Victorious Festival Southsea

With temperatures soaring in the UK this weekend, it was the perfect weather for a festival. I joined my sister at Victorious in Southsea to assist with her radio show broadcasting live from the site on Saturday evening.Edit 1We spent the afternoon grabbing interviews with the artists lined up for the show. Working for BBC Introducing Solent, all of the artists were local, up and coming acts which the show gives platform to. Edit 3Using the portable mic and headphones, I was on hand to assist my sister with logistics and capture some photos too.

Edit 5I kept my outfit simple with an all black everything ensemble and black fedora hat to match. On reflection I should’ve worn something a little lighter given the scorching heat!

Edit 7The show was going live at 8pm, so we got ourselves back to the press tent and setup ready to go on air just as James Bay was beginning his set on the main stage.

Edit 8Steph pulled off a fantastic show with the energy of the festival buzzing in the background. I was glad to be on hand for the day and act as PA to my radio star sis!

Palace Cinema Broadway: Rocket Man Viewing

Another month and another team social with work last week. With our own private theatre viewing of the highly anticipated Rocket Man, we had a blast watching the inspiring, glitzy film whilst enjoying our drinks to celebrate another hard working month in the office.

Pic03920.jpgOn a rainy Tuesday evening in Sydney, we made our way over to Palace Cinemas in Broadway to share some pre-show drinks and nibbles. We were treated to mezze platters of cheese to accompany a comforting glass of red wine. Following a good catchup and chitchat with colleagues, we made our way into the theatre to take our seats for the film. Of course we went via the bar to line up drinks and order in snacks for the movie and there I was double parked on a Tuesday!

Pic03918.jpgDespite the cheesy outbursts of song, I thought the movie was fabulous with a raw edge which made for a more real portrayal of Elton John’s life. Having our own private theatre prompted us to act like children as we had a laugh throwing popcorn at each other, not so accepted when in a public cinema. The evening continued on at another bar in Broadway and I found myself one too many red wines down for a Tuesday night – thankfully there were others on my page and up for a few drinks too!

Current Playlist: All Night

When it seems the world is on your shoulders and life is getting on top of you, there’s no better way to kick those lows than with a refreshed and motivating music playlist. As I walk over the Sydney Harbour Bridge on my daily commute to work, I plug into my tunes to feel inspired and pumped for the day ahead. Work is high-paced and very stressful, so this time to myself in the mornings is an opportunity to clear my head and arrive to the office energised and invigorated. Most recently I have been adding to a new Spotify playlist ‘All Night’ which gets me focused on smashing tasks at work and sets me in a positive and happy state of mind. For that half an hour walk, I can escape the worries of everyday life and soak up the simple pleasure of living here in the heart of stunning Sydney Australia. Here are some of my top played tracks at the moment…


Mardis Gras 19: Grecian Glitter Girls

As one of Sydney’s biggest celebrations of the year otherwise known as ‘Gay Christmas’, Mardis Gras is always a highly anticipated event across the city. Following last year’s unforgettable introduction to the famous day with it being the year of legalised gay marriage, I couldn’t wait for another round of glitter and giggles at the girls only party.

Edit 2.jpgDecorated with all the sparkle and colour you could imagine, our lovely friend hosted the most fabulous party as her Birthday also falls on this day. I was very excited to be back in my favourite hanging cosy seat complete with sequins and a disco mirror ball – my very own throne!

Edit 6.jpgEdit 7.jpgThis time last year (as a newbie to Australia) I was also introduced to the Ozzy Birthday party staple Fairybread. I was addicted to this simple combo of white bread, butter and sprinkles, so I knew exactly where I was going to get my sugar hit ready to dance the night away again.

