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April 27, 2015

Nepal earthquake advice and list of aid agencies

Lucire staff/11.35

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The horrors of the earthquake in Nepal will be known to most readers by now, with the latest death toll at 3,700 at the time of writing.
   It has hit home more as one of the juniors on our team, Kayla Newhouse, was in Kathmandu on Saturday, and remains there with water and food at the American Club, and is one of the fortunate ones. We have very sporadic telephone and wifi contact with her, and those with loved ones there are urged to keep cellphone contact to a minimum as battery-charging is hard to come by.
   The barest reports we have directly received is that the area is ‘like a war zone’, and that only 20 per cent of scheduled flights are still going ahead.
   Please consider donating to some of the organizations undertaking relief efforts in Nepal or collecting money for them. Some of the below have been compiled by The New York Times.

Oxfam New Zealand—direct donation page
Oxfam USA—direct donation page
UNICEF
UNICEF New Zealand—direct donation page
UNICEF USA—donation page
United Nations World Food Programme—direct donation page
Save the Children—direct donation page
Médécins sans Frontières—links to donation pages
Doctors Without Borders
World Vision
Red Cross
American Jewish World Service
The Salvation Army USA
International Medical Corps
Handicap International
PayPal
Mercy Corps
Catholic Relief Services
Habitat for Humanity International
Global Giving
The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
Samaritan’s Purse
CARE
Lutheran World Relief
The Jewish Federations of North America
SOS: Children’s Villages International
MAP International

   Our latest syndicated news report (in Italian, from Euronews) is below.

   Jost Kobusch filmed the video below (with understandably strong language) from the Everest Base Camp, when an avalanche hit on Saturday. He and his friend ran for their lives as rock and ice came down the mountain.

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April 24, 2015

Jacob’s Creek introduces Double Barrel range—red wines aged in whisky barrels—in New Zealand

Lucire staff/22.03

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Jacob’s Creek’s new Double Barrel range has made it across the Tasman, with Kiwis now able to sample chief winemaker Bernard Hickin’s successful concept of finishing wine in aged whisk(e)y barrels, the reverse of ageing whisky in old wine barrels. He believes that this hasn’t been done before, and the company has opted to use Scotch whisky and Irish whiskey barrels that had held their contents for up to 20 years.
   â€˜I wanted to express the character of the whisky barrel but not make it taste like whisky. I figured that, if you wanted something to taste like whisky, you would drink a whisky,’ says Hickin.
   They begin their ageing in traditional French and American oak wine barrels first before being transferred to the whisk(e)y ones, hence the name.
   As far as we can tell, he’s succeeded. The 2012 first vintage Barossa shiraz, finished in Scotch barrels, is smoother while the 2012 first vintage Coonawarra cabernet sauvignon, in the Irish whiskey ones, has a stronger aroma.
   The process has taken Jacob’s Creek two years to perfect, says the company.
   Jacob’s Creek Double Barrel goes on sale at leading liquor retailers throughout New Zealand from May 2015, priced at NZ$24·99.

       
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Filed under: living, Lucire, New Zealand, Paris
April 22, 2015

The Royal Ballet announces its 2015–16 programme, including four world premières

Lucire staff/22.32

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Above Steven McRae as Florizel in Christopher Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale, which will be revived for the Royal Ballet’s 2015–16 season. Photograph copyright ©2014 by Johan Persson.


Above Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet, performed in 1965. Photograph copyright ©1965 by Leslie E. Spatt.

