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New photos of Cleo Smith show insight into her life after kidnapping

<p>Almost three years after being abducted from a campsite, heartwarming new photos show how Cleo Smith is living as a happy school girl and big sister. </p> <p>In October 2021, Cleo Smith, who was four years old at the time, made international headlines after she was snatched from a campsite as she slept alongside her mother, stepfather and baby sister at the Blowholes campsite, about 960km north of Perth, Western Australia.</p> <p>A state-wide police operation was launched in search for Cleo, who was four years old at the time, which led to her dramatic rescue 18 days later.</p> <p>Now, almost three years after the horrific abduction and intense media scrutiny, Cleo, who is now seven years old, is adjusting to a normal life. </p> <p>A collection of photos, shared to Instagram by <em>60 Minutes</em>, showed a beaming Cleo enjoying life with her family, as one photo showed Cleo smiling along with her mother, Ellie Smith, stepdad Jake Gliddon, and little sister, Isla.</p> <p>The snapshots revealed happy moments of young Cleo's life, including a family fishing trip, Isla's first birthday, her seventh birthday and the sisters' first day at school in 2024.</p> <p>"Cleo Smith, all grown up. The seven-year-old is enjoying life in Western Australia, loving school and being a big sister to Isla," <em>60 Minutes</em> wrote.</p> <p>The photos received an overwhelming response from social media users all around the world, with many sharing well wishes for the family and for Cleo. </p> <p>"Beautiful to see the family so happy and healthy," one person wrote. </p> <p>"Bless your heart, so glad you are living your best life," another person commented. </p> <p>A third person wrote, "It's so good to see her happy! I followed her story from Argentina. Keep enjoying life Cleo!"</p> <p><em>Image credits: 60 Minutes / Instagram </em></p>

Family & Pets

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Royal family celebrates Queen Camilla's 77th birthday

<p>Queen Camilla is 77! </p> <p>Senior members of the royal family have wished her a very happy birthday, with the Prince and Princess of Wales sharing a portrait of her, taken by the Princess on Wednesday. </p> <p>The portrait was featured on the cover of a special commemorative edition of <em>Country Life</em> magazine, two years ago, which the queen helped edit for her 75th birthday. </p> <p>"Wishing Her Majesty a very Happy Birthday!" the Prince and Princess wrote on social media. </p> <p>The royal family's official X account also shared an image of her posing on the balcony of author Victor Hugo's former home in Guernsey on Tuesday, with the caption: "Wishing Her Majesty The Queen a very Happy Birthday today." </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">🎂 Wishing Her Majesty The Queen a very Happy Birthday today! <a href="https://t.co/Wv5fStZdlm">pic.twitter.com/Wv5fStZdlm</a></p> <p>— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) <a href="https://twitter.com/RoyalFamily/status/1813462770127392939?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 17, 2024</a></p></blockquote> <p>The Queen celebrated her birthday early, with private tour of Hugo's former home, the Hauteville House, where he lived for 15 years during his exile from France, which Camilla called a "remarkable treat". </p> <p>She was presented with some  vintage cheddar by Guernsey Dairy as "an early birthday present" and a group of school children from Sark sang Happy Birthday in the island's native language, Sercquiais.</p> <p>The Queen thanked the children and praised them for their singing. </p> <p>However, it was back to work for the Queen on her official birthday on Wednesday, with an appearance at the State Opening of Parliament, where she  joined the King for the traditional carriage procession to the House of Lords. </p> <p>One of the Queen's friends told the <em>Daily Mail </em>that: "It's not the tip-top way she would choose to be spending her birthday, but you won't ever hear a single word of complaint. <span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">About anything, really.</span><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">" </span></p> <p>"For someone who wasn't born into the Royal Family, she's got an extraordinarily strong sense of duty and the temperament to cope."</p> <p><em>Image: X</em></p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

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Today show star's replacement revealed

<p>Brooke Boney's replacement on the <em>Today</em> show has been announced. </p> <p>The reporter announced on-air in March that she was quitting to pursue her studies at Oxford University in the UK. </p> <p>On Tuesday, Nine’s director of morning television Steven Burling announced that current <em>Weekend Today</em> co-host, Jayne Azzopardi, will move to weekdays to cover the news round for <em>Today.</em></p> <p>“We’re thrilled to welcome Jayne Azzopardi, one of Nine’s most accomplished journalists, to Today in the news chair,” he said in a statement. </p> <p>“Jayne has covered politics in Canberra, reported on major news events, and co-hosted <em>Weekend Today.</em>"</p> <p>Celebrity interviewer Renee Bargh will also have a boosted role on the breakfast TV show, and will cover the entertainment round alongside Richard Wilkins. </p> <p>“Joining her is Renee Bargh, known for her career at Channel [V] and as a correspondent for EXTRA in LA, to cover the entertainment round alongside Dickie," Burling added. </p> <p>“We’re privileged to have Jayne and Renee join our team at Today.”</p> <p>While Boney has yet to announce her final day on-air, she previously said that she will be leaving the show after the Olympics, which is being broadcast on Nine from July 26 to August 11. </p> <p>“I’ve been offered a place at Oxford University later this year, which means I’ll be leaving the show after the Olympics,” Boney said on-air in March.</p> <p>While she didn't go into too much detail she added: “It’s been a dream of mine to be able to study at an overseas university, and it just felt like the right time to take that step."</p> <p><em>Images: Nine</em></p>

TV

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Today Show entertainment reporter's cause of death revealed

<p>Beloved <em>Today</em> show and KTLA entertainment reporter Sam Rubin's cause of death has been revealed, two months after his sudden <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/health/caring/legendary-today-show-reporter-dies-unexpectedly" target="_blank" rel="noopener">passing</a>. </p> <p>The 64-year-old died in May with a new report from medical officials finding he died from a heart attack after he suffered a massive blockage to his coronary artery. </p> <p>Just hours after hosting his Hollywood news segment in the morning of May 10th, Rubin was rushed to home after collapsing in his Los Angeles home. </p> <p>The multi-Emmy Award winner was a renowned figure in the news industry on the West Coast, and had covered entertainment, movies and TV for KTLA since 1991.</p> <p>He was also well-known in Australia as a contributor to Channel Nine's <em>Today</em> show and <em>Today Extra</em>, and in the UK where he appeared on <em>This Morning</em>.</p> <p>Following his death, Karl Stefanovic paid tribute to his colleague on Instagram, saying he "adored every second with Sam on air and off over the past two decades".</p> <p>"His spirit. His laugh. His warm caring nature. He was a beautiful man. What a loss. All love to his family, and to his TV family at KTLA5 News."</p> <p><em>Today Extra</em> host David Campbell also paid tribute to Rubin, calling him a "Hollywood great".</p> <p>"He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of the industry," Campbell posted on social media.</p> <p>"For years we would cross to him and gossip and laugh," he said.</p> <p>"He would visit us Down Under, and whenever you were in LA you had to catch up. His loss is profound. My love and condolences to his family whom he adored."</p> <p style="font-size: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; caret-color: #212529; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji';">"Also his KTLA team who have lost a brother. We will cross back to you some other time Sam."</p> <p><em>Image credits: Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p>

Caring

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From lettuce fields to opera stages – the brilliant journey of Helen Sherman

