Photography: Sofia-Sekia Atrutkepic

Sofia-Seika Atrutkepic is a student studying photography here at Murdoch University. She loves travel, photography and has a Pug named Potato. I decided to find out more…


Hey Sofia, I love the Image you shot for the cover. How did you go about shooting it?

“I shot in the sound studio with my friend Imogen for a class. The assignment was on light gels and we shot Imogen’s sister Astrid.”


“I love people, I love expression, and I like capturing what I find is beautiful about someone, the special thing that makes them who they are.”

Can you tell us more about these photos from India? When did you go?

“I went last year (2016) in the uni holidays. I used this trip to work on my photography, and experience a different culture that was vastly different from Australia.”

Is there a particular reason why you chose India?

“Not particularly, as a student it was a destination that was suitable for my budget (laughs). But before my travels there I had seen some pictures that made it seem like such a magical place.”


How did you travel around India?

“I backpacked mostly. I started at the bottom of India (In Goa) and travelled around by bus, taxi, Tuk-Tuks and Rickshaws.”

You seem to love to shoot portraits, why is this?

“I love people, I love expression, and I like capturing what I find is beautiful about someone and what makes them who they are.”

And lastly, how is your pug Potato?

“Potato is great and loving his little doggy life. His best friends Jaffa and Jedha go for a walk together every day down in the field. He hasn’t been in any photoshoots lately but he makes a great assistant!”

Do you have any websites you want to share?

“My Facebook (Seika Photography) and you can follow my intragram @sofiaseika for more of my photography :).”




Meet Murdoch Athletics Captain: TJ Callas

TJ Callas is your Captain. At just 20, he is pursuing a double major in Cyber Forensics and Information Security as well as minoring in Screen Production. TJ is working full time as an intern (Graduate Reporting Engineer) with Empired LTD, a casual retail team member with Super Cheap Auto, training six days a week as WA Athlete (State and National Representatives) and is the Sports and Athletics Captain of Murdoch University. Hailing from Guinea, West Africa 9 years ago TJ has come a long way. As a youth, he was faced with many traumas relating to language barriers, racism, and his own mental health. He says, he owes his success all to his sports and athletics. Today TJ is working hard on his own Athletics Program dedicated to helping youths overcome their trauma. I decided to find out more.

Hey TJ, give me a run down on your involvement in athletics.

So basically I’m a 100m and 60m sprinter as well as a long jumper. My best for the 100m is 10.54, 6.86 seconds for the 60m and 7.20m for the long jump. I train 6 days a week. I am also a Level two Athletics Australia coach with WA Little Athletics as one their coaches for Little Athletics Programs for Schools (LAPS) teaching and demonstrating the fundamental skills of athletics at all levels of athletics discipline which includes running, jumping and through as well as train the Murdoch Vikings Athletics team.

How well did Murdoch Vikings do in the Uni games last year?

We did really well. Last year Murdoch was represented in nearly all event disciplines. Every athlete made it to the final, placing us in the top four or five). 9 out of 13 Athletes made it to either the final or semi-final of his/her competition events. Overall we won 3 medals (two gold and one silver) and we broke a 32 year old record.

What is the main goal for your athletics?

I am hoping to qualify and compete at the Commonwealth or Olympic Games as a 100 meter sprinter. I don’t believe in excuses I believe in results, however with work, uni and training full time it’s very hectic, but I take every opportunity that comes. This is why I tell myself that “I will persist until I succeed”. It does not matter how or when I get there, all on my mind is to make it to one of the games one day by God’s help.

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When did you start using sport to overcome your trauma?

When I first came to Australia I didn’t speak English well, so I used sport to help me learn the language, meet new people and becoming more confident in myself. At that time I didn’t know what depression and anxiety were. I used to get bullied, and when I went through puberty I started to feel insecure about myself at times. When I was in year 8 I encountered racism, as I was the only black kid in the whole school during that time. So to overcome this I started to hang around people who did sports and I associated myself with them. I found when I was doing sport I just focused on what was in front of me instead of worrying about people or other things in my life.