The Royal Ballet has announced its 2015–16 season under its director, Kevin O’Hare, with four world premières, including the first main-stage, full-length narrative ballet by artist-in-residence Liam Scarlett based on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein; new one-act ballets from resident choreographer Wayne McGregor and artistic associate Christopher Wheeldon; and a new production of Carmen by principal guest artist Carlos Acosta.
   The first production of the season is Kenneth MacMillan’s production of Romeo and Juliet, originally created in 1965 for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable, and performed by Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev at its première, which famously met with 43 curtain calls. It is the first work in the Royal Opera House Live Cinema Season for 2015–16.
   Acosta’s new adaptation of Carmen is set to the Bizet score with a new arrangement by Martin Yates. Acosta will dance the Don José and Escamillo roles at certain performances. Tim Hatley is behind the set and costume designs, and Peter Mumford has created the lighting. Scarlett’s Viscera, Jerome Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun and George Balanchine’s Tchaikovsky pas de deux form the rest of the mixed programme, and part of the ROH Live Cinema Season.
   McGregor’s Raven Girl will be revived in October in a double bill with Alastair Marriott’s Connectome. In May 2016, McGregor premières a one-act ballet set to Nyx, a one-movement orchestral work by Esa-Pekka Salonen. The programme also features a revival of MacMillan’s The Invitation.
   In February 2016, the company premières a new ballet by Wheeldon set to a commissioned score by Mark-Antony Turnage, alongside a mixed programme featuring After the Rain and Within the Golden Hour. Designs are by Bob Crowley and lighting by Natasha Chivers.
   Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale will stage its first revival in April 2016. The original was nominated for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance and won the Critics’ Circle Award for Best Classical Choreography. It has also been nominated for a South Bank Sky Arts Award for Dance.
   Scarlett’s full-length narrative ballet based on Frankenstein premières in May 2016, with a score by Lowell Liebermann with designs by John Macfarlane and lighting by David Finn. It will be broadcast live to cinemas on May 18, 2016.
   Mixed programmes of Frederick Ashton’s work will feature this season, the first being The Two Pigeons, created in 1961 for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable, appearing in November 2014, alongside Monotones I and II, set to Erik Satie’s Trois Gnossiennes and Trois Gymnopédies. It returns in January 2016 in a second double-bill alongside Rhapsody, created by Ashton for Lesley Collier and Mikhail Baryshnikov in honour of the Queen Mother on the occasion of her 80th birthday. It will be shown in cinemas on January 26, 2015.
   Peter Wright’s production of The Nutcracker, with design by Julia Trevelyan Oman, will be the Royal Ballet’s Christmas programme, while Wright’s Giselle returns in February.
   A summer tour to Japan is planned for 2016.
   As part of the Royal Ballet’s Linbury Studio Theatre programme, the Royal New Zealand Ballet is set to tour in the UK in November 2015, making its Royal Opera House début, performing a mixed programme, including a world première by Andrew Simmons. UK audiences will be delighted to see Anatomy of a Passing Cloud by Javier de Frutos, Selon Désir by Andonis Foniadakis, and Passchendaele by Neil Ieremia.
   Others to be hosted include Cas Public, which also makes a début at Linbury, presenting Symphonie Dramatique, inspired by Romeo and Juliet, and coinciding with the Royal Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet on the main stage.
   The Phoenix Dance Theatre will perform Until.With/Out.Enough, choreographed by Itzik Galili, a co-commission by the Royal Ballet. The company’s artistic director Sharon Watson will present TearFall in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust, exploring the complexities of crying, and Caroline Finn’s Bloom examines ‘a surreal universe with tragi-comic characters.’
   Former Royal Ballet and American Ballet Theatre principal Alessandra Ferri will make her Linbury début in Chéri, directed and choreographed by Martha Clarke, and inspired by the novella by Colette. Chéri will feature American Ballet Theatre principal Herman Cornejo.
   Will Tuckett’s Elizabeth will make its Linbury début, based on the life of Queen Elizabeth I, and featuring Carlos Acosta and Zenaida Yanowsky, set to a score by Martin Yates, derived from Elizabethan compositions by Dowland, Tallis and Morley.
   Keon Kessels succeeds Barry Wordsworth as music director; Wordsworth becomes principal guest conductor.
   Further information can be found at the Royal Opera House’s website at www.roh.org.uk.