<p>How does a young girl growing up on a lettuce farm in rural New South Wales, surrounded by the quiet rustle of leaves and the hum of daily farm life, go on to become such a powerful voice on the operatic scene? This is the unlikely beginning of Helen Sherman, the Australian-British mezzo-soprano who has taken the world of opera by storm. </p> <p>Sherman’s musical journey began at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where her extraordinary voice started to attract attention. It wasn't long before her ambition led her to the prestigious Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) in the UK. There, she honed her craft, setting the stage for a remarkable career that would see her representing Australia at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition and the Francisco Viñas International Singing Competition.</p> <p>Sherman's rise to operatic fame has been nothing short of meteoric. Her versatility and talent have seen her perform a wide range of roles across the globe. Recent highlights include Flora in <em>La traviata</em> at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and Octavian in <em>Der Rosenkavalier</em> and Cherubino in <em>Le nozze di Figaro</em> with Opera North. Her portrayal of Tamiri in <em>Farnace</em> with Pinchgut Opera and Dorabella in <em>Così fan tutte</em> at Teatru Manoel in Malta further cemented her reputation as a mezzo-soprano of extraordinary range and depth.</p> <p>One of Sherman’s standout performances was her interpretation of the title role in <em>Carmen</em> with the State Opera South Australia. Her embodiment of Carmen’s fiery spirit and complex emotions captivated audiences and critics alike. Equally compelling was her portrayal of Giulio Cesare with Bury Court Opera, a role that showcased her ability to navigate the demanding vocal and dramatic challenges of baroque opera.</p> <p>In 2024, Sherman’s calendar is as busy as ever, as she will be singing Dorabella in <em>Così fan tutte</em> and Mistress of the Novices in <em>Suor Angelica</em> for Opera Australia, roles that promise to highlight her versatility and emotional depth. </p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-weight: 400; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-align: left; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; white-space: normal; background-color: #ffffff; text-decoration-thickness: initial; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">Over60 was lucky enough to be able to interview Sherman in the lead-up to her Sydney performances of <span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;"><a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/il-trittico-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Il Trittico</a> </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;">and <a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/cosi-fan-tutte-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Così fan tutte</a></span>: </p> <p><em><strong>O60: How did you become an opera singer after growing up on a lettuce farm in rural NSW? </strong></em></p> <p>“It was quite a journey. My father was an incredible piano accordionist (think Flight of the Bumblebee, Malagueña etc). In the 1970s his teaching studio in Bathurst peaked at about 40 accordion students, which I think is quite remarkable. After his father died, Dad stepped back from his teaching to take over the family farm, though he still plays to this day. </p> <p>“My mother is a music lover, and wanted her children to have the opportunity to explore creative outlets that she wasn't fortunate enough to explore in her youth, so my brother, sister and I all had lessons in piano accordion, piano, dancing, drama and singing. We were fortunate to live in a town that had many thriving arts organisations, such as the Dolly McKinnon School of Dance, Bathurst Eisteddfod Society and Mitchell Conservatorium of Music. </p> <p>“Bathurst's Carillon Theatrical Society (for which my dad's cousin, the late, great, Carole Eastment, was choreographer) afforded us the opportunity to be part of full-scale classic musical productions. I was also fortunate to attend MacKillop College, a local Catholic high school of humble proportions, that had a very passionate and resourceful music teacher, Mr David Eyles. Thanks to him, students like me were able to star in wittily re-written and orchestrated G&amp;S productions. With such a plethora of opportunities at my feet, my love of the stage was pretty much pre-determined.</p> <p>“Upon graduating high school, aged seventeen, I moved to Sydney to take up a place at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where I completed a Bachelor of Music and a post graduate diploma in opera. At this stage, I wasn't really in love with opera, that came later, when I found myself covering third novice in OA's 2007 production of Suor Angelica.</p> <p>“During the last studio run of the show, mere metres away from me, star soprano Cheryl Barker was singing the final solo notes of the title role: ‘Madonna! Madonna! Salva me! Salva me!’, tears streaming down her face, and the most incredible voice soaring out; I had chills all over my body and in my soul, and I have loved opera ever since.” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>You were based in London for years; how did you find the opera world overseas versus in Australia – in both your studies and performing? </strong></em></p> <p>“I guess the main differences are that the UK scene is a bigger one with more companies and more music schools; a more international one, that students and professionals from around the world flock to, and one with – historically – more financial backing and patronage. However, the scene in the UK has suffered dramatically in the last few years, particularly with the effects of Brexit compounded by COVID, cost-of-living crisis and embarrassingly ignorant cuts made by the Arts Council. </p> <p>“Generally, abroad, there are many more opportunities for musicians, but many, many more musicians competing for them. It is an awe-inspiring thing to meet and work with musical idols like Roger Vignols, Julius Drake, Yvonne Kenny etcetera, to sing a piece of music in the venue in which it premiered or was composed for; to tread the same cobblestones that the likes of Mozart and Handel trod and to delight in the discovery that the shoes or trousers you're wearing in a production bear the name of the likes of Dame Sarah Connolly.” </p> <p>“However, I would say that there is plenty of exciting stuff going on in Australia and an optimism and openness in the Australian people, which is impactful on our industry and its creative output. </p> <p>“More needs to be done in our country to insure all children are given creative learning outlets for the benefit of their development, their communities and for the future of our industry.” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>Why did you return to Sydney and how are you enjoying it? Any future plans to head back overseas? </strong></em></p> <p>“After a health scare in 2022 that forced me to cancel all my work, my husband received a job offer to relocate to Sydney. It felt like the universe was opening a door for us, so we gladly walked through it, and onto a flight to Sydney in mid 2023. I have felt welcomed (back!) with open arms both personally and professionally and I have no imminent plans to return abroad, at this stage.” </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>You’ve appeared in many staged productions as well as concerts. What do you like about these two types of performances? </em></strong></p> <p>“Concert performances are a chance to home in on the music and the words without worrying about physical action. Staged productions afford the performer the luxury of inhabiting and exploring a character, physically, right down to their shoes and petticoats. Both are wonderful ways of working and some works naturally lend themselves to one or the other – though, I think for opera, context is key, and can be a challenge to properly manufacture on the concert platform.” </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>Tell us about your two characters and how do you prepare for performing two roles in different operas in the same season? </em></strong></p> <p>“I've been playing the role of Mistress of Novices in Suor Angelica and am currently preparing the role of Dorabella in Così fan Tutte. One is a senior nun and the other an excitable teenage girl, so they are rather disparate. </p> <p>“The big challenge is in the early days of learning and memorising the role. Once you have a grasp of the music, the libretto and who you are, it's about showing up and reacting to your world. Preparing disparate roles concurrently can be a vocal challenge, since tessitura and vocal gesture have a big impact on how one might approach a score. I like to keep in touch, daily, with technical exercises that encourage economy and flexibility in my voice, especially when I'm working on contrasting roles. Thankfully, the human voice is a very sensitive instrument and responds intuitively to intention and emotion, so developing the character arc and subtext helps a lot with that. </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>What should audiences be watching and/or listening out for Il Trittico versus in Così fan tutte? </em></strong></p> <p>“There's so much to enjoy so let it wash over you in broad, beautiful, very human brushstrokes!! Or, if you love little details, in Il Trittico see if you can spot which singers appear in all three operas and watch out for Frugola's bag of strange objects in Il Tabarro. You'll learn a lot from the body language and small glances between characters in the world of Suor Angelica, and in Gianni Schicchi, well, I am told there is a very interesting door stop!</p> <p>“In Così fan Tutte, listen out for the way Mozart creates subtext for his characters; tiny details, like Dorabella needing to sing a third higher than Fiordiligi (because she is the competitive younger sister!) when emotionally fraught in some of their act one recitatives! Mozart is a genius of musical detail!” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>Do you have any dream roles you’re yet to perform? </strong></em></p> <p>“There are too many to list, but I adore the role of Octavian in der Rosenkavalier by Strauss (a role I have sung, but would love to revisit) and I would love to sing Ariodante by Händel.”</p> <p>---</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px; background-color: #ffffff;"><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px;">Click here for more information on </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;"><a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/il-trittico-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Il Trittico</a> </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;">and <a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/cosi-fan-tutte-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Così fan tutte</a>. </span></p>

Music

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Walking can prevent low back pain, a new study shows