You have a dream project that you’re in the process of creating.  What’s it all about?

Sports Assisting Youths (SAY) is a project I am developing alongside NFP to help youths of this generation grow stronger so they may face their everyday fears and overcome trauma, with the help of athletics. The aim is to have a facility that includes an indoor gym, swimming pool, basketball court and an oval. The facility would be available on a 24/7 basis to anyone who might at any moment be experiencing traumas in their life and cannot see a way out.

What is your goal for this project?

I want to ease the amount of suicide rates among youths. Today too many youths harm themselves due to depression, anxiety and lack of confidence. Reflecting on myself, I once suffered from depression but with the use of sport, it has helped me overcome the many failures, breakdowns, and traumas in my daily life.

How can people help your project or follow your journey?

You can find me on Social Media here:

Facebook Page: facebook.com/athleticsmylife/     

Instagram: @tjcallas

SnapChat: t.callas  

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Interview & Photography by Harry Cunningham

Interview with Perth Comedian: Patrick Marlborough

Patrick Marlborough is a Perth based comedian and freelance writer, namely for Vice and Junkee. Last February Patrick dropped his first comedy ‘mixtape’ “Barley Bombings – Goofs By Patrick Marlborough”. Barley bombings is a collection of Marlborough’s live performances recorded over the past 2 years. His recent debut is fearlessly funny. Barley Bombings provides an unarticulated and unfiltered discourse on topics surrounding suburban Perth, Mental health and the crazy world of Australian politics, policies and Pinga culture. Barley Bombings will make you hate JB-HiFi even more and make you realize that you actually miss Osama Bin Laden. Patrick and I hung out at JB Hi-Fi, I asked him some questions and we checked out what the ‘best of Australian comedy’ section had to offer. We didn’t buy anything.

 Hi Patrick, It seems you have a love hate relationship with being Australian.

Yeah, definitely. It’s a tricky one. I always have since I was a little kid. Australian jingoism – there’s something extremely off-putting about it – essentially we’re a country founded on the destruction of the world’s oldest most intricate culture. And all that we have to show for it is like, the ARIA Awards, Li’l Elvis and the Truckstoppers, and the collected eye-rolls of David Marr (laughs).

Have you really been arrested 5 times in Bali on drug charges?

No, I’m a good boy. I don’t do the drugs – well, only prescription meds and coffee.
I’ve actually never been to Bali, too many Perth folk there. Second only to Melbourne.

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Do you think Australian pop-culture will ever mature into something more than Pingas, Bunnings sausage sizzles and Bali tats?

I actually think we have an amazing culture. But I know what you mean. You have to remember that our cultural cringe has been driven by government policy and a collage of ingrained bigotries. You have a generation of Australian’s who were raised by the Howard curriculum and don’t know any better. We’ve been told to hold the arts in disdain because that means we hold critical thinking in disdain. Our scope has been limited, it’s hard for any young artists anywhere to get their voices heard – our cultural gatekeepers are Sydney good ol’ boys jerking it to Vivaldi and dropping anecdotes about feuding with an unaware Bob Ellis. It’s tragic, but a change is gonna come. You’d hope. How is Philip Adams’ health, anyway?

Can you have national pride in Australia and not be a racist?

I’m yet to see it. I mean, my parents are very patriotic but they’re incredibly left wing. It does often come at the cost of ignoring our past, however. Look at our national discourse. Just look at the past two weeks, with the Elijah Doughty decision, and the government denying the rights of the LGBT community for marriage equality. This turd wrangle of a plebiscite, cooked up by callous intellectual nomads who wouldn’t know a loving embrace from spraying Lynx Africa on their balls. I’m only very patriotic when I’m overseas (laughs). I do take pride in the fact that we have a good minimum wage, but again, I’m raised by unionists (laughs).

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Do you think Australia needs to rebrand itself to show it’s more than its pop-culture stereotypes?

