30

Speaking to the Future: Our Futures. Our Storying through dance reflects the Storytelling of our heritages.

Our past informs our choices for a future path, however diverse.

We look to the stars and the stories of our elders that helped navigate their choices. We look to our youth and the language they speak to bring relevance to today’s directions.

In whatever our choice, we must acknowledge and honor our past, our elders and their struggles, for without this, we face a spiritually bereft future.

Director, Raymond D Blanco

In 2017, NAISDA Dance College will share inspirational stories of resilience, preservation and reawakening of cultural heritage, as told by the next generation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performers.

Proudly dancing on Darkinjung land, NAISDA Dance College is one of eight elite, national training organisations in the performing arts and is at the forefront of shaping Australia’s artistic and cultural talent.

Based at Kariong, NAISDA is bringing world-class entertainment to the Central Coast. NAISDA’s productions express our commitment to honour the world’s oldest living culture and share knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island dance, music, art and history with audiences from around the world.

Tickets: $17-$25



The Umbilical Brothers: Speedmouse

Saturday 19 August

Tickets: $44.90-$49.90

It’s legendary and it’s live. Direct from another off-Broadway season in New York and an appearance on the Colbert show, the Umbies’ most beloved show is back. The Sydney Morning Herald described it as “Marcel Marceau on really good drugs”. ‘Nuff said.

The Umbilical Brothers are an international comedy phenomenon who have so far won a couple of BAFTAs, an Emmy, the Critics’ Choice at Edinburgh Fringe and the Helpmann Award for Best Comedy Performers. They have performed in 37 countries with five different shows. Now they are returning home with one of their most beloved ones, Speedmouse.

Full of the stuff you love best, Speedmouse is a live action, fast paced, rewind, slow motion, frame-by-frame adventure where two men create the impossible out of a microphone and a unique physical ability that has no equal. Speedmouse has earned a bevy of five star reviews and numerous awards including best stage production and best international show, along with a multi-platinum DVD that is sold in every corner of the world.

Join them in celebrating the return of Speedmouse with a limited live theatrical run. If you haven’t seen this show live, you should. Really.


Art exhibitions:

Maliga Showcase 2017

26 May-4 June

Maliga (meaning Shine in Darkinjung) is an Indigenous Arts and Culture Showcase which commenced in 2014. The project has created a platform for young Indigenous people to share their own stories of cultural identity.

It is now in its fourth year and presents a multidisciplinary narrative of identity and connection to place in the visual, literary and performance arts. Maliga has engaged with local schools, youth services, cultural leaders and elders, and is open to all community to celebrate and acknowledge these stories.





Night’s Watch Parliament

7-30 July 2017

Come step inside The Art House and be transported into the hidden world of the Powerful, Barking, Grass, Masked and Sooty Owls. These nocturnal raptors will be there in full light.

Immerse your senses as you bathe in the sounds of these fascinating creatures, be visually transfixed on a variety of images and marvel as you discover more of how these beautiful threatened creatures live.

Join us for a discovery adventure, while you are immersed in the ways that we can assist to save these beautiful raptors and find out what is being done to ensure their longevity as urbanization drives them to the fringes of their habitats.

Register for FREE presentations by Wildlife ARC and the artists, Marta C. Lett & Therese Gabriel Wilkins. The Art House Wyong at 11am on the 11th, 13th or 19th July 2017. Email: wingedwoman@dodo.com.aumarta.lett@gmail.com

Exhibition open: Friday 7th to Sunday 30th July 2017, Monday to Friday 10am – 5.30pm, and during all Art House events on weekends.


Information and images courtesy of The Art House publicity.




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Dream about Flying to the Stars with Night

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The 5 Lands Experience is back for May. A regular monthly community event, at The Rhythm Hut in Gosford, each month, the 5 Lands Experience begins with a free community drum circle, at 5pm all ages and levels encouraged. Bring your own drum or have a go with ours! We’ll have loads of different percussion for everyone to try.


A well established, well known local band, the 5 Lands band has run for over 9 years around the Central Coast – from Terrigal, to Erina, to Gosford. Named after originally forming to perform at the popular Central Coast 5 Lands Walk in Terrigal, the ever changing line up of The 5 Lands Band, lead by Rendra Freestone, brings together some of the top musicians from the Central Coast, Sydney and Newcastle. The unique band doesn’t practice, nor write music together, but rather create improvised jams, based on funk, jazz, folk and groove. Well known for getting the dance floor filled, the 5 Lands Band kick off music at 6.30pm.





Feature artist this month is Night Kite

Forming in mid 2016, the girls from Night Kite came together from four different walks of musical life to create a unique and exciting sound.

Harnessing the power of four incredible vocalists: Susie Hurley, Amy Price, Vanessa Moussa and Keara Donohoe they weave intricate harmonies over rhythmic percussion, creating seductive and dynamic arrangements.


Their vast experience covers folk, gospel, country, opera, pop and soul, with each vocalist throwing their own distinct style into the songwriting melting pot.