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tash-pocovi-1293184">Tash Pocovi</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/christine-lin-346821">Christine Lin</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mark-hancock-1463059">Mark Hancock</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/petra-graham-892602">Petra Graham</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/simon-french-713564">Simon French</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a></em></p> <p>Do you suffer from low back pain that recurs regularly? If you do, you’re not alone. Roughly <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31208917/">70% of people</a> who recover from an episode of low back pain will experience a new episode in the following year.</p> <p>The recurrent nature of low back pain is a major contributor to the <a href="https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanrhe/article/PIIS2665-9913(23)00098-X/fulltext">enormous burden</a> low back pain places on individuals and the health-care system.</p> <p>In our new study, published today in <a href="https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(24)00755-4/fulltext">The Lancet</a>, we found that a program combining walking and education can effectively reduce the recurrence of low back pain.</p> <h2>The WalkBack trial</h2> <p>We randomly assigned 701 adults who had recently recovered from an episode of low back pain to receive an individualised walking program and education (intervention), or to a no treatment group (control).</p> <p>Participants in the intervention group were guided by physiotherapists across six sessions, over a six-month period. In the first, third and fifth sessions, the physiotherapist helped each participant to develop a personalised and progressive walking program that was realistic and tailored to their specific needs and preferences.</p> <p>The remaining sessions were short check-ins (typically less than 15 minutes) to monitor progress and troubleshoot any potential barriers to engagement with the walking program. Due to the COVID pandemic, most participants received the entire intervention via telehealth, using video consultations and phone calls.</p> <p>The program was designed to be manageable, with a target of five walks per week of roughly 30 minutes daily by the end of the six-month program. Participants were also encouraged to continue walking independently after the program.</p> <p>Importantly, the walking program was combined with education provided by the physiotherapists during the six sessions. This education aimed to give people a better understanding of pain, reduce fear associated with exercise and movement, and give people the confidence to self-manage any minor recurrences if they occurred.</p> <p>People in the control group received no preventative treatment or education. This reflects what <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2468781222001308?via%3Dihub">typically occurs</a> after people recover from an episode of low back pain and are discharged from care.</p> <h2>What the results showed</h2> <p>We monitored the participants monthly from the time they were enrolled in the study, for up to three years, to collect information about any new recurrences of low back pain they may have experienced. We also asked participants to report on any costs related to their back pain, including time off work and the use of health-care services.</p> <p>The intervention reduced the risk of a recurrence of low back pain that limited daily activity by 28%, while the recurrence of low back pain leading participants to seek care from a health professional decreased by 43%.</p> <p>Participants who received the intervention had a longer average period before they had a recurrence, with a median of 208 days pain-free, compared to 112 days in the control group.</p> <p>Overall, we also found this intervention to be cost-effective. The biggest savings came from less work absenteeism and less health service use (such as physiotherapy and massage) among the intervention group.</p> <p>This trial, like all studies, had some limitations to consider. Although we tried to recruit a wide sample, we found that most participants were female, aged between 43 and 66, and were generally well educated. This may limit the extent to which we can generalise our findings.</p> <p>Also, in this trial, we used physiotherapists who were up-skilled in health coaching. So we don’t know whether the intervention would achieve the same impact if it were to be delivered by other clinicians.</p> <h2>Walking has multiple benefits</h2> <p>We’ve all heard the saying that “prevention is better than a cure” – and it’s true. But this approach has been largely neglected when it comes to low back pain. Almost all <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140673618304896?via%3Dihub">previous studies</a> have focused on treating episodes of pain, not preventing future back pain.</p> <p>A limited number of <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26752509/">small studies</a> have shown that exercise and education can help prevent low back pain. However, most of these studies focused on exercises that are not accessible to everyone due to factors such as high cost, complexity, and the need for supervision from health-care or fitness professionals.</p> <p>On the other hand, walking is a free, accessible way to exercise, including for people in rural and remote areas with limited access to health care.</p> <p>Walking also delivers many other <a href="https://www.vichealth.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/VH_Benefits-of-Walking-Summary2020.pdf">health benefits</a>, including better heart health, improved mood and sleep quality, and reduced risk of several chronic diseases.</p> <p>While walking is not everyone’s favourite form of exercise, the intervention was well-received by most people in our study. Participants <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/37271689/">reported</a> that the additional general health benefits contributed to their ongoing motivation to continue the walking program independently.</p> <h2>Why is walking helpful for low back pain?</h2> <p>We don’t know exactly why walking is effective for preventing back pain, but <a href="https://www.e-jer.org/journal/view.php?number=2013600295">possible reasons</a> could include the combination of gentle movements, loading and strengthening of the spinal structures and muscles. It also could be related to relaxation and stress relief, and the release of “feel-good” endorphins, which <a href="https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/body/23040-endorphins">block pain signals</a> between your body and brain – essentially turning down the dial on pain.</p> <p>It’s possible that other accessible and low-cost forms of exercise, such as swimming, may also be effective in preventing back pain, but surprisingly, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34783263/">no studies</a> have investigated this.</p> <p>Preventing low back pain is not easy. But these findings give us hope that we are getting closer to a solution, one step at a time.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/231682/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tash-pocovi-1293184">Tash Pocovi</a>, Postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Health Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/christine-lin-346821">Christine Lin</a>, Professor, Institute for Musculoskeletal Health, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mark-hancock-1463059">Mark Hancock</a>, Professor of Physiotherapy, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/petra-graham-892602">Petra Graham</a>, Associate Professor, School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/simon-french-713564">Simon French</a>, Professor of Musculoskeletal Disorders, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/walking-can-prevent-low-back-pain-a-new-study-shows-231682">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

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I watched some 40 films at this year’s Sydney Film Festival. Here are my top five picks – and one hilarious flop

