Late December, and the count down is on for the end of the year.
This year, we thought it would be fun to share our personal Scoop preferences.
So, here they are, our best of Sydney from five of our writers. Happy New Year! What will 2019 bring?
Australian Brandenburg Orchestra: Thomas Tallis' England (Music Live)
The Brandenburg's opening performance for the 2018 program was a spectacular evening of English music tradition from the 16th, 17th and, for something a little different, 20th centuries, entitled "Thomas Tallis' England". It was a fantastic entry point into classical music for the somewhat more apprehensive. A fabulously vibrant, rambunctious, accessible night of orchestral and choral music, with tickets from a cool $30 and arguably no such thing as a "bad" seat in the City Recital Hall.
Spike Lee's mesmerising display of one African-American police officer's attempt to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan adds a further chapter to his story of success. Addressing racial prejudice with a unique blend of comedy and drama, the film's masterful script and cinematography establish an eery similarity between the 1970s and today, leaving the audience with mixed emotions. Standout performances from Adam Driver and the up-and-coming John David Washington ensure that this is one of the top films of the year.
The Exchange Balmain (Food)
The renaissance of heritage site and local haven The Exchange Balmain is just one of the many themed stories in our scoop of music, theatre, entertainment and (here) food demonstrating a rise from the ashes of old favourites! A rustic site with casual vibes, serving woodfire pizzas, an easy bar menu while capping off the week or work day with mates at a pet friendly vibe, for me represents some of the best finds and rediscoveries this year in the food and social scene without over-the-top bells and whistles.
New Breed: Sydney Dance Company (Dance)
Perhaps this was one of the most inspired and exciting dance performances I've witnessed. Yes, big call. Held in December each year New Breed takes a look at new works from new choreographers - this year Prue Lang, Katina Olsen, Holly Doyle Janessa Dufty. Without the commercial pressures for Sydney Dance Company to fill a larger theatre in a longer season, and with the financial benefits of a sponsor, these new pieces can take risks. Really take risks. Think contemporary dance with your eyes closed as one example.