A series of chats with authors, performers and artists from around the world.
Share & Enjoy!
A series of chats with authors, performers and artists from around the world.
Share & Enjoy!
The Poseidon Project and The Six - Arthur Jones
Arthur Jones has been living and working in China for a fair while now, and he produces great films - not least of which are "The Poseidon Project" and "A Farewell Song", both now available on demand on Vimeo.
"The Poseidon Project" looks at a six-year search for a sunken submarine, that started as a private obsession, but went on to challenge official accounts of the escape, and bring together the lost pieces of a story that touches on the history of Britain and China in the 1930s, the 1970s and the present day.
"A Farewell Song" chronicles the lives of a group of Chinese men who have played traditional instruments for 40 years or more and are about to take a leap into the unknown. They all retired last year, which means no more state-backed concerts and no more classes at the Shanghai Music Conservatory.
Arthur's New Project, "The Six", examines the story of six Chinese survivors of the Titanic, what happened to them, and where they ended up. It's a story that has, until now, never been told, nor really even thought about.
LostPensivos Films has been producing high-quality documentaries and commercial films since 2002. Their award-winning documentaries include "A Farewell Song", "The Poseidon Project" and The Making of the Special Olympics.
It is always great to catch up with Arthur, and see where his work has taken him - or where he has taken his work! The sound quality in this interview is a bit patchy, for reasons we couldn't quite work out, but it's a great listen anyway.
You can find out more about Arthur and LostPensivos Films at:
and watch "A Farewell Song" and "The Poseidon Project" at:
Giovanni Bordone - Scabal Brand Ambassador
Founded in 1938 by Otto Hertz, Scabal was originally a cloth merchant and supplier of fabrics. His successor was JP Thissen, who was assisted by his son Gregor Thissen, the third generation of the family owned business. Through the aquisition of fabric brand Wainshiell, Scabal traces a history back to the 18th century.
Today Scabal employs almost 600 staff worldwide. Over the years Scabal has evolved into a producer of top quality fabrics to the most prestigious tailors and textile businesses around the world and as a manufacturor of the finest suits, jackets and shirts for the most demanding men
Giovanni Bordone is Scabal's Brand Ambassador, and I caught up with at Flair Bar at The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin. I thoroughly enjoyed talking to Giovanni, and finding out more about what it is that makes a bespoke suit so appealing. It was also interesting to find out that Scabal has supplied suits to some of my favourite movies, including "The Godfather"!
If you want to find out more about Scabal, head to http://www.scabal.com/
Ghost Money - Andrew Nette
Cambodia, 1996, the long-running Khmer Rouge insurgency is fragmenting, competing factions of the unstable government scrambling to gain the upper hand. Missing in the chaos is businessmen Charles Avery.
Hired to find him is Vietnamese Australian ex-cop Max Quinlan. But Avery has made dangerous enemies and Quinlan is not the only one looking. Teaming up a Cambodian journalist, Quinlan's search takes him from the freewheeling capital Phnom Penh to the battle scarred western borderlands.
As the political temperature soars, he is slowly drawn into a mystery that plunges him into the heart of Cambodia's bloody past.
Ghost Money is a crime novel, but it's also about Cambodia in the mid-nineties, a broken country, what happens to those trapped between two periods of history, the choices they make, what they do to survive.
Andrew Nette is a writer based in Melbourne, Australia. He lived in Southeast Asia for six years in the nineties, based in Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. During that time he worked as a journalist, and as a communications consultant for the United Nations and a number of non- government organisations. He has since travelled frequently in Asia and lived in Phnom Penh with his family for a year in 2008, where he worked as journalist. His short fiction has appeared in a number of print and on-line publications. Andrew is one of the founders of Crime Factory Publications, a Melbourne-based small press specialising in crime fiction, and helps edit Crime Factory, its on-line magazine. He helped edit Crime Factory Publication’s Crime Factory: Hard Labour, an anthology of short Australian crime fiction, and LEE, an anthology of fiction inspired by Lee Marvin.