The ‘Crocodile Dundee’ stereotypes (if you travel) can be condescending – but Australians also revel in that. The world perceives us as these laid back, cool, funny guys but in reality…we’re  essentially a nation of fuckbois. Australia is like the guy your ex-girlfriend starts dating who is seemingly just a cool scene-kid, but actually has a deeply problematic history of abuse.

Hilariously, the larrikin myth stems from two satirists – Lawson and Patterson – taking the piss out of the very people who would later adopt it as our defining trait, their persona. It’s our great, fundamental, national irony.

And how we relate to the USA? America is the 80s sports movie douchebag doing coke and threatening to tear down the community center, we are their gimpy side kick named ‘Percy’ or ‘Tum-Tum’ or some such.

I guess I want to put the ‘nah’ in Australiana.

Your various personas on stage are hilarious. Where did you learn this skill?

I’m on the autism spectrum, and I’m hypomanic and hyper-associative – so mimicry is how I learned to communicate with people. As a kid, I was obsessed with imitating every cartoon character, Buggs Bunny is my biggest influence as a comic. My favorite impression to do as a kid was John Howard. I used to put an orange swim cap on and fake glasses and ape his blubbery drawl.

I have vivid memories of being sent to the naughty bench the day after 9/11 for performing a bit that was essentially Kermit reporting the news as it happened, and The Count doing the body tally. Weird kid, for sure.

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What do you find off-putting about today’s mainstream Australian comedy?

I find mainstream Australian comedy offputting because it’s the same gaggle of ‘faildads’ in their mid-40s that have been in the spotlight for what feels like my entire life. Our comedy, particularly our standup, bends towards the tame, the status quo. It’s incredibly middle class and reactionary, there’s a reason we have little to no history of serious political stand-up in the Bruce or Pryor mold. It’s depressing, but we’ve always been like that as a nation. Australians love to punch down: we love cruelty, we love slurs, we love alienating those without a voice. We hate it when that is turned back on us. This is why Chris Lilley is showered in Logies when he should probably be showered in shit and day old mayonnaise from the Bayswater DOME. This is why people like John Clarke, Rob Stitch, Gina Riley, Jane Turner, and more recent voices like Briggs and the Kates are important. But there’s few like them in Australian stand-up, it caters to the festival crowd, which weirdly, is its own kind of conservative. We make progress with content sometimes, but almost never with form.

In 2017, if your comedy isn’t punching up, advocating for something, or making this country face up to its barbarism, then get off the pot, we don’t need more of your middling shit.

Thanks, Patrick. When and where can I catch your next show?

I have a couple of shows at Fremantle Comedy Factory in September (Sail and Anchor), and will hopefully be doing some gigs over East this October. There also might be another surprise audio thingy dropping soon.

Check out Patrick’s comedy page NERT here and catch him on Twitter here.

Interview and photography by Harry Cunningham

Library construction renews student spaces

By Sarah Smit

The 24/7 Learning Common on level 2 of  the Geoffrey Bolton library, long known as the bane of any student unwise enough to have a laptop with a non-infinite battery life, has been completely refurbished.

The Learning Common now boasts working powerpoints near almost every desk, USB charging points on most tables, and a collection of noise dampening couches. The Murdoch Guild of Students has partnered with the Library Mangement to provide new vending machines and free mobile phone charging stations.

The Library’s new blue square chairs are noise dampening, allowing collaboration which doesn’t disturb those nearby

Construction on the 24/7 learning common is just one part of the major changes taking place.  The after hours entrance on level 2 will soon be accessible 24 hours, meaning that students coming from the ECL building can bypass Bush Court on their way to the library.

Moving forward, library management intends to decorate the space with student art and is looking into providing whiteboards for general use.

Matthew Evans, the new Director of Library and Knowledge Management Services says that the current major construction is projected to be finished by the end of March, but that they intend to continually renew the space yearly to keep up with student’s needs and feedback.

METIOR is hiring!

Do you like words, arranged in sentences and paragraphs? Are you wildly opinionated and unreasonably idealistic? Of course you are, you’re a uni student. METIOR is looking for contributors, so if you’d like the opportunity to share your thoughts with more than just your 18 twitter followers, maybe we can help each other out.