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ari-mattes-97857">Ari Mattes</a>, <em><a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-notre-dame-australia-852">University of Notre Dame Australia</a></em></p> <p>This year’s <a href="https://www.sff.org.au/">Sydney Film Festival’s</a> rich offerings of films more than compensated for the minor technical issues that led to some screenings being interrupted.</p> <p>Out of the 40-odd films I saw, here are my top five, along with some notable mentions and three disappointments (including a genuine <em>dud</em>).</p> <h2>1. The Girl with the Needle</h2> <p>Cowritten and directed by Swedish filmmaker Magnus von Horn, <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Girl_with_the_Needle">The Girl with the Needle</a> is loosely based on the story of notorious early-20th century serial killer Dagmar Overbye.</p> <p>But this is no procedural true crime film, painstakingly attempting to recreate crimes with historical accuracy. It’s a stylish Danish nightmare dazzling with cinematic acrobatics right from the opening sequence, in which black and white faces hideously morph, looking at the viewer like deranged figures from a hellish circus. It is, indeed, one of the most terrifying films I’ve seen.</p> <p>The narrative follows the struggles of new mother Karoline (Vic Carmen Sonne) as she gives her baby to Dagmar’s informal adoption agency and begins working with her as a wet nurse, unaware of what’s really going on.</p> <p>Sonne is as self-assured as ever – and none of the actors put a foot wrong here. Seasoned Danish film star Trine Dyrholm is exceptional in bringing nuance to what could have become a caricaturishly evil role as Dagmar. And Besir Zeciri endows Peter, a war-wounded veteran who can only find employment in a circus freakshow, with an unexpected warmth and tenderness.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VlyW-z1xbO4?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>The Girl with the Needle features some of the most distressing sequences one could find in a commercial film. Its meticulously rendered shades of German expressionism never distract from its smorgasbord of horrors, offering an almost unbearably bleak vision of the world in the aftermath of the Great War. If only all films were this good!</p> <h2>2. Dying</h2> <p>I’d normally suppress a yawn if you told me I had to sit through a three-hour social realist drama about the everyday difficulties of a bourgeois German conductor and his family. Yet writer-director Matthias Glasner’s <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dying_(2024_film)">Dying</a> is a near perfect film (no surprise it won <a href="https://www.screendaily.com/news/matthias-glasners-dying-wins-german-lola-for-best-film/5193046.article">four prizes</a> at the German Film Awards).</p> <p>The film is complex and engrossing – deeply sad in places and hysterical in others – formally controlled, but underpinned by an anarchic sensibility. It is life-affirming without any skerrick of sentimentality.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/kagVqEfPxFw?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>Lars Eidinger is astonishingly good as maestro Tom, who is trying to keep his career on track as his family life crumbles around him. He is matched by Lilith Stangenberg, mesmerising as his unhinged sister Ellen. Robert Gwisdek is equally exceptional as the highly strung composer and friend Bernard, while Corinna Harfouch anchors the film’s first section as Tom’s far from maternal mother, Lissy.</p> <p>At one point, Ingmar Bergman’s 1982 period film <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fanny_and_Alexander">Fanny and Alexander</a> is playing on the TV (Tom watches it every Christmas). Even though Dying feels like a contemporary film committed to interrogating the difficulties of being in the modern world, there’s something of late Bergman here as it unfolds across its epic length.</p> <p>It is a three-hour film about middle-class life, but like a great 19th-century novel, it never feels long. The fact that nothing particularly extraordinary happens is testament to how well-made the film is.</p> <h2>3. Kill</h2> <p>Director Nikhil Nagesh Bhat’s Indian action film <a href="https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/kill_2023_2">Kill</a> is cheesy, sentimental and at first seems remarkably silly.</p> <p>Commando Amrit, played by beefy TV star Lakshya, is travelling to New Delhi by train with his buddy, fellow commando Viresh (Abhishek Chauhan). His true love Tulika (Tanya Maniktala) is also on board and has recently become engaged to another man through an arrangement by her wealthy father, Baldev Singh Thakur (Harsh Chhaya), who happens to own the train company. When a group of 30-plus bandits led by the charming but ice-cold Fani (Raghav Juyal) move to rob the train, Amrit must defend Tulika, her family and the rest of the passengers.</p> <p>When the title card appears 40 minutes into the film, suddenly emblazoned on the screen, it seems like a distracting quirk at first. But it begins to make sense as the train rolls on. All of the violence and bone-crushing action of the first section is mere preamble, leading to a point of transition from an extremely violent but fun action film, to a much darker – and bloodier – revenge film.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/da7lKeeS67c?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>Kill is an exceptionally well-wrought genre film. The kinetic and balletic action recalls the golden era of Hong Kong action cinema, but with hammers, daggers and sickles instead of guns and the frenetic staging of hand-to-hand combat instead of poetic slow-motion footage. It is also a great example of a film being more than the sum of its parts. No element is perfect, yet they come together to transcend these limitations, its flow reaching sublime levels by the end.</p> <p>There’s also an undercurrent of sadness throughout. We see an India of haves and have-nots, of families of bandits struggling to survive and of the supreme violence sustaining the social and political order. As Fani says to Amrit near the end: “Who kills like this? I killed four of your people. You finished off 40 of my family. You’re not a protector. You’re a monster. A fucking monster.” The title says it all.</p> <h2>4. Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story</h2> <p>Biographical films about celebrities inevitably feel gossipy. Ian Bonhôte and Peter Ettedgui’s <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super/Man:_The_Christopher_Reeve_Story">Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story</a> is no exception. But it is so well made (and well-resourced, one would imagine, as it’s produced by DC) that it moves beyond its tabloid-like qualities.</p> <p>Interviews with Reeve’s friends and colleagues, including Susan Sarandon, Glenn Close and Jeff Daniels, are interspersed with home footage shot by Reeve and his family throughout his career and during his recovery from the near-fatal riding accident that left him paralysed and breathing through a respirator for the rest of his life.</p> <p>Reeve’s close friendship with “brother” Robin Williams assumes central importance, with the film implying the two men were so emotionally dependent on each other that Williams would probably still be alive if Reeve hadn’t died in 2004.</p> <p>But the most interesting parts of the film involve carefully assembled archival footage looking at how Reeve’s decision to play Superman negatively impacted his career and personal life. He never starred in another profitable film, and his father and colleagues such as William Hurt loathed his decision to play a comic book character.</p> <p>This is counterpointed with his post-accident career as a director and disability advocate. Interviews with Reeve’s children add a genuinely tragic sense of pathos to this slick, well-made and emotionally exhausting “true Hollywood” story. It’s everything one could want from such a documentary.</p> <h2>5. Kneecap</h2> <p>Cowriter-director Rich Peppiatt’s Kneecap is a riotous, irreverent biopic following the career of Belfast drug-dealers Móglaí Bap and Mo Chara as they team up with high school music teacher DJ Próvai to become the first Irish-language rap group, Kneecap.</p> <p>The real <a href="https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-66408560">Kneecappers</a> cowrote the film and play themselves and, given none of them are actors, do so remarkably well. They’re joined by Irish heavyweights Josie Walker, playing the detective who has it in for them, and Michael Fassbender, playing Móglaí’s father, an old-school Irish radical who has been on the run for the past few decades.</p> <p>The film depicts their hedonistic drug use and anarchic disregard for the law in the context of their radical political motivation to speak Irish against the colonial English. And while it may be a bit cartoonish in its presentation of Belfast’s history and the struggle to keep Gaelic alive, it is a music biopic after all.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/FFYfp-hKxZQ?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>Kneecap is violent, coarse and laced with infectiously good humour – a genuinely fun film, buoyed by its charismatic stars and lively style. Only the most stringent moralist wouldn’t enjoy this one!</p> <h2>Notable mentions</h2> <p>It’s extremely difficult to pick a top five when 15 or so of the films I saw were standouts. And this is testament to the quality of the festival’s selection.</p> <p>It was a pleasure watching heavyweight Sean Penn go head-to-head with Dakota Johnson in writer-director Christy Hall’s <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daddio_(film)">Daddio</a>, even if the story takes an uninteresting turn in the final third. Despite the banality of the premise – a New York cabbie chats with a passenger – and the inanity of some of the dialogue, this romantic ode to urban life in all its alienated, fluoro-lit techno glory is so well crafted that we happily go along for the ride.</p> <p>Equally affective is the melancholic and beautifully performed <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puan_(film)">Puan</a>, a restrained comedy set in a University faculty in Buenos Aires. Puan could easily make my top five, as could André Téchiné’s <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_New_Friends_(film)">My New Friends</a>), an offbeat French melodrama starring Isabelle Huppert as a disillusioned police officer who becomes friends with an anti-cop activist in the suburbs.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/cnz-6h60tkk?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <h2>Poor performers</h2> <p>Of the lot, I only found three films disappointing.</p> <p>The first, Among the Wolves, is a Belgian-French documentary in which a photographer and illustrator lie waiting in a tiny, makeshift building to encounter wild wolves. While some of the footage is striking, the film is let down by its scientific inaccuracy, such as references to the “alpha male” wolf – a term and concept that has <a href="https://www.newyorker.com/science/elements/the-myth-of-the-alpha-wolf">long been discredited</a>. Such innacuracy is a cardinal sin for a documentary, which is supposed to inform the viewer.</p> <p>Though critically acclaimed, Hollywood horror film The Substance – a story of an ageing entertainer who turns to a mysterious substance to stay young (with unsurprisingly horrific ramifications) – feels neither new nor particularly interesting. And while it’s great to see Demi Moore and Dennis Quaid back on the big screen, their caricaturish characters make the whole thing seem like a boring joke: an inflated short film that is both irritatingly silly and painfully didactic.</p> <p>But rarely does a film so resolutely reaffirm a sense of the absurd hubris of humans as Francis Ford Coppola’s self-financed mega-flop, Megalopolis. This cartoonish, incoherent mess set in a dystopian version of the United States, “New Rome”, is howlingly bad in places.</p> <p>Imagine the worst parts of The Hunger Games and <a href="https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0064940/">Fellini Satyricon</a> (1969) crossed with Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead and you begin to get a sense of the kind of self-indulgent, heavy-handed nonsense that is Megalopolis.</p> <p>Side-splittingly funny moments come courtesy of bad dialogue (“Utopias become dystopias,” actor Giancarlo Esposito says at one point with a straight face). And stilted acting by Adam Driver and Aubrey Plaza had the (remaining) audience in stitches. Megalopolis is like one of the great fiascos from days gone by – the 21st century’s Heaven’s Gate – and there is definitely something delightful about the existence of this <a href="https://variety.com/2022/film/news/francis-ford-coppola-funding-120-million-dollars-megalopolis-1235184765/">US$120 million</a> (roughly A$180 million) flop.</p> <figure><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/1FQzWD5xVKQ?wmode=transparent&amp;start=0" width="440" height="260" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></figure> <p>But as a dud, Megalopolis is the outlier. And in a year following Barbie, Oppenheimer, Napoleon and Poor Things (talk about heavy-handed cinema), much of the menu of this year’s Sydney Film Festival once again proves there are still good filmmakers out there making good films.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232706/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/ari-mattes-97857"><em>Ari Mattes</em></a><em>, Lecturer in Communications and Media, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-notre-dame-australia-852">University of Notre Dame Australia</a></em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/i-watched-some-40-films-at-this-years-sydney-film-festival-here-are-my-top-five-picks-and-one-hilarious-flop-232706">original article</a>.</em></p> <p><em>Image: IMDB</em></p> </div>

