Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Biggest and Meanest Website

It isn't very pretty yet, but we are sure it will be when the site proper is launched. Until then... keep up to speed with all the dribbles and droplets of information right here on Muddy Leaks. We have our ears to the ground and our backs to the wall and our fingers at the ready to pull out any number of cliches to get the message out there into cyberspace.

We can NOT EXCLUSIVELY reveal that MUDfest will be running frtom 18th-28 August 2011.

Follow the link yourself and see, the intial concept artwork. Rumour (not Willis) has it that the site might be up and running and fuctioning 100 days out from MUDfest.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

An Alternative Solution, Perhaps?

"The Academic Board sits to interview the last possible candidate for the position of Vice Chancellor. Enter Glyn Davis (Nick Masters), Rock Star Academic of Melbourne University. From the sellout musical written by Fregmonto Stokes, Directed by Richard Pettifer, with music by Angus Leslie and Ben Kiley in Union House Theatre - see"

It's an oldie - all the way back from 2008, but still as glorious as ever. Enjoy!

What is the "Melbourne Experience" worth?

On a more serious note, it is indicative of the state of the tertiary education sector that a student operated and run arts festival (MUDfest) goes from a budget of approx. $73, 000 to absolutely nil. ie: 0.

[It is true that the efforts of students involved have managed to ensure a smaller level of funding from some sources but this post in not about that epic journey.]

It would do the University of Melbourne good to realise that the perfect University is not one without students for it is the students and staff that make up a University. A lot of time is invested in promoting campus as a vibrant and exciting place to be but what makes it that? It is not the presence of shops etc. It is the people and the culture that forms around these people that is important. Specifically in this case of MUDfest, we are taking creative people.

Numbers. Student numbers. We all get one, and yet we are surprisingly much, much more than that. Students who come to Melbourne University expecting the "Melbourne Experience" do not necessarily crave the sanitised quotes on screens in a student centre. But they might love theatre, or art, or music. They might love to read, they might just might want to get involved in sharing their passion with others. Dreaming Larger is not about hoarding away the pennies it is about facilitating student programs and initiatives. Proposing to cancel the primary arts festival on campus was a disgrace. And it remains so. A key witness to this manoeuvring remarked that the cause for the funding withdrawal related to previous budget over-spending. This may be the case, but surely the way forward is to work with student representatives to ensure they know how to work within a set budget rather than removing it altogether.

Lilly Pads are famous plants, we inspired Claude Monet and we adorn your mugs and place-mats, but even we do not have a magical solution for money shortages in the tertiary sector. The only thing we can suggest is working  with students and not against them.

Money Makes the World Go Round

Money Makes the World Go Round, the world go round. Money Makes the World Go Round, that clinking clanking sound! That makes the world go roooooouuuuuunnnnnnndddd.

It's strange isn't it, dear University how much the lines of a Cabaret set in 1930s Berlin have such resonance with the way one conducts business today. An Oscar Winning Cabaret no-less?! One that was performed (albeit in a different form) in Union House Theatre but Queens College in 2009. Ah, 2009 a year when there was money around...

If you happen to rich
And you feel like a night's entertainment
You can pay for a gay escapade.
If you happen to be rich and alone
And you need a companion
You can ring (ting-a-ling) for the maid.
If you happen to be rich
And you find you are left by your lover,
And you moan and you groan quite a lot
You can take it on the chin,
Call a cab and begin to recover
On your 14-karat yacht! WHAT!?

Everything was bright (well quite) and there was budgets. Yes, budgets! For arts! For Students! And then... it all changed. Well, lots of things changed really. Cost cutting further under cutbacks for the Union. Everything has a new price, a new connotation.

When you haven't any coal in the stove
And you freeze in the winter
And you curse to the wind at your fate.
When you haven't any shoes on your feet,
Your coat's thin as paper,
And you look 30 pounds underweight
When you go to get a word of advice
From the fat little pastor,
He will tell you to love evermore.
But when hunger comes to rap,
rat-a-tat rat-a-tat at the window
*knock knock* (at the window)
Who's there? (hunger) oh, hunger!!
See how love flies out the door...

And so in late 2010 according to Insider Sources within the Darkside of the Union/Onion (as opposed to the Force) it came to pass that all the money would become no money.

No money at all.

[do stay tuned for more hard-hitting musical theatre journalism, and proper information too: * jazz hands*] 

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Overheard In Onion House

Overheard in the extensive Melbourne University Co-Op queue:

"Not sure if this is terribly efficient."
"We find it works quite well for us."

Something Fishy.

What is Muddy Leaks?

Muddy Leaks is UNofficial, UNabashed, UNrepentant, as you might have guessed from the repeated slogan around the site we are also fond of the UN prefix.

In the land that is Melbourne, the home-town of the one and only Julian Assange we are providing a new platform for information. Our pond might be a little bit smaller, but the depths of MUDfest 2011 are no less murky than the wider politics of the world. One often takes for granted the benevolence of a pretty picture but dip your hand into the inviting looking pool and you might feel a little residue of filth. This year, the fact the MUDfest 2011 is even occurring is extra pretty because of the insidious dealings behind the scenes. Out of this dirty, sloppy, muddy sludge there comes Muddy Leaks who is tasked with sharing what is underneath the surface with those looking in.

Muddy Leaks is headed up by Lilly Pad, but is supported by a variety of Confidential Sources; Insiders; Party-goers; Close Contacts; People In The Know involved in MUDfest 2011.


Please send tips/questions/info/cartoons/recycled cardboard/fan-mail:

What Was MUDfest?

A MUDfest design 2007
2009 MUDfest Design

MUDfest was a bi-annual Arts Festival at the University of Melbourne. It was arty, fun and a fantastic opportunity for creative people to cross-pollinate their comfort zones into a delicious mix.

In recent years there was a container turned into a Muddy Duck Pond club-come-cabaret; theatre; people living in a caravan in North Court; a wax car; theatre; hidden installations so hidden they were never found; theatre; performance art; theatre. During MUDfest the University became a veritable humming hub of creativity.

This is what MUDfest was. Has been.

You note the past tense, dear reader?

It is now an endangered species.