As an editor for METIOR your role will be to seek and review contributor submissions, to work with contributors to help them get their work ready for print/screen, to build relationships and liaise with clubs and faculty groups to promote METIOR as a place for students to have their voice heard.

  • Political editors: We are looking for two politically charged people from either end of the spectrum to bring a balance of political opinion to the pages of METIOR. Passionate debates welcome, just no knife fight tie breakers.


  • Comedy editor: Do you see the humour in everything around you? Are you never without a witty retort? Does your commentary/satire have a razor’s edge to it? Or do you just love making people laugh so hard they give that awesome little snort? Consider putting your talents and energy into being METIOR’s new Comedy editor.


  • Creative editor: Is art, words, puzzles, videogames, and interpretive dance more your deal? METIOR would love to have you as their new creative editor to help feature the work of Murdoch’s up and coming creative talents.


  • Contributors: Have a story to tell? An opinion to passionately argue for? But don’t want to have to commit to being an editor? METIOR is always accepting submissions for print or pixel (The website. I was trying to be cute). Have your words immortalized in your campus magazine. Seriously, our archives go all the way back to the very first volume printed in 1974. Your words will live on well past your graduation. There are no prerequisites for writing for METIOR; all you need is passion, be it for campus news or short fiction or poetry or comedy or film reviews. You can write as many or as few articles as you like, but we need content and we need you! If you have an interest or soapbox or a high horse, we want to know about it. And if English is not your first language, but you still have a story you want to share, don’t be put off! We are happy to work with you to help you get your story told.

Positions need to be filled in time for work to begin on issue 2 in week 6. Applicants for editor positions will have an advantage in selection if they have been involved in issue 1, so email us and get involved now!

For more information about writing for METIOR, see here.

To apply, send us a cover letter, a copy of your resume, and a 300 word article on the topic you’d like to edit. Applications should be directed to metior@murdochguildstudents.com.au.


Life-hacks at Murdoch

By Adelaide Cromwell-Keenan

So you’ve enrolled at university, only to realise you have no idea what you’re doing? Join the club, buddy; here are some ways to decrease your culture shock.

  1. Realise that everyone has been just as lost when they first started. If you’re someone who doesn’t feel comfortable asking for directions, check out the map on the Murdoch website.
  2. The Student Centre is your best friend. If you have any questions about your units, courses, visa, or anything of the kind just drop into their building.
  3. If you miss a lecture make sure to catch up online. We’re leaving self-sabotage behind in 2017.
  4. Look to the Guild if you’re someone who might need to take advantage of the second hand bookstore and food bank.
  5. Murdoch offers a range of health services, including a free counselling service.
  6. Don’t underestimate the servo across the street. It may give you food poisoning, but the bargains are worth it.
  7. Take your student ID card everywhere. So many food places offer student discount if you flash your card.
  8. If you’re someone who may need your disability needs met, visit the Murdoch Equity and Social Inclusion office for enquiries.
  9. Talk to your classmates, they’ll know where to get free parking and the best websites to pirate your textbooks from. Plus, it’s less concerning when you drink at the Tav with friends.
  10. The bookstore is the perfect place to go at a last minute panic when realising you’ve left all your exam essentials at home. We’ve all been there.

‘Speaking of….’ A Chat with Nicholas Tan

By Sarah Smit

Nicholas Tan is an award-winning writer and recently premiered his new play, Five, Six at Studio 411 for the Fringe Festival. METIOR caught up with him to discuss his directoral debut and indie theatre in Perth.

This is your first time directing, right?

That’s correct. I did some assistant directing 3 years ago for fringe 2015, but this is my first time at the helm, yeah.

Has it been a challenging transition for you?

It’s interesting, because on the one hand I have  a vision — being the writer, I know where I want the actors to go — but the difficult part is trying to find the language to direct. And because the play deals with OCD and some other issues, it’s sometimes hard to teach the actors to be authentic about it so we’ve had to do a few changes. Some of the bits will be stylised, so that’s one difficulty. The other difficulty is I’m also producing, as well, so it’s kind of having to put on two hats. It’s pretty full on.