Movies

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"We love you, Papa": Sweet father's day tribute to Prince William

<p>Kate Middleton shared a sweet new photo she took of her husband, Prince William, and their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis for Father's Day. </p> <p>The Princess of Wales shared the tribute not long after <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/princess-kate-makes-first-public-appearance-since-cancer-diagnosis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">returning to her royal duties</a> at Trooping the Colour on Saturday. </p> <p>The photograph was captioned: "We love you, Papa. Happy Father's Day. G, C & L." </p> <p>In the image, William has his arms around his children as they all stand on a beach facing the sea. </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C8Rb1TRtNnh/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C8Rb1TRtNnh/?utm_source=ig_embed&utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by The Prince and Princess of Wales (@princeandprincessofwales)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Royal fans took to the comments to wish Prince William a happy Father's Day. </p> <p>"This is a lovely photo of a lovely family. Happy Fathers Day, Prince William," wrote one fan. </p> <p>"Really lovely photo, Happy Fathers day William," added another. </p> <p>"What a beautiful photo of William and the children and a sweet message! Happy Father’s Day William," wrote a third. </p> <p>‪"Aww what a beautiful picture taken by our talented Princess of Wales!! And the message from the kids is adorable. You are such a wonderful, loving dad and you just deserve the best!" added a fourth/</p> <p>A few hours before the Father's Day tribute for William was posted, the Prince of Wales shared his own throwback photo with King Charles. </p> <p>"Happy Father's Day, Pa. W," he captioned the photo of them playing football when he was a boy. </p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p> <p> </p>

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Worrying pattern of cancellations shows Australian TV's grim future

<p>As the future of free-to-air Australian television continues to be more and more "uncertain", a worrying pattern of dozens of cancelled programs show how the industry has been in trouble for quite some time. </p> <p>In recent years, dozens of seemingly popular shows have been axed across three major networks with thousands of people across the industry preparing themselves for further cancellations, pay cuts, job losses and career changes.</p> <p>According to <a href="https://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/exclusive-34-axed-aussie-shows-revealed-as-future-of-free-to-air-tv-uncertain-224725084.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Yahoo Lifestyle</em></a>, 34 shows across Seven, Nine and Ten have either been axed, put on an indefinite hiatus, or quietly removed from TV schedules with no mention of it again over the last five years. </p> <p>Many Aussie TV staples such as <em>Millionaire Hot Seat</em>, <em>The Bachelor</em>, and <em>Australian Ninja Warrior</em>, which were all once the highest rated shows on television, have been binned due to declining viewership and dwindling ratings. </p> <p>Channel Ten's <em>The Masked Singer</em> has also become a casualty in the TV wars, as host Dave Hughes <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/entertainment/tv/hughesy-spills-the-beans-on-major-shows-set-to-be-axed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">shared</a> that he simply hadn't received a production schedule for the new season of the show, only to discover it had been shelved. </p> <p>In an attempt to breathe new life into the channels, newer shows like Shaynna Blaze’s <em>Country Home Rescue</em> or Kate Langbroek’s <em>My Mum, Your Dad</em> premiered, but have only survived for single seasons after failing to grab an audience. </p> <p>Even revived classics like <em>Big Brother</em>, <em>Celebrity Apprentice</em> and <em><a href="https://oversixty.com.au/entertainment/tv/channel-10-axes-another-show-amid-ratings-crisis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Gladiators</a></em> haven’t been able to survive as they now face growing competition from streaming giants like Netflix and Stan.</p> <p>As the list of cancelled shows continues to grow, one seasoned lighting director, who asked to remain anonymous, told Yahoo Lifestyle that job insecurity for casts and crews is a major concern. </p> <p>They said, “Every year the breaks between jobs are getting longer and longer to the point a lot of us (crew) are now leaving the industry. Ten years ago we’d be booked consistently with jobs locked in 12 months in advance for all of the networks, now everyone’s scrambling to try to get on a three-day pilot shoot. Everything is so uncertain.”</p> <p>Below are all of the free-to-air shows from the last five years that haven’t been renewed.</p> <p id="channel-seven"><strong>Channel Seven</strong></p> <p>Big Brother (2001-2008, 2012-2014, 2020-2023)</p> <p>SAS Australia (2020-2023)</p> <p>This Is Your Life (1975-1980, 1995-2005, 2008, 2011, 2022-2023)</p> <p>Blow Up (2023)</p> <p>Million Dollar Island (2023)</p> <p>We Interrupt This Broadcast (2023)</p> <p>The Voice: Generations (2022)</p> <p>Big Brother VIP (2021)</p> <p>Holey Moley (2021)</p> <p>Ultimate Tag (2021)</p> <p>Wife Swap Australia (2012, 2021)</p> <p>House Rules (2013-2020)</p> <p>Plate of Origin (2020)</p> <p>Pooch Perfect (2020)</p> <p id="channel-nine"><strong>Channel Nine</strong></p> <p>Millionaire Hot Seat (2009–2023)</p> <p>My Mum, Your Dad (2022-2023)</p> <p>The Beach House Escape (2023)</p> <p>Rush (2023)</p> <p>Snackmasters (2021-2022)</p> <p>Australian Ninja Warrior (2017-2022)</p> <p>Beauty and the Geek (2009-2014, 2021-2022)</p> <p>Celebrity Apprentice (2011-2015, 2021-2022)</p> <p>Country Homes Rescue (2022)</p> <p>This Time Next Year (2017-2019)</p> <p>Australia’s Most Identical</p> <p id="channel-ten"><strong>Channel Ten</strong></p> <p>Gladiators (1995-1996, 2008, 2024)</p> <p>The Bachelor (2013-2023)</p> <p>Studio 10 (2013-2023)</p> <p>The Masked Singer (2019-2023)</p> <p>The Traitors (2022-2023)</p> <p>Would I Lie To You? Australia (2022-2023)</p> <p>The Real Love Boat (2022)</p> <p>The Bachelorette (2015-2021)</p> <p>Bachelor In Paradise (2018-2020)</p> <p><em>Image credits: Ten / Seven </em></p>