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April 16, 2015

News in brief: Christina Perriam returns to ID; Preciosa, Johny Dar collaborate; Nana Judy’s pre-Coachella do

Lucire staff/14.26

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Camilla Rutherford

Perriam, the luxury merino label from Christina Perriam, will show at ID Dunedin Fashion Week next week. The event begins on April 18 and runs to April 26. The last time she showed was under the Christina Perriam label in 2002.
   Her autumn–winter 2015 collection is structured and edgy, using New Zealand-sourced merino wool mixed with other fabrics and textiles, including merino leather. ‘It’s an amazing texture that you simply don’t find in deer pelts. When you look at a merino sheep, their skin is so wrinkly and that’s why the texture of the leather is really interesting,’ says Perriam.
   Preciosa, the Czech crystal brand HQed in the famed town of Jablonec nad Nisou, has collaborated with Ohio-born designer Johny Dar, known for his extravagant art, on a work called The Queen of Pearls. The sculpture features Preciosa crystals and took Dar 300 hours to complete. The company says it has been valued at €927,000.
   Finally, we learn that one of the “pre-parties” for Coachella, on April 9, was hosted by Australian streetwear label Nana Judy, partnering with One Oak nightclub, Tinder, and Up and Down, at the Château at Lake La Quinta. Celebrity names attending included Joe Jonas, Leonardo DiCaprio, Josh Henderson, Kendall Jenner, skateboarder Corbin Harris and model–blogger Mimi Elashiry.











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The Body Shop’s Fuji Green Tea range: satisfying at every level, from bath tea to cologne

Lucire staff/12.55

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Top The Body Shop’s Fuji Green Tea range. Above The pièce de résistance of the range: the bath tea. Below left The huge bargain of them all: an eau de cologne that’s comparable to something twice the price.

The Body Shop’s latest Fuji Green Tea range, on sale in New Zealand from Monday, April 20, is one of the best the company has offered, and we’re not exaggerating. For starters, the full, fruity smells that we’ve become accustomed to with its earlier special editions is gone, replaced by a pure, healthy, subtler green tea scent. Now, there’s nothing wrong with the fruity and even chocolatey approaches of the Body Shop, but it’s great to see they have more secrets up their sleeves that they are gradually showing off to the public. Secondly, the methods the Body Shop has taken with the Fuji Green Tea range are very different: it has taken a uniquely eastern approach, combining tradition and authenticity with the Body Shop’s socially responsible aims.
   Green tea has antioxidant qualities, and we’re used to drinking it for its health benefits, but the Body Shop takes this idea further. Going into Japanese tradition, it found that women even bathed in it, and it’s believed to tighten pores help skin retain moisture, and have anti-ageing qualities.
   Sourcing authentic green tea from Mt Fuji, the Body Shop has developed an entire range featuring just what its customers expect: body scrub (250 ml, NZ$44·95); body butter (200 ml, NZ$36·95); body lotion (250 ml, NZ$24·95); body wash (250 ml, NZ$16·50); eau de cologne (100 ml, NZ$39·95); and exfoliating soap (100 g, NZ$19). However, the pièce de résistance has to be the bath tea, 300 g of goodness for detoxing and cleansing for NZ$64, allowing you soak those stresses away in Japanese fashion.
   With a metal container evoking a traditional tea tin, the bath tea comes with an infuser. Pour in the mixture of crystals and tea leaves, and let the water run over it. The water turns a nice green hue, and it smells great. A soak is indeed calming and soothing, leaving skin feeling healthy. You know the ritual—as fun as it is going through it—has a practical side, too.
   We sampled the body scrub as well, which is particularly effective, and only requires small quantities to work its magic.
   That feeling continues afterwards with the body butter for 24-hour hydration—the Body Shop suggests that the body lotion would be ideal for lighter hydration, and the Body Sorbet (200 ml, NZ$26) is a fresh alternative.
   The bath tea may be the pièce de résistance, but the surprises don’t stop: the eau de cologne is the icing on the proverbial cake. It’s actually a light, fruity floral, although you can detect the green tea mixed in among the top notes; the floral heart is very memorable and fresh. The Body Shop says it’s bergamot, lemon and mandarin that we detect there, and camellia, jasmine and violet in the middle. It’s actually a very elegant scent, something you would expect wearing a far more expensive label, and, like the rest of the Green Tea line, it’s a bargain. It’s not often a $40 scent smells like something that’s commonly twice or thrice the price.
   As a range, it’s one of the most complete and satisfying the Body Shop has offered.
   The Body Shop Fuji Green Tea range will be available online and at New Zealand retail outlets from next week.