Can you tell me a bit about the play?

Essentially, it’s about two brothers, and one of the is closeted and the other one has OCD and they come from a broken family, and what happens is they try to cope with their struggles.

Has the experience been quite stressful?

Yeah. Some of the things that were originally in the play are no longer there, or now we’ve just implied it, so there were  a few character changes. Also it was originally a ten minute play, and now it’s gone to an hour.  The ten-minute version was directed by someone else and [in the shorter version] some of the behaviours are ok, but when they’re expanded to an hour long play, some of those characteristics are a bit difficult to prolong because we’re trying to express it in  a way which is respectful, too. What I found is that when the OCD continued throughout the play, there was something wrong with the structure of it. We have a younger cast; in the ten minute version they were all 25 and older, [now] the youngest is 19, we have two 20 year olds, and the oldest is 28.

Was there a generational barrier there?

Yeah, some issues of the display of mental health. The play is set around ten, fifteen years ago, so and it still plays in my mind, but I kind of have to externalise the pain [for the actors] because things have changed since then. I think we have a better awareness now of mental health issues, and we’re slowly changing our positivity to saying ‘I’m not alright, I need help,’ whereas in the play, some of the characters have facades, and that doesn’t make sense to the actors. It makes sense to me though, and I have to try and explain that. And just the experience as well, some of the younger actors may not have experienced OCD or mental health issues. I have to try and give them that research to help them. The play isn’t  an exposition on mental health, but there’s lots of implied issues in there, so they needed to understand it. I think that’s the challenge.  The play also deals with closeted behaviour,  and what I get from these actors, [is] it’s not an issue that their friends have experienced, so showing up and having to teach them how to conduct themselves, and the history behind it, I think, is a very important part of the process for them as actors to discover the script. Then again, saying that, the benefit of a cast that we have now is that they’re closer to the age of the characters than the original cast were. But it does meant that there’s a lot of research and pre-acting exercises.

OCD and mental health struggles are quite internal experiences; do you find it difficult to communicate your experiences of those things to the actors?

Yeah,  it’s hard for me to show because my expertise in the theatre is not acting itself, so I have to rely on different tools and resources to be able to teach them. One of the things we did I couldn’t do it myself without making a fool of myself, or going into my OCD phase. I couldn’t personally show it to them, so one of the suggestions I gave to Callum, who plays Joel, was to look it up on Youtube. But even then it’s difficult to try mimic it.  And I guess that’s why I try to stylise those things, not too much to the point where it becomes mimicry or disrespectful, but enough that we avoid the situation of having to fake it. It’s not really putting it in good words, but yeah… but it’s important to try to be respectful of it.

To find a genuine portrayal of it?

Yeah, a genuine portrayal , otherwise you just lose it. It’s even things as basic as anger that can be difficult to actually show the actors. Part of it is them not understanding, and me not explaining it to them what the rationale is. Once I explained it, they got it. So the challenge is me thinking when do I need to explain it and when don’t I need to explain it.  There’s such a limited time sometimes in my mode, I go do this and do this and do this, and I forget that because I’m the writer, it’s already in my head. But they didn’t write the script, so I need to develop it with them.  So that’s the difficulty of having two hats.

What’s your background? How did you get here?

My interest is actually in writing. In 2016, there was a festival in Newcastle NSW, and they were asking for ten minute pieces. The theme was out of place, and I wrote this piece and it was selected as one of 10 plays. I went to Newcastle and saw the play, and I thought that the story and characters were not finished yet, so I decided to write [the expanded version of] it myself.
Before that, I had something I wanted to produce at Fringe, but I wasn’t able to find a director. So with this ten minute version, when I wanted to do it for Fringe, I thought ‘Why don’t I have a go at directing it myself?’ But of course it was going to be a sixty minute piece, and on top of that, I’m also producing and doing other tasks as well, so it’s a little difficult. If I could get a director, that would have been great! I love the idea of someone else interpreting [your work] for you, because I think when you interpret it yourself – especially at my early levels of directing- mistakes can happen, and you want an experienced person. But the nature of Fringe and where I am at the moment, meant that I would have to direct it myself, and so I decided to, and I produced it myself. I had to train myself pretty quickly about what was expected in directing, and how you deal with actors. The producing side was not as difficult in the sense that I didn’t need to look up or read up or anything, but more the time you needed to sign documents and send emails. But the directing, definitely, I had to make sure of the theory and make sure I was proficient.