TV

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Tiny reason for huge commitment: Grandad to run from Perth to Sydney

<p>John Harb admits he’s never been much of a runner. But that’s about to change, when the 62-year-old grandad and yoga enthusiast runs from Perth to Sydney for his granddaughter Luna.</p> <p>Little Luna came into the world three months early at Sydney's Royal Hospital for Women, in February, and at just 500 grams, she was the same weight as a tub of butter. </p> <p>The experience left John in awe, not only of his baby granddaughter, but of the magic that happens in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the hospital.</p> <p>“To watch Luna over the past three months, and witness her strength and her fighting spirit has been incredible,” said John. </p> <p>“Seeing my daughter Michelle and her husband Nick, and all the other parents and premature babies in the ward going through such a difficult time but being so well supported by the doctors and nurses made me want to do something to help,” he said.</p> <p>“When I discovered 80 percent of the equipment in the unit, including the equipment that kept Luna alive, was purchased through donations, I wanted to do something big.”</p> <p>Taking inspiration from Nedd Brockman, John has decided to run across the country with the goal of raising one-million-dollars to support the NICU.</p> <p>Currently training by running 15 kilometres a day, John has sourced advice from a range of experts including Brockman himself, who made a special visit to the NICU after hearing of John’s plans.</p> <p>He plans to commence his run at Cottesloe Beach on 1 October and arrive at The Royal Hospital for Women, Randwick in early December.</p> <p>Royal Hospital for Women Foundation General Manager Elise Jennings said John’s commitment will allow the hospital to purchase more lifesaving equipment on their wish list, like a new ultrasound machine for high risk pregnancies. </p> <p>“I have come to know John through the time he spent in the NICU supporting Michelle and Luna and I know how passionate he is about making a difference for those who come after Luna and we are incredibly grateful to John for his commitment. Running from Perth to Sydney is a huge undertaking, especially for a grandfather in his 60s with no previous long distance running experience, but if anyone can do it, he can.”</p> <p> “We are thrilled that John is announcing his run as part of our major annual fundraiser, Heart for Her, in recognition not only of the extraordinary care received by Michelle and Luna, but for all of the babies and families who come through our doors.”</p> <p>“For three decades now, The Royal Hospital for Women Foundation has funded the best medical equipment, innovative research, people and programs but we rely on the generosity of our donors to do this.” </p> <p>Donations can be made <a title="https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb" href="https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb" data-outlook-id="eed61181-8705-430d-a478-3f5f14e8b008">https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb</a></p> <p><em>Image credits: Supplied</em></p>

Family & Pets

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"No fan of mine": Kyle Sandilands shocked on air by brutal John Blackman audio

<p>Kyle Sandilands was paying tribute to his “childhood hero” <em>Hey Hey it's Saturday </em>star John Blackman on-air Thursday morning, when he was interrupted by an audio of the late star trashing him in a recent interview. </p> <p>Speaking on the Kyle and Jackie O Show, the shock jock said he was upset when he learned of <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/australia-is-a-sadder-place-shock-as-john-blackman-s-death-confirmed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Blackman's passing</a>, but before he was able to elaborate on how the radio star was his childhood hero, his manager Bruno Bouchet interjected and told him about Blackman's brutal review. </p> <p>In a May interview on the <em>You Cannot Be Serious</em> podcast, Blackman said: “Why are we giving these two publicity hungry, oxygen thieves, waste of oxygen. The man [Sandilands] is a no talent. He doesn’t have a voice for radio, by the way.”</p> <p>Footage of Sandilands listening to the audio for the first time was shared by <em>KIIS FM</em> on their Instagram stories, and both he and Henderson were shocked. </p> <p>“I’m very confused,” Sandilands said, before coming to the conclusion that  Blackman wasn’t a fan of him because he’s not as polished as “old school” media veterans.</p> <p>“What’s happened here is old school media, TV, radio, newspapers. They’re all fake,” he said.</p> <p>“They pretend everything’s wonderful. You never really know the real person." </p> <p>He then elaborated and said that he and Henderson try to keep it real with their listeners. </p> <p>“We don’t pretend it’s a wonderful day. Even though it’s p*ssing with rain and snowing or whatever. We don’t pretend. We say, ‘Oh, what a s**t day.’ We’re just a different breed.</p> <p>“Oh well, that’s one hero of mine that’s dead. No fan of mine.”</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Music

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Search for trapped Sydney woman ends in tragedy

<p>The search for a woman in her 30s caught in the middle of an explosion in Western Sydney has ended in tragedy. </p> <p>Jasmin Mhey was the only person unaccounted for after a townhouse in Western Sydney was destroyed in an explosion on Saturday afternoon, caused by a suspected gas leak. </p> <p>Now, more than 30 hours after the blast, search and rescue teams on Monday confirmed they had located the body of a woman, who has yet to be formally identified. </p> <p>The frantic search for Ms Mhey began on Saturday after the explosion, but was hampered by wet weather.</p> <p>On Monday morning, police confirmed in a statement that the body of a woman had been found.</p> <p>“Following an extensive search operation over the weekend, the body of a woman was found about 3.20am on Monday at the scene," the statement said. </p> <p>“The woman is yet to be formally identified. A report will be prepared for the information of the coroner.” </p> <p>Neighbours on Sunday told of how the missing woman’s mother reacted when she found out her daughter was caught up in the blast.</p> <p>“She broke out crying a couple of times,” neighbour Evelyn said.</p> <p>“But then she kept saying, ‘my daughter’s strong, my daughter’s strong, my daughter’s strong’.”</p> <p>Emergency services are yet to establish what caused the blast, which will be subject to a NSW Police investigation, although police were initially called to the area to reports of a gas explosion.</p> <p><em>Image credits: 7News</em></p>

Caring

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"Family unity is key": Sarah Ferguson gives cancer update

<p>Sarah Ferguson has shared an update on her cancer journey during her appearance at the Cannes Film Festival. </p> <p>The Duchess of York was diagnosed with <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/fergie-reveals-second-cancer-diagnosis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">skin cancer</a> in January, not long after getting a mastectomy for her breast cancer, which she was diagnosed with in June 2023. </p> <p>When asked about her health, the royal told <em>People</em>: "This evening I am doing very well. I think that we've managed to get cancer in the right place rather than cancer ruling me. I've put cancer in the corner." </p> <p>Speaking on the amfAR Gala red carpet, the 64-year-old added that it was important to be aware and get checked for both breast cancer and melanoma. </p> <p>“I think you always have to be aware. I think it’s great to get checked for breast cancer [and] melanoma. I think you just have to be very candid about it," she told the publication. </p> <p>“I think a lot of people get very frightened to talk about these things. I’m very happy with my mastectomy and my breasts and just to talk about it.”</p> <p>Her diagnosis coincided with both her brother-in-law King Charles, and Princess Catherine's cancer diagnoses, although both of them have not disclosed what types of cancer they have. </p> <p>She praised the royal family for their "unity" during these difficult times and how she has been able to offer support to Charles and Catherine. </p> <p>"I think family unity is key… I think the key to life is that we all support each other," she said. </p> <p>"And also forgiveness is a great thing. I think forgiveness of yourself, and forgiveness of others." </p> <p>Earlier this month, the duchess' eldest daughter Princess Beatrice spoke about her mother's health in her debut TV interview on <em>This Morning</em>. </p> <p>"She’s such a phenomenal icon. As a mum she’s been amazing," she said, adding that despite going through so much in the last year, she felt inspired by her mum's resilience and sense of purpose. </p> <p>“She’s doing really well. She had a bumpy health scare last year but she’s all clear now. But I think at 64, she’s thriving. She’s been through so much, but now she’s coming into her own.</p> <p>“We are just reminded when any parent or individual has a health scenario, you really need to get the checks you need as early as you possibly can.”</p> <p><em>Image: DGP/imageSPACE/ Shutterstock editorial</em></p> <p> </p>

