Young Labor parties and the bill, please
NOW that Julia Gillard has her house in order, it's over to Victorian Young Labor for some housekeeping. In dispute is a $1000-plus Christmas drinks tab that was allegedly paid for from money donated by MPs, unions and lobbying firm Hawker Britton, which is part-owned by former minister David White (pictured). A document that landed on my desk alleges Young Labor president Michael de Bruyn and junior vice-president Kali Watson did a factional deal based on paying the tab at a Carlton pub from money donated to the group for the production of its Beacon magazine. When word reached a displeased Hawker Britton director, Danny Pearson, he emailed another Young Labor member to say that if its funds were used for the knees-up, "I would like to express my profound disappointment" and the company would be "reconsidering supporting Victorian Young Labor in the future". De Bruyn is the son of Joe de Bruyn, the national secretary of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees' Association, and is a staffer of Kororoit MP Marlene Kairouz. Yesterday, Michael told me the bar tab issue would be resolved at next Thursday's executive meeting, "there are no dramas" and the bill did not exceed $1000. "No Young Labor money was spent on drinks," he insisted. Michael's Facebook page features a Labor legend who loves a beer, Bob Hawke. Watson also said the funds were not used. It's best if the young 'uns BYO their drinks from now on.
NY, London, Paris, Footscray
INTERNATIONAL chefs du jour Fergus Henderson, Anthony Bourdain and Thomas Keller star in a spectacular 14-metre portrait with Australian chefs to mark the 20th anniversary of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival but what the eye doesn't see is the overseas stars were photographed in their countries and digitally added. The snapper was Ellis Parrinder, and digital artist Rufina Breskin did the rest. Aussies Neil Perry, George Calombaris, Stephanie Alexander, Guy Grossi and Jacques Reymond posed in a Footscray warehouse and there's no Shannon Bennett or Ben Shewry because they were unable to make the shoot (and no, it wasn't an option to digitally add them). The photo, MasterClass in Portrait, was the concept of creative director Christian Wagstaff and executive producer Keith Courtney from Creative Production Services and is on show at Queensbridge Square, Southbank. Bravo for putting Footscray on the world map.
Rebecca's frock around the clock
IT'S a glamorous life for Rebecca Judd (pictured) after being the belle of the ball in her J'Aton gown while hosting the red-carpet arrivals at the Allan Border Medal. Tonight, she's starring in Myer's fashion extravaganza at Mural Hall with Jennifer Hawkins, Kris Smith and Jessica Hart, who arrived from NY yesterday. Members of the public who didn't make the VIP guest list with 450 chosen ones will be able to gape at the red-carpet arrivals in the Bourke Street Mall. Myer chief Bernie Brookes will hobnob with Sid Myer and wife Fiona, Robyn Baillieu (wife of Ted), Harry Kewell and wife Sheree Murphy and designers Aurelio Costarella, Bettina and Teresa Liano and Toni Maticevski, who will close the show with his heavenly creations. The parade is styled on the store's autumn/winter campaign that was shot in the wheat fields of Narrandera in the Riverina, but after Mural Hall was restored to its art deco glory, it won't be transformed into the outback.
Dreyfus hosts world premiere
COMPOSER George Dreyfus premieres his new score, Symphony No. 3, on Sunday but already deserves a standing ovation. He said: "Mozart was seven when he wrote his third symphony, Beethoven was 34 (the Eroica) and I am/was 83 when I concocted mine, an amalgam of Goethe's Faust with Spanish Civil War Song." The concert at the Hawthorn Town Hall starts at 2.30pm and is free, apart from the gold coin donation. Dreyfus sees it this way: "What is a gold coin to that end of town?"