Night Kite’s upwards trajectory has been swift, with the girls already collecting an impressive array of achievements. Quick to become regulars on the Sydney scene, they have held residencies at the Robin Hood Hotel, become favourites at The Rhythm Hut in Gosford, and support original live music by playing at local and underground events.


The girls recently wowed audiences in a coveted spot at the 2017 Tamworth Country Music Festival, playing three shows in the bustling hub of The Tamworth Hotel. In April 2017, Night Kite played at Bluesfest on the Busking stage after reaching through the coveted busking comp.


In January 2017 Night Kite released their first single, “Already Come Into My Heart”, kicking off a busy year that will see the girls headline The Rhythm Hut, continue on the festival circuit and work on recording their first album.



As a not for profit community space, The Rhythm Hut is dedicated to supporting the arts and music on The Central Coast, and this monthly event is open to the whole community, with entry by donation. Suitable and affordable for the whole family, patrons are encouraged to pay whatever they can afford to help keep this unique space running, and such events continuing on The Central Coast. Delicious home style cooked dinners and desserts are available for purchase. The Rhythm Hut is fully licensed with assorted beers, wines and ciders, including locally made Six String beers. Under 18 must be accompanied by a responsible adult.


WHAT: The 5 Lands Experience ft. The 5 Lands Band and Night Kite

WHEN: Sunday 28th May, 5pm

WHERE: The Rhythm Hut, 135 Faunce St, Gosford

COST: Entry by donation


Information and images courtesy of The Rhythm Hut publicity

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If you missed my spot on Meredith Gilmore’s Coast Arts radio show this month, you can listen online now at https://soundcloud.com/meredithgilmore/theatre-on-the-coast-segment-may-2017-as-broadcast-on-coast-arts-7517

As broadcast on Coast Arts radio program Sunday May 7  COAST FM 963 Gosford, Central Coast Community Radio.


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Childrens Hour Hoz flyer front

Wyong Drama Group’s upcoming production of ‘The Children’s Hour’ – a sweet childhood comedy? NOTHING could be further from the truth. When firebrand feminist Lillian Hellman wrote the play in 1934 she gave her dark story an ironic title – a suggestion that this is what might happen if children took control, unchecked by the wisdom that should come with maturity. She based the story on events which had taken place over a hundred years previously, but the story could well have been written yesterday. Audiences will find the story line disturbingly familiar.


Like many in Hollywood, Lillian Hellman and her partner, detective writer Dashiell Hammett, were blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee. No doubt Lillian had strong left-wing leanings, but in this play she raises a flag for Feminism decades before it was fashionable to do so. Her cast of 13 has one male character, 5 adult females and 7 girls between the ages of 11 and 14.


She examines prejudices which still hold sway in society today as two teachers at a girls school are accused of having a forbidden relationship. Strict censorship rules applied in US cinema The play was so controversial that it was not filmed until 1961 when it starred Audrey Hepburn and Shirley McLaine. Hopefully we are somewhat more broad-minded today but small town narrow thinking still infects today’s society. Gossip becomes fact overnight, people are guilty until proven innocent, trial by media wins out in our post-truth world.


Sally Bartley, most recently seen in WDG’s ‘Steel Magnolias’, and Kathryn Peterson (last appearing in GMS’ ‘Evita’) explore great emotional depths in the roles of Martha and Karen – two women who run a small boarding school for the daughters of wealthy families and who become the subject of malicious allegations.


Icons of Central Coast theatre, Pam Campbell (WDG’s ‘The Shoehorn Sonata’, ‘The Cemetery Club’) and Annie Bilton (seen recently in Woy Woy Little Theatre’s ‘When Dad Married Fury’) totally convince as the righteous society matriarch and the self-centred actress-turned-teacher whose blindness and insensitivity each contribute to the tragic unfolding of events.


Newcomer Bill Mifsud shines as Karen’s fiance, a voice of sanity amidst the madness, and Marta Cabarrus who debuted last year as Herta in WDG’s ‘Sepia Secrets’ brings commonsense and humanity to the role of Agatha.


Kay-lea Sims (last seen  in Jopuka Productions ’13 The Musical’) is truly frightening as Mary, every parent or teacher’s worst nightmare. Harmony Davies evokes sympathy as the major victim of her bullying. Chloe McWilliam (recently seen in Jopuka’s ‘Hating Alison Ashley’), Emma Peterson (recently in Wyong Musical Theatre Company’s ‘Oliver’), Jacinta Cormie, Jorden Hynes and Isabel Purser complete the ensemble of children whose self-devised scenes will entertain and amuse against the dark backdrop of unfolding events.


Direction is by Andy Kabanoff (recently seen in ‘When Dad Married Fury’ at Woy Woy and in his own play ‘Sepia Secrets’ at Wyong.) and Sally Bartley (‘Steel Magnolias’ for WDG).


‘The Children’s Hour’ runs from May 19th – 27th at The Grove, North Rd, Wyong. Details can be found on the Wyong Drama Group website. Bookings are now open


Phone: 1300 665 600   or Online:     wyongdramgroup.com. au


Please join us to be entertained and confronted by this timeless theatrical triumph.

Childrens Hour Hoz flyer back.jpg

Information and images courtesy of WDG publicity

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