Caring

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Today show star and veteran doctor dies at age 69

<p>A veteran doctor and regular guest on the <em>Today</em> show Dr Ric Gordon has passed away at the age of 69 from pancreatic cancer. </p> <p>Known for sharing his expertise as an obstetrician and fertility specialist, Dr Gordon became a household name after he delivered the first baby on Australian television. </p> <p>Upon hearing of his death, veteran radio host and beloved Australian author Wendy Harmer revealed Dr Gordon delivered both her babies even after she and her partner dropped out of IVF.</p> <p>In a post on X, she wrote, “He was a pioneer in IVF in Australia and gave hope to so many... and was kind and caring professional. Vale.”</p> <p>Nine News confirmed the “sad news” of Dr Gordon’s passing from pancreatic cancer on Saturday, as presenter Georgie Gardner said “he will be deeply missed”.</p> <p>Professionally known as Dr Ric Porter, he had previously hosted Nine’s long-running lifestyle hit <em>Good Medicine</em>, which ran for nine years in the 1990s. </p> <p>Dr Gordon was a part of the team of doctors who delivered the first IVF birth in NSW in 1983, and during his career, he delivered more than 5000 babies, including in 2003 when he safely delivered a baby live on the <em>Today</em> show.</p> <p>Reflecting on the moment in 2022, Dr Gordon told <em>Today</em> viewers it was an extraordinary moment in television.</p> <p>“It went so well, it was a great morning and a good outcome,” he said. “The baby cried when it was meant to cry, mum and dad were happy."</p> <p>The well-known doctor also drew some controversy over his career, including an offensive analogy where he used the Holocaust to explain weight loss on the same breakfast TV program in 2015. </p> <p>Despite apologising for saying “there were no overweight people in the concentration camps”, his apology was dismissed by many for being “insufficient” and “unsatisfactory”.</p> <p>Dr Gordon said at the time, “I’m very sorry it upset those people. It was never my intention.”</p> <p>He added that he had “done a lot of study” on the Holocaust and his comments were merely “used as a medical example”.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Today </em></p>

Caring

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Channel 10 axes another show amid ratings crisis

<p>Channel 10 has decided to axe yet another popular show as they continue to grapple with declining ratings and viewers leaving. </p> <p>Following the cancellation of <em>The Bachelors </em>and <em>The Masked Singer</em>, <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-13449749/Channel-10-axes-amid-ratings-crisis-revealed-Channel-Seven-considering-saving-unlikely-series.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Daily Mail Australia</em></a> reported that the network was also cancelling <em>Gladiators</em>. </p> <p>Despite the show's success in the UK, the Australian reboot struggled to find the same effect as they failed to sustain their initial viewership. </p> <p>The show produced by Warner Bros and hosted by Beau Ryan and Liz Ellis was launched with high hopes and attracted 395,000 metro viewers during its premiere. </p> <p>However, by the second episode the numbers plummeted to just 196,000 - over half of the initial viewership. </p> <p>Critics on social media were also quick to point out the lack of crowd presence, despite the show being filmed under normal conditions, with one person saying: "It felt like watching an event without any real energy."</p> <p>The Traitors is another the show that was axed by the network after just two seasons, and now an insider has revealed that Channel Seven is considering commissioning the series.</p> <p>"The show's concept has potential, but it needs a fresh approach and a new platform," the insider told <em>Daily Mail Australia</em>. </p> <p>They also shared what's in store for Channel 10 as they attempt to revive their ratings. </p> <p>"Channel 10 is now deciding to put all their eggs in one basket, planning to roll out not one, but two seasons of Australian Survivor in 2025," the insider said. </p> <p>"They are putting together a 10th season special as well as an Australia vs USA Survivor all-star showdown which will be screened simultaneously in America and Down Under."</p> <p>A Channel 10 executive said: "Survivor has consistently performed well for us, and we believe this new approach will reignite audience interest."</p> <p>The <em>Daily Mail</em> reported that they have contacted Channel Seven and 10 for a comment. </p> <p><em>Image: Ten</em></p>

TV

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Royal artist reveals King Charles' reaction to official portrait

<p>Jonathan Yeo, who is known for his portraits of royal family members, has revealed the King and Queen's reaction to the most recent <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/entertainment/art/king-charles-unveils-first-post-coronation-portrait" target="_blank" rel="noopener">portrait of King Charles</a> which made headlines. </p> <p>The portrait, which was done in four sittings from 2020, featured the King in his crimson Welsh Guards uniform, with a butterfly hovering above his shoulder. </p> <p>"People don't know their own faces, so it's much more useful to see the reaction of someone who knows that person well because they know in a split second if you've captured them," he told <em>The Times</em>. </p> <p>"Sometimes they'll say it, but more often you see it in their face – amazement, pleasure or recognition."</p> <p>He recalled how during his and Charles' final sitting in November, Camilla told him: "Yes, you've got him," with a look of recognition across her face. </p> <p>Yeo also revealed that the King saw the portrait when it was half completed and despite the surprise at the intense colour, he smiled at the painting and said: "It is remarkable how it has turned out." </p> <p>The artist said that the King and Queen were prepared for the mixed reactions from the public. </p> <p>"They knew what to expect," he told the publication, before revealing that the King appeared in good health despite his recent cancer diagnosis. </p> <p>"[Our last sitting] was before his diagnosis. He didn't look remotely ill to me, and he looked amazingly well on Tuesday."</p> <p>"We already had a bit of a rapport and that definitely makes it easier," Yeo said of the painting process. </p> <p>"He was really relaxed and I think it helped that he is interested in the process. We spent a lot of time talking about art and artists, as well as the environment."</p> <p><em>Image: Aaron Chown-PA/POOL supplied by Splash News/ Shutterstock Editorial</em></p> <p> </p>

Art

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Royal photographers weigh in on photo editing fiasco

<p>Royal photographers, brothers Zak and Samir Hussein have opened up about the realities of altering royal images - including what is and isn't allowed. </p> <p>"It's pretty clear what we're allowed to do – we're allowed to basically use darkroom techniques," Samir - who has also taken official portraits of members of the royal family - told <em>9Honey</em>. </p> <p>He then explained what darkroom techniques entail: "So what photographers in the days when they were shooting film used to do in the dark rooms.</p> <p>"We're pretty limited in what we can do, it's sort of a basic crop, maybe a bit of colour correcting and that's how we edit our photos basically.</p> <p>"Sometimes you look at picture and you think 'Oh, if I crop it like this, it will stand out more, this will be more impactful'. So it's usually, if I'm honest, when looking back at the picture that's taken, that's the first thing I look at – how can this be cropped to make it have the impact that it should really."</p> <p>Zak, who has taken many photos of Prince Harry and Meghan as well as other royal family members agreed and said that the photographers do their best to get the shot right to reduce the need for editing. </p> <p>"You try and get it right first time around when you're taking the picture," he told 9Honey. </p> <p>"Ideally, you don't want to have to do too much to the picture but yeah, it's very basic what we do.</p> <p>"I think cropping is really important because you're trying to find the best version of that picture, so if it means cropping in tighter to make it a nice portrait or keeping it wider to show more in what's going on in the event.</p> <p>"It's pretty basic what we do to the picture because it's all about when you take the picture, you're looking through the viewfinder [and] that's when you want to get it right."</p> <p>The topic of re-touching royal photos sensationally <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/family-pets/princess-kate-sensationally-speaks-out-over-photo-fiasco" target="_blank" rel="noopener">made headlines</a> over a manipulated image posted by Kate Middleton, and has now made its way back into the spotlight following the launch of the <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/entertainment/art/incredible-treasure-trove-of-unseen-royal-images" target="_blank" rel="noopener">new exhibition</a> at The King's Gallery exhibition in the Buckingham Palace.</p> <p>The exhibition which runs until October 6 has noted darkroom techniques including  cropping and framing out backgrounds or brightening up levels in a few of the negatives, including one label that read: "retouching is an essential part of photography.</p> <p>"Analogue retouching can occur at three stages: Modifying the negative, Manipulating the image during printing, direct retouching on the final print."</p> <p><em>Image: 9Honey/ </em><em>Royal Collection Trust / © His Majesty King Charles III 2024.</em></p> <p> </p>