Is the play autobiographical , or is it more an exploration of the issues that you went through?

There are definitely some true experiences in there, of myself and people that I know, but I’ve also added fiction to it. I did give the script to a few people to read, and some of my friends could see bits that they thought were them, but they still couldn’t figure out the whole thing. So I think I’ve done a good job; I’m not going to get sued for slander or libel! The characters in the play are from a broken family, and that was pretty much the experience, growing up in Kalgoorlie; I’ve seen it firsthand. So some people will see some truth in it, but there are other parts that are totally comic and probably wouldn’t happen in real life. *laughs* Hopefully not!

What do you want to achieve with Five Six? Ideally, what would the audience take away from it?

I think I don’t want the audience to think that the characters are right. Because characters are not always right. The way I’ve written it, sometimes the characters make the wrong decision and take the consequences. And do not think the play reflects my views. You’ll see, when you watch the play, that some things are left unanswered. And that’s how I think that some things should be. But the theme I think definitely is taking responsibility for your choices, and being responsible for your success and your happiness. But also, considering your journey. In the play, all the characters go through the same problems, but they each take a different way out. And that’s what I want the audience to get.

But it’s not there to teach any morals; I don’t believe in that. And I try not to judge my characters. I think when we go to see a play, sometimes we’re too quick to go ‘this character is good and this character is bad,’ but we’ve got to look at the flaws. I think the what the audience member should say is, I wouldn’t have done this if I were the character, or I understand what the character is going through but I would have done it a different way.

Did you grow up with a brother?

I do have a younger brother, and that’s sort of where the issues come up. The issues didn’t come up with how I grew up, the issues came up from people that I saw. So it was taking experiences of lots of people and putting them together. I didn’t grow up in a broken family, but many of the people I went to school with did. I’m a bit suggestive when It comes to characters, I believe it’s up to the audience to come up with the story for the characters, so I try not to say this particular character grew up in a broken family.  It’s not said in the staging or dialogue, but I try to suggest it. Audience members have the right to their imagination. I think sometimes in indie theatre there is sometimes a lot of amplification and flamboyance, and everything’s in your face. I wanted to minimise that. I want the audience to be able to think, to imagine and be creative. They’re part of the play as well. Something I told the actor is that the final part of the production is the audience; it’s up to them what the play is about in the end. We can only do so much.

You mentioned that there’s a lot of amplification in indie theatre, could you expand on that?

Yeah, I find in Perth indie theatre, there is a lot of amplification, there is a lot of flamboyance, there is a lot of out there, in your face. In this play there are some parts that are in your face, but not in your face in an artificial way, I think. What I mean is that if it’s in your face, it’s by movement, and by voice and by dialogue, but not by special effects. I try not to rely on special effect too much. That might change, it’s just where I am at the moment. I would never say ‘this is how I will be forever,’ but at this moment, my artistic practise is to try and keep it actor focused. If you rely on special effects too much to  try and entertain the audience in a play that deals with issues, you end up talking about the issues and not the people who are affected by the issues. That’s how I see it anyway. There are lots of plays that deal with identity politics that are very out there and push the form, and that’s good, its always good to push the form. But then the question I ask is where are the people? Because it’s people who are affected by the issues, not the issues themselves. So it’s important to make sure there’s a balance and ecology in the theatre world, and that’s what I’m trying to do. But also for me, it’s also interesting to see how much can I push the actors and the script in a way which doesn’t have to rely on props. Some people are lighting designers, or set designers, but I’m not. If I were to use the props, they’re not my strengths.

Are there any directors in Perth who are doing those things that you find really interesting?

There’s this company called Improve Silence – one of my actor friends is one of the producers of this company- and they recently made a show so that is character based, and I finds that interesting to watch. There was another show by The Last Great Hunt; it wasn’t so recent, they already did a second part. [It starred] Jeffrey Jay Fowler and Chris Isaacs, and they’re just storytelling on stage. And that was a really interesting performance, because it was really stripped bare. But saying that, The Last Great Hunt do produce other shows with effects. [They did] one that involved puppetry and there was no dialogue, but the characterisation was interesting.   I couldn’t do anything like that. Even if you have your style, still I think it’s important to see what’s around.

I suppose you can know your own style and still be informed by other performers and other ways of doing things.

You need that variation. But I think, for me, you can’t look at a different style without knowing your own style first. Otherwise, especially at an emerging level, you will get swept in and it’ll just be too much. Even with this production, ‘I have to say no, I’m making a decision, this is how it’s going to be.’ Just because something’s in trend, doesn’t mean you should always choose it. It has to be right for the story. I always have to ask myself ‘does it serve the story?’  And sometimes it won’t.

Our review of Five, Six, can be found here.

[Review] Five, Six by Nicholas Tan

By Michael Wood

Earlier this month the METIOR team had the privilege of attending a preview performance of Nicholas Tan’s upcoming Fringe Festival show Five, Six here at Murdoch’s own Studio 411. Adapted from an award winning ten-minute piece, which Tan wrote but did not direct, the feature-length incarnation of the story marks Tan’s directorial debut.

Five, Six presents an intimate and immersive portrait of the lives of Andy and Joel, small-town brothers battling to maintain a sense of normalcy in the absence of their oft-travelling parents. Life for the brothers is made all the more difficult by the younger Joel’s seemingly undiagnosed OCD and the elder Andy’s struggle with his own sexuality—a struggle which drives the play’s action. Both Andy and Joel find counsel in Andy’s best friend, Max. In contrast to Andy, Max is openly gay and often finds himself as the mediator in Andy and Joel’s relationship. Helping each to grasp the other’s emotional complexities and better navigate life as a unit, even when Andy’s actions would leave Max entirely justified in leaving, Max’s compassion, guidance and love for the brothers often becomes the moral compass of their lives.

The construction of the narrative must be applauded. The events of Five, Six are not inherently driven by action, but rather by the emotional arc Andy embarks on throughout the story. At first glance the story is one of rejection by society, in which the brothers try and fail to assimilate into their surroundings. In reality it is a story of hope, and of finding goodness in those around you even when traditional sources of guidance are unwilling or unable to help.

Each of the three protagonists has a distinct emotional imprint which informs Tan’s decisions as a writer. Boiled down to its bare bones it is essentially a series of conversations, and yet the drama is gripping. For a narrative which covers such a wide range of issues, from mental illness to sexuality to familial discord, Five, Six is shockingly lean. Tan clearly understands his characters very deeply and the precision with which he selects which moments from their lives the audience shall be privy to demonstrates just how strong a writer he is. The elegance of the script was reflected in the performance’s blocking. The stage was occupied only by the actors and a handful of props which were rarely on stage at the same time. This felt entirely appropriate for a play about absence, isolation, and the question we so often ask ourselves: what is missing?

Each of the four actors delivered strong performances. Given the youth of the cast (all but one are under the age of twenty-one) their ability to connect with the audience was impressive. As Andy, Noah Way’s performance was an achievement. Way managed to create layers which left the viewer acutely aware of what was bubbling beneath the surface. Calum Costello displayed a level of commitment to Joel’s obsessive tics that elevated the piece to greater heights, while Josh McGee’s soft and stoic portrayal of Max felt natural and sympathetic.

While not perfect (because what is?), it was clearly a love for the craft which made Five, Six work so well. As debuts go Tan can certainly be proud of what he has achieved with this production. We thoroughly recommend Five, Six and expect to see some truly great work from Tan, and all involved, in the future.

Five, Six is showing at Studio 411, Murdoch University South Street Campus from the 21st to the 23rd of February. Tickets can be purchased from  https://fringeworld.com.au/whats_on/five-six-fw2018

[Review] Meal Tickets

By Raviv Mezhubovski

Meal Tickets is a documentary directed by Mat de Koning which explores the journey of a Western Australian rock band called Screwtop Detonators and later on another band called Will Stoker & The Embers, both whom are trying to break into the music industry. It shows the trials, adventures, struggles and difficulties that comes with being in a rock band and the music industry. This documentary was filmed over 10 years.

This film was amazing. It had different emotional moments, from happiness to sadness to uncertainty. It makes you want to watch how the band evolves through time and it hits you with sadness when you discover that they have not made it big. The characters were great and were constantly developing and growing when adversities popped up, bringing a sense of suspense that had you ask yourself the important film question of “What will happen next?” The story lines helped make the plot and story relatable and interesting.

On my first viewing of the film during Revelation Film Festival, I found the narrative confusing and lacked direction. However, after rewatching it yesterday, I was wrong; De Koning’s narration helps tell the story when the video shows the story of the two bands. It was a unique ride from beginning to end, and I enjoyed every moment of it. This film is very useful not just for aspiring and current musicians, but also to any one who want to be a part of the entertainment business. Must watch! 10/10

The line with social media stalking.

You told yourself you’d go to sleep at 10. Now its 2 AM and you’re 2008 deep into your ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend’s younger brother’s Facebook posts. Your eyelids start to droop; your thumb begins to tire and it’s only the pure adrenaline of one slip away from a like that sustains you. Maybe your brain even unhelpfully supplies scenarios where you commit the ultimate stalking mistake –the accidental share. Once that happens, you can only look down at your shaking hands, at the carnage you’ve caused, and think – how did it ever come to this? All that’s left is to wait for the inevitable nuclear war with North Korea because your social status is already dead. Goodbye, Insta-fame.

For those of us whose careers in social media stalking continue, it’s become a really acceptable part of life. Whether it’s because you want to make sure your tinder match isn’t a creep, find out if the girl your friend likes are hot or see if your ex is miserable without you – pretty much everyone has a quick stalk now and then. On multiple occasions, new friends have messaged me and openly admitted to stalking my profile after I accepted their request. It’s definitely the done thing and people aren’t afraid to admit it.

But can there be times where stalking someone on social media crosses the line into not-okay territory?


Cyberstalking is a crime in Australia, and although a regular peek at your ex-boyfriend’s Instagram likes doesn’t make you a proper criminal, if someone’s repeatedly contacting you on social media in a way that makes you feel threatened and uncomfortable that definitely crosses the line! It’s always good to know what your rights are in this kind of situation and don’t be afraid to ask for help, but of course, the first step you can take is hitting that block button!

While that line might be clear, there’s a lot of things that can be less transparent on the stalking scale – and not just harmful to the person you’re keeping tabs on, but harmful to you too.

If you love Aubrey Plaza, you might have heard about Ingrid Goes West, a movie where she becomes obsessed with this woman who has the ‘perfect life’ on Instagram so she literally moves across the country and steals her dog in order to engineer them becoming buds. That’s real extreme – but it’s easier than you might think to become obsessed with the lives of ‘influencers’ whether it’s Kylie Jenner or a girl from uni with 10K followers, buying what they wear or eating where they eat (although in Perth you’re probably just obsessed with good brunch, like literally everyone else).

If you wanted, you could literally know where a friend or partner was every second of the day.


Whether it’s someone you know or someone you don’t, spending more time stalking what other people are doing online rather than doing the numerous other things that could be doing isn’t a healthy habit. In fact, a study in the journal of Cyberpsychology, Behaviour and Social Networking found that regularly ‘stalking’ a partner on social media after a distressing break-up can be really unhealthy and enable obsessive and dependent behavior, as well as making it harder to move on.

Social media sites aren’t making it easier for us though. Responding to consumer demand, Instagram and Facebook have both unveiled the story functions (tbh no one’s using that FB one tho lmao) which