It was great to get the chance to talk to Andrew, and this interview ranges over why he writes, his life as a journalist in Cambodia, through the ideas of the pulp fiction genre, and on into why crime fiction is a great platform from which to look at social change. He's a fascinating guy, and this is a great listen!
You can find out more at www.pulpcurry.com or follow him on Twitter @Pulpcurry
The book's available from http://crimewavepress.com and Amazon.
The Murder Boys - John B. Bliss
"It will stay with you for life boy. Either way you'll pay for it in your soul, but it's up to you if you want to pay for it with your time too."
1977, a scorching summer day in England. Teenage misfits Richard and Ali throw their cruel gang leader Blakes into a canal. Scared of the repercussions, they go on the run, pursued by the police as well as a dangerous ex-cop with unsound motives.
The road less traveled throws up both obstacles and solutions. As Rich and Ali discover what it means to carry the guilt of a killing around their necks, they are helped by an alcoholic cowboy, an anarchist band of travelers and a long lost father. This classic coming of age murder mystery is about growing up and staying young.
John B Bliss grew up in Oxford in the 70s and 80s. He was drawn to unusual characters and counter culture. The perverse thing about the evil of Thatcherism, he says, was that it made people rebel; there was actually loads of creativity that came out of the anger and ennui generated by the marginalisation of society. John worked in a few dead end jobs before studying media at the University of Sussex; he has worked extensively in television and scripted a number of short films and full length screenplays. Turning to prose fiction has brought some awards for his short stories and now the publication of his first novel, The Murder Boys. John lives in Brighton and is married with two children.
It was great talking to John because he is so passionate about his book, and rightly proud of it too. I really enjoyed this interview because he was willing to share not only parts of the story, but parts of his story as well, and that's a good thing!
You can find out more about John on his Facebook page, and at:
Chef Alain Devahive Tolosa of El Bulli and Catalunya, Guest Chef at Zest at The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin.
A vibrant new chapter in the spirit of the avant-garde Spanish cuisine movement, the constant intellectual search for new flavors that takes place not only in gardens and landscapes around the world but in the laboratory of a group of innovative Spanish chefs, has just begun. This time, spreading a platform of high impact and more energy than ever before, and marrying traditional flavors with special techniques is Chef Alain Devahive Tolosa, who is just finishing up his Asian tour of Ritz-Carlton Hotels, and showcasing the pinnacle of his culinary talent at the top of the world.
No stranger to his fans in Asia with his recent role in Catalunya, and creating waves on Hong Kong and Singapore’s culinary scenes, Chef Alain has fascinated gastronomic connoisseurs around the world with his unique approach to gastronomy. The Barcelona-born chef spent a decade at the world-famous three-star Michelin elBulli, arguably the best restaurant in the world, before going a step further to elBullitaller, the restaurant’s food research laboratory. His culinary style and Asian experiences will change the way we understand today’s Spanish food. This has been an eye-opener into the world of sophisticated flavors and experimental cuisine different from anything seen before.
We caught up with Alain in Tianjin, where he was spending a week as Guest Chef at Zest at The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin. I'd spent the night before sampling the delights of his food, which is just truly amazing, and this interview was almost as tasty!
Special thanks must go to Monica Mu for her help with the interview, and Ornato Antunes, Executive Chef at The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin for setting it up!
Aitor Olabegoya - Culinary Director At Migas, Beijing, and Guest Chef At Zest, At The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin.
Chef Aitor Olabegoya was the First prize winner at The International Competition for Young Chefs in Spain in 1999. He is also the most awarded Spanish Chef in Beijing. He leads the Migas kitchen team with his vast experience of having worked with many renown professionals in the industry, building a long career, despite his young age. He is constantly in search of new recipes and ways of cooking and creating fusions of different products from different cultures, and blending them with a special Mediterranean touch.
April will see Aitor at Zest at The Ritz-Carlton Tianjin as a guest of Executive Chef Ornato Antunes, where the two of them will create a culinary delight for everyone.
It was great chatting with Aitor, as he's so passionate about food - which really comes through in this interview. We ranged over ingredients, freshness and supplies, through Basque country cooking, and on to what lies ahead for him.