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News in brief: Living Nature revives skin; Desigual, Alexa Meade team up; Cole Haan searches for the American Dream

Lucire staff/7.51

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From issue 34: Living Nature’s Skin Revive Exfoliant is a wonderful addition to the range that’s known for its 100 per cent certified natural ingredients (by BDIH in Germany), its safety on skin, and its ban on animal testing. There’s a nice scent here—as with Living Nature’s products, it’s not overbearing—along with gentle jojoba and candelilla beads that lift dead cells from the skin, stimulating renewal. Being natural, there will not be any damage to the skin and they’re biodegradable, unlike the plastic microbeads that make their way into the oceans. The hero ingredient, kumerahou, is rich in phytosaporins and provides antimicrobial protection. More at www.livingnature.com.
   Celebrating World Art Day on Wednesday, Desigual teamed up with artist Alexa Meade, who has painted on to the set of a photo shoot, including the models and the bags themselves. The company says it chose Meade as a collaborator because of her unconventional, edgy approach. She has painted on three scenarios as part of the collaboration.
   Another recent collaboration has been between Cole Haan and Happy Marshall Productions, on a film production called The American Dream Project. It partnered with FilmBuff to première the series on April 15, with Amazon, Dailymotion, Google Play, Apple Itunes, Ora TV, Vessel, Vimeo and YouTube, examining whether the American Dream still exists across the US and what it looks like today.
   British-born, New York-based filmmaker James Marshall and American photographer Todd Williams were armed with $250, travelling from New York to California through 15 states on Indian motorcycles, exchanging their work for food and shelter, and getting to know the people on the way. They stopped in eight towns and cities en route. ‘The generosity and kindness of the complete strangers I met has stuck with me the most. We are constantly told how dangerous it is out there and how different we are from each other. My experience was that people are mostly generous, kind and we have more in common than not,’ said Marshall.
   The trailer can be found at ColeHaan.com/americandream; the entire series can be found here and each episode also appears embedded below.

Episode 1: Braddock, Pa.

Braddock: Courage & Rebuilding from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 2: Rendville, Ohio

Rendville: Working Together from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 3: St Louis, Mo.

St Louis: Equality, Appreciation from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 4: Iowa, part 1

Iowa: Part 1, Live to Fight Another Day from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 5: Iowa, part 2

Iowa: Part 2, American-made, American Pride from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 6: Wyoming

Wyoming: Faith & Resilience from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 7: Taos, NM

Taos: Innovation from FilmBuff on Vimeo

Episode 8: Los Angeles, Calif.

Los Angeles: Life Philosophy from FilmBuff on Vimeo

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April 14, 2015

Goodness and Noa Noa welcome the winter blues

Lucire staff/5.56

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Nikita Brown Photography

When the scene gets quiet, you can always trust our own fashion and beauty editor, Sopheak Seng, to helm a show to get things buzzing again. In collaboration with Goodness, which was the first out of the gate at a two-label show at Caffè l’Affaré last Thursday, Wellington fashionistas and guests escaped the first wintry blasts for one of the more memorable social events on the calendar.
   Goodness’s Chris Hales, whose boutiques have been selling fashionable and sometimes harder-to-find independent designers for some time, launched her own range to complement the likes of Loobie’s Story, Kowtow, Nyne and Deborah Sweeney some time ago, but this was the first catwalk outing that Lucire witnessed. And she understands her customer well: casual separates, paired in unexpected ways, tapping in to the floral trend that’s been forecast for autumn–winter 2015. Taupe and olive similarly conveyed the winter vibe, right on time for the colder months Down Under.
   The second half of the show, styled by Lucire’s Sopheak Seng, showcased Danish label Noa Noa, with a winter collection ‘inspired by the tapestry of life,’ says Seng. Trawling through the markets in France to the bazaars in Marrakech—not unlike our last few print editions, then—the eclectic collection saw masculine lines meeting feminine fabrications, tied with the first half of the show through floral motifs in forest green, Moroccan blue, and tawny red. Sunglasses were donned by each of the models, resplendent in jackets and coats, looking cool as they wandered down the catwalk, much as the designers would have wandered through those bazaars.
   Live music from Ophelia, the indie folk–dubstep duo of Patrick Shanahan and Alex Louise, served as the unique soundtrack to both shows, cranking up the non-mainstream vibe of the show, while in the café, itself one of the trendy spots of the capital, sponsors served up Triple Rock vodka (the jaffa and liquorice varieties were very memorable), Colombo wines, Moa cider, and l’Affarè coffee itself. Clinique did the make-up, Chop created the hair looks using Kevin Murphy, and Rydges were credited with their support for the band. Shoes were from Shoe Connection. Finally, Gazley’s support was very evident with four stylish Alfa Romeo Giuliettas parked outside and a MiTo on the catwalk, upping the Euro credentials with Italian chic. The blue lights shining on the walls surrounding the catwalk served to remind us that one can, indeed, stay warm with the winter blues!






