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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Picturing Busy Life Of Elizabeth Taylor

ELIZABETH Taylor with the Oscar she won for
Best Actress in 1967 in "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"
IN his continuing search for the more weird and wondrous in this world, David Ellis says a fascinating collection of photographs of legendary actress Elizabeth Taylor – many of which have never been publicly shown before – has just opened at London's Getty Images Gallery to raise funds for her Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF.)

Founded in 1985, the Foundation has in 30 years distributed millions of dollars to some 700 AIDS organisations in 37 countries around the world.

Many of the images at the just-opened London exhibition provide little-known insights into the actress, who was tireless both in her working and behind-the-scenes private lives. They include one taken at Epsom Racecourse in England in 1957 of Taylor with third husband, film producer Mike Todd, together with "best of friends" actress Debbie Reynolds and her then-husband, singer Eddie Fisher.

Mike Todd was the only one of Elizabeth Taylor's seven husbands that she did not divorce… he beat her to it by dying in a plane crash in New Mexico in 1958, and a year later singer Fisher suddenly walked out on Debbie Reynolds to marry Taylor (who by then, we would suspect, was anything but Debbie's "best of friends.")

CONVOLUTED: Elizabeth Taylor with then-husband Mike Todd
followed by singer Eddie Fisher and his then-wife actress Debbie Reynolds.
After Todd died in a plane crash in 1958, Fisher suddenly divorced Reynolds to marry Taylor.
The Elizabeth Taylor photographic exhibition is open until November 7 at the Getty Images Gallery, 46 Eastcastle Street, that's close to Oxford Circus in Central London. Entry is free, with a percentage from sales of images on show going to ETAF.

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(Photos Getty Images Gallery)



Friday, October 2, 2015

Record Southern Highlands Tulip Time in Bowral


 IN his continuing search for the more weird and wondrous in this world, David Ellis says a record over-38,000 people flocked to this year's NSW Southern Highlands Tulip Time Festival… almost four times the population of the little town of Bowral in which the annual event has been held every Spring for 55 years.

A CORNER of the crowd during the Southern Highlands Tulip Time Festival that this year attracted more than 38,000 visitors over 13 days. (Destination Southern Highlands)
And they spent a whopping $7m-plus in Bowral and the Highlands' other major centres of Mittagong and Moss Vale and surrounding historic villages – making the fortnight-long Festival now the biggest event in regional NSW south of Sydney.

Centre-piece was Bowral's Corbett Gardens with an extraordinary 100,000 tulips and 20,000 flowering annuals, while many public parks throughout the Highlands were also ablaze with colourful flowering bulbs and annuals, and numerous private gardens – some on acreages surrounding grand mansions – also open to visitors.

Event Co-Ordinator with Destination Southern Highlands, Debbie Pearce credited the success of this year's Tulip Time to an expanded range of events and activities alongside the actual garden displays. These included musical performances across both weekends of the Festival, the always-popular Tulip Time Street Parade, an open-air Cinema@Sunset, a Music in the Gardens evening, children's pantomime, a bar with local cheeses, wines and cider, street markets, and an exceptionally popular Dogs Day Out.

"And the introduction of easily-identified volunteer 'Greeters' at Corbett Gardens this year to assist visitors with local information and directions, enhanced the overall visitor experience," Ms Pearce said.

Next year's Southern Highlands Tulip Time Festival will be held in Bowral from September 13 to 25 2016.
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