Art

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Incredible treasure trove of unseen royal images

<p>In a mesmerising blend of history and artistry, Buckingham Palace's newly christened King's Gallery has unveiled a captivating journey through time and royalty with the debut of "Royal Portraits: A Century of Photography".</p> <p>Opening its on May 17, this groundbreaking exhibition delves into the illustrious lineage of the Royal Family through more than 150 carefully curated portraits – some never before seen by the public eye.</p> <p>A highlight among these treasures is a poignant snapshot capturing a rare familial moment: Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Margaret, Princess Alexandra, and The Duchess of Kent cradling their newborns. Lord Snowdon, Princess Margaret's husband, immortalised this touching scene as a token of gratitude to Sir John Peel, the esteemed royal obstetrician responsible for delivering all four babies within a mere two-month span.</p> <p>In this heartfelt image, Queen Elizabeth II tenderly holds Prince Edward, her youngest offspring, while Princess Margaret, Princess Alexandra and The Duchess of Kent embrace their own bundles of joy. Accompanying this snapshot is a handwritten letter penned by Princess Margaret to her sister, affectionately addressed as "Darling Lilibet", requesting a signature on a print destined as a cherished memento for the esteemed doctor.</p> <p>The exhibition transcends mere family portraits, delving deep into the evolution of royal portraiture over the past century. Visitors are treated to a visual feast of iconic images captured by renowned photographers, including Dorothy Wilding, Annie Leibovitz, David Bailey and Rankin. Notably, the legendary Cecil Beaton's immortalisation of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation remains a cornerstone of the collection, offering a timeless glimpse into history.</p> <p>The exhibition also pays homage to the enduring allure of Princess Anne through her striking appearances on <em>Vogue</em> covers and a celebrated coming-of-age portrait by Norman Parkinson, commemorating her 21st birthday. From the timeless elegance of Princess Anne to the radiant charm of Prince William and Kate Middleton, and the spirited grace of Zara Tindall, the exhibition showcases a diverse tapestry of royal personalities spanning generations.</p> <p>Yet, it is not merely the portraits themselves that captivate visitors, but the untold stories and intimate moments woven into each frame. Delving into the depths of royal history, the exhibition reveals unseen wartime images by Cecil Beaton, illustrating King George VI and Queen Elizabeth's unwavering resolve amidst the chaos of conflict.</p> <p>As visitors explore the gallery, they are guided by a free multimedia experience narrated by Dame Joanna Lumley, offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the artistry and craftsmanship behind these timeless portraits. From Hugo Burnand's vivid recollections of photographing the royal coronation to the candid insights of royal photographers such as Rankin and John Swannell, the multimedia guide adds depth and dimension to the exhibition, inviting visitors to immerse themselves fully in the rich tapestry of royal history.</p> <p>"Royal Portraits: A Century of Photography" is not merely an exhibition; it is a testament to the enduring legacy of the British monarchy, captured through the lens of some of the most esteemed photographers of our time. From the grandeur of coronations to the tender embrace of a mother cradling her newborn, each portrait tells a story – a story of tradition, resilience and the timeless allure of royalty.</p> <p><em>Images: Royal Collection Trust / © His Majesty King Charles III 2024.</em></p>

Art

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King Charles unveils first post-coronation portrait

<p>King Charles has unveiled his first post-coronation portrait in a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace. </p> <p>The painting by Jonathan Yeo - known for portraits of celebrities including Nicole Kidman, Paris Hilton and Grayson Perry - was commissioned in 2020 to celebrate the then Prince of Wales’ 50 years as a member of charitable institution The Drapers’ Company. </p> <p>Yeo had four sittings with the King, with the first sitting when Charles was still Prince of Wales in June 2021 at his country home in Highgrove, and the last sitting in November 2023 at Clarence house. </p> <p>The portrait  – approximately 2.6 metres by 2 metres framed – depicts King Charles wearing the uniform of the Welsh Guard. </p> <p>“It was a privilege and pleasure to have been commissioned by The Drapers’ Company to paint this portrait of His Majesty The King, the first to be unveiled since his Coronation,” the artist said.</p> <p>“When I started this project, His Majesty The King was still His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, and much like the butterfly I’ve painted hovering over his shoulder, this portrait has evolved as the subject’s role in our public life has transformed.</p> <p>“I do my best to capture the life experiences etched into any individual sitter’s face.</p> <p>“In this case, my aim was also to make reference to the traditions of Royal portraiture but in a way that reflects a 21st century monarchy and, above all else, to communicate the subject’s deep humanity,” said Mr Yeo.</p> <p>“I’m unimaginably grateful for the opportunity to capture such an extraordinary and unique person, especially at the historic moment of becoming King.”</p> <p>The King and Queen met The Master of The Drapers’ Company, Tom Harris and Past Master, William Charnley on Tuesday at Buckingham Palace. </p> <p>The portrait will go on public display for a month at the Philip Mould Gallery in London, from May 16 until June 14 and will be displayed at Drapers’ Hall from the end of August.</p> <p><em>Images: news.com.au</em></p> <p> </p>

Art

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Sad reason why Sydney dad went overboard

<p>A father-of-three who <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/travel/cruising/sad-end-in-search-for-overboard-cruise-passenger" target="_blank" rel="noopener">fell overboard</a> a P&O cruise ship last week has been identified, and his brother claimed that he had racked up a $4,000 casino debt onboard after being lured to spend big by the company's incentives. </p> <p>Shane Dixon, 50, died after falling overboard the cruise ship two hours before was due to dock in Sydney Harbour at 6am on Monday, May 6. </p> <p>Shane was reportedly on the three-day Elvis-themed cruise to Queensland's Moreton Island with his mother Sue Dixon, 66, who had saved up for the trip. </p> <p>"Our mother is devastated. Broken," Shane's brother Scott Dixon told <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-13410955/Dad-three-plunges-death-luxury-cruise-liner-running-eye-watering-debt-ships-casino-tables-insider-reveals-high-rollers-lured-gamble-Australias-shores.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Daily Mail Australia</em></a>. </p> <p>“She has already buried one son and now she has to bury another one,” he said. </p> <p>Scott said that his brother was going through a rough time, as he struggled financially due to a series of tragedies including the breakdown of his marriage, and the deaths of their brother and father. </p> <p>Shane had spent $5000 at the cruise’s casino on the Friday, and Scott claimed that his brother received free drinks,  a $750 play voucher and a ticket for a future cruise. </p> <p>In Australia, strict laws govern how gaming providers can advertise gambling, with promotions like the above, which may encourage someone to spend more than they intend banned. </p> <p>However, cruise ships that operate casinos in international waters can bypass these laws, reported the <em>Daily Mail.</em> </p> <p>After borrowing money from his family to repay the debt, Shane ended up spending another $4000 the following night, according to Scott. </p> <p>"His brain was probably going 100 miles an hour. He probably thought, ‘s***, I’ve done it again. I can’t afford it and I can’t ask mum for more money," Scott said. </p> <p>He added that P&O staff have been amazing and compassionate towards his mother. </p> <p>A P&O Australia spokesperson said they won’t be commenting on the claims due to the coroner’s investigation that is underway.</p> <p><em>Images: ABC News/ news.com.au</em></p> <p> </p>

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