Nikita Brown Photography

Backstage



Nikita Brown Photography

The Scene











Nikita Brown Photography

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Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Salute, commemorating the centenary of World War I, to première May 22

Lucire staff/0.45

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Ross Brown

Above Dancer Joseph Skelton.

One of the most anticipated ballets from the Royal New Zealand Ballet, since news of it was announced in 2014, will première in Wellington on May 22. Salute, which comprises four dance works to mark the centenary of World War I, will tour Christchurch, Dunedin, Hamilton, Takapuna, Auckland and Napier after its performances in the capital.
   â€˜This powerful programme themed around war, loss and hope is our tribute to those men and women who sacrificed so much, many of whom were the same ages as our young dancers,’ said RNZB artistic director Francesco Ventriglia.
   The company will be joined for three of the four works by the New Zealand Army Band, which will perform, among others, a new commission by composer Gareth Farr. The Band will tour with the RNZB to every venue.
   â€˜This dynamic mixed bill includes: a twentieth century masterpiece by legendary Czech choreographer Jiří Kylián; two world premières created for the company by NZ choreographers Andrew Simmons and Neil Ieremia; and the NZ première of a work by Johan Kobborg,’ said Ventriglia.
   â€˜Watching the four works taking shape is very exciting, and profoundly moving. I really believe this programme will resonate with all New Zealanders,’ said RNZB managing director Amanda Skoog.
   Soldiers’ Mass, by Czech choreographer Jiří Kylián with music by Bohuslav Martinů, is a commentary on the destructiveness of war, and is performed by 12 male dancers. It was originally created for Nederlands Dans Theater in 1980 and was first performed by the RNZB in 1998.
   New Zealand-born Andrew Simmons’ Dear Horizon is a new commission and his fifth for the company, and features a specially commissioned score by Farr, written for the New Zealand Army Band and cellist Rolf Gjelsten of the New Zealand String Quartet. Simmons’ Of Days was highly regarded by Lucire, and he had earlier created Through to You and A Song in the Dark. Now based in Dresden, he was formerly a dancer with the RNZB.
   Neil Ieremia, founder of Black Grace, has created Passchendaele for the RNZB, named for the battle in which more New Zealanders were killed and wounded than in any other. This World War I battle claimed the lives of some 600,000 on both sides of the conflict. This second première in Salute was inspired by music composed by former New Zealand Army Band member Dwayne Bloomfield.
   Finally, Johan Kobborg’s Salute, with music by Hans Christian Lumbye specially arranged for the New Zealand Army Band, should end the evening on a more light-hearted note, dealing with cadets who have not experienced war. Kobborg collaborated with Ethan Stiefel on the RNZB’s highly acclaimed Giselle, and created the comedic ballet Les Lutins.
   Salute has been supported by the Lottery Grants Board, New Zealand Defence Force, Qantas, the Göthe-Institut, the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, national sponsor Vodafone, and Pub Charity.
   Dates for Salute are May 22–4 in Wellington; May 28–30 in Christchurch; June 3 in Dunedin; June 10 in Hamilton; June 13 in Takapuna; June 17–20 in Auckland; and June 24–5 in Napier.
   Further information can be found on the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s website at rnzb.org.nz.

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