Goodbye 2019, we hardly knew ye! One minute, it was all heatwaves and holidays. The next minute, Simone Biles was doing triple-double backflips and Prince Archie was high-fiving Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Yes, in 2019, the news once again outpaced our ability to keep up with it. But with our annual Show of the Year we'll relive the past 12 months in all their horror (Notre Dame!) and glory (Bluey!)
What a year. Protests shook Hong Kong, the Amazon caught fire and children led a worldwide climate strike. Boris Johnson picked up the prime ministerial ball as it came loose from the back of the scrum, Scott Morrison baseball-capped his way back into government, and Trump impeachment talk turned to (some) action.
We said goodbye to towering figures in literature and politics, including Toni Morrison, Bob Hawke, Les Murray and Mary Oliver. And we farewelled meowing figures of the internet. (R.I.P. Grumpy Cat.)
There were the mandatory Big Cultural Moments, too: someone (no spoilers) finally won the Game of Thrones, Fleabag stormed the Emmys, and a Sydney real estate video went viral. Beyoncé came home, Fyre Festival blew up (again) and Lil Nas X shot to stardom via TikTok. Ah yes, how could we forget: TikTok.
So as the decade turns, we’ll be remembering 2019 in style – with host Casey Bennetto and a glittering line-up of writers, comedians and musicians, including Paul Kelly, Louise Milligan, Nath Valvo and The Merindas.
Casey Bennetto is an award-winning writer, musician and radio broadcaster. He wrote the musical KEATING!, hosts the program Superfluity on Melbourne’s 3RRR, and has appeared in places as diverse as ABCTV’s Spicks and Specks, the Melbourne International Arts Festival and the Festival of Dangerous Ideas at Sydney Opera House.
Louise Milligan is an investigative reporter for ABC TV Four Corners and author of Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of George Pell, which won the Walkley Award and broke massive international news about Cardinal George Pell’s crimes against children, for which he was later convicted and imprisoned. Louise was a witness in his court case.
Paul Kelly has recorded over 25 albums, several film soundtracks and published a self-described ‘mongrel memoir’, How To Make Gravy, in an influential career spanning four decades. He was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 1997. In 2017, he was appointed as an officer of the Order of Australia His latest release is ‘Nature’.
The Merindas are a Contemporary R&B/Electropop duo that present a much anticipated show never seen before on the Australian music scene. They're the synthesis of warrior queen, bringing an on-trend style of rhythmic, expressive and beautiful music dedicated to the preservation of Indigenous language and culture in a modern form.
The Merindas are Candice Lorrae of Jawoyn and Thursday Islander heritage (born Darwin NT) and Nyoongar Ballardong Whadjuk woman Kristel Kickett (from Tammin WA). They discovered their mutual passion for music in Perth more than 7 years ago. Now based in Melbourne, these soul sisters are set to trail-blaze their innovative style of Indigenous music.
Bill Shorten is the Shadow Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, the Shadow Minister for Government Services, and was leader of the Australian Labor Party from 2013 to 2019.
Nath Valvo’s hilariously physical, high-energy comedy is impressing critics and winning crowds across the globe. Not many comedians can boast that their fan base includes TV royalty, but Nath has the tweet from Graham Norton to prove it.
Laura Jean is a musician from Melbourne, Australia.
Sista Zai Zanda is a storyteller, educator and curator of the Pan Afrikan Poets Cafe – an Afro-Literary matinée of beats, performance and poetry. Since 2015, Zai has spoiled audiences in Melbourne and Sydney with over 100 performances by African and First Nations storytellers including feature performances by renowned international artists Mahogany L Browne (NYC, Nuyorican Poets Cafe), Inua Ellams (Nigeria/UK), Kat François (Trinidad/UK) and Jive Poetic (NYC).
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