Edit 9.jpgAnother Mardis Gras down and I feel truly thankful for the beautiful friends that have made me so welcome and embraced my presence on such a special day for the gay community. Happy Mardis Gras ❤

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Secret Garden ‘Eleven and Out’

Dreamed up on the principle of presenting an eclectic, unpretentious line-up curated for people who love discovering new things, Secret Garden Party has been a highly anticipated festival each year it has come around. Hosted at the Downes family farm in Camden, each nook of the forest is transformed into a fantasy of fun and outrageous themes to showcase music, arts and entertainment.Edit 1.jpgBeing their eleventh and final year we couldn’t miss out! Arriving on the Friday evening having jumped on the train out of Sydney straight after work, I was more than ready for a weekend to let my hair down and soak up the free spirit party atmosphere.

Edit 2.jpgWe were lucky to get VIP tickets given that my boyfriend knows the owners, so we had easy access in and out of the festival. Our camping setup was ideal too with a trailer we had borrowed from a friend featuring a proper double bed and indoor standing area for changing – my kinda camping!Edit 11.jpgI couldn’t wait to get out the sparkle, some whacky jewellery and my outrageous headdress for the occasion. We even made friends with a lovely couple camping next door to us, so us girls got excited with our glitter and fake tattoos as we pre-drank back at camp!

Edit 9.jpgSaturday the sun came out but it wasn’t unbearably hot with some cloud cover, perfect festi weather. Some highlights included the Daft Punk tribute act, all the hidden forest dance stages and the yummy food stalls offering that naughty but necessary food you always crave at festivals. My boyfriend even designed the funky 70s inspired theme stage and bar named ‘S.G Airlines’.

Edit 7.jpgIt truly was a weekend of letting loose, embracing the crazy wonderland built by the team of volunteers and joining in the Secret Garden Party community to celebrate together one last time…S.G ’11 and Out!’

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Majestic Mood

Music is most definitely a huge part of my everyday routine and always sets me in the right mood for the day. Whether it’s powering my walk as I brave the morning commute in Sydney, or setting a chilled atmosphere whilst kicking back for a few drinks with friends, I always like to have the tunes going. I’m currently creating my own Majestic playlist inspired by Majestic Casual Radio on Spotify. My vibe is definitely deep Indie with a mix of chilled dance music, so here’s some of my current favourites as we dive into Sydney summer and get those tunes pumping down the beach!

pic00001pic00004pic00005pic00002pic00006pic00008pic00007pic00003Follow my Spotify @danianeka

Mollymook Magic

With a couple days spare before our New Years road trip up the coast, we found ourselves back in Mollymook to catch up with more friends. Having had a spontaneous Boxing Day evening out fuelled with one crate too many of VBs, we nursed our hangovers with brekky at Tallwood cafe. We both had the fruit bowl with a superfood nut seed mix and coffee to get us going for the day.

Edit 3.jpgAfter a quick dip in the ocean to reset our bodies, we visited my boyfriend’s auntie and uncle’s place where we could chill for a few hours in the cool air-conditioning. I also got to catch up on some journal writing which I hadn’t had time for over the Christmas period. It was the most idyllic setup as I sat overlooking the golf course and Mollymook beach.

edit 4edit 6That evening we were welcomed to stay the night and kindly invited to join a BBQ with yet more yummy offerings of seafood, steak and salads. I was in charge of serving the G&Ts which gave me a good head-start for our night out in the local town of Ulladulla.

edit 1edit 5 Joining our mate who is founder and producer of Mammals, we were off to see a Babe Rainbow gig at The Marlin. Another night on the VBs and some good tunes was a recipe for a fun filled evening of dancing around and having a good laugh. I thought Molly was just a quiet family seaside town, little did I know there is a buzzing young community scene in and around quaint Magical Mollymook!



A Great Gatsby Affair

When it comes to putting on a big birthday bash, my family certainly never disappoints! This year was the big 60 for my mum and in celebration we threw her a Great Gatsby themed party at the beautiful Wokefield Park Estate.

Edit 1.jpgWith lavish table decorations and a swanky whiskey bar just next door, the night oozed glitz and glamour of the 1920s. My mum was delighted with the array of dresses we had lined up for her and looked stunning in her chosen floor length, fish tail, beaded white gown complete with pearls and a head piece.

Edit 2.jpgFor my outfit I chose to channel my inner Peaky Blinder with a suit, braces, glasses and flat cap all dressed up with pretty jewels and pearls; think Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City 2 when she is best man at the gay wedding.


Edit 4.jpgEvery single guest made such an effort with their costume and we were grateful for how many friends and family came along. It was a night to remember seeing so many faces from the past and close friends who all came to put on the party of the season for my fabulous mum.

Edit 8The dance floor was popular all night and we continued into the early hours at the bar next door. We couldn’t have asked for a more fitting location to put on our Great ‘Cazby’ (my mum’s name is Caroline) evening in celebration of such a special year for my mum. It wasn’t to be missed and certainly was worth flying from the other side of the world for!

Prosecco Party; Stories Told, Memories Made

Take a group of old school friends, a few bottles of prosecco and a spread of delicious nibbles and you have yourself an evening full of giggles and fun. Coming back from the other side of the world for a few weeks, I couldn’t help but plan an evening with my favourite girls involving good food and plenty of booze!

edit-14.jpgAlways being one for a cheese board and regular customer of our local wine bar, I had to provide a platter of delicious offerings including lots of fruits, pickles, cured meats and chutneys to accompany the carefully selected array of cheese. Also known for my love of creating and consuming beautiful salads, I made a salad inspired by a recent visit to Cote Brasserie which included apple, currents, walnuts, goats cheese and a honey mustard dressing. A board of fresh french stick with oil, balsamic and basil leaves was the perfect accompaniment to complete the nibbles table.

Edit 19When originally planning the gathering, I had envisioned using my bar skills and putting together some fancy cocktails. However I was far more concerned with getting the food prepped so opted for pink sparkling and endless bottles of prosecco to quench my guest’s thirst. My mum even kindly lent us her stunning antique prosecco coupes which were the perfect prop for photos too.

Edit 21Another important component to creating the perfect setting was the music. I linked my spotify to the speakers and put on my go to chilled house music mix from Majestic Casual. Some cute fairy lights and candles made for a cosy setting around the coffee table – the girls said it looked like Christmas in there!

Edit 20I wore my new knitted jumper which I’d spotted in a little boutique in Farnham along with my favourite ruffle suede mules from Zomp Shoez in Sydney. When the girls arrived at 4pm I couldn’t wait to pop the bubbly, relax and catch up on life with my friends. It couldn’t have been a more perfect setup in which to enjoy each other’s company and soak up the time with my girls.

edit-31.jpgOf course we had planned on moving the night onto the local club in town and having started in the late afternoon, by the evening we were more than ready to let our hair down on the dance floor. This is where the night got a little more boozy as we ordered in the tequila shots and jaeger bombs! Let’s just say there were definitely some memories made and stories to be told…



Back to my roots

Sometimes it takes a little distance from something to realise how much you enjoy it. Once I began full time training and dancing became my job, I lost the passion for my skill and no longer danced with any intention or feeling. As hedonistic as it sounds, it really is essential to love your art and pursue it with true intent if you’re going to make a career of it. So having been in Sydney for a few months now, aside from a weekly ballet class, I hadn’t done a Lyrical or Contemporary class for a couple months! This is where my devotion to dancing lies as I find these styles allow me to express more freely, especially when accompanied by a good song. Recently attending a Lyrical class at Sydney Dance Company gave me a renewed sense of satisfaction and positive energy from dancing which I haven’t felt for a long time. The teacher was fantastic, starting the class with a technical warm up and stretch, followed by a beautiful routine to Sia’s remix of ‘We don’t have to take our clothes off’. Nothing beats a well choreographed routine which reflects the lyrics of the music and gives you the movements to truly reflect the mood of the song. I loved every minute of the class and it really did take me back to my roots of dancing with true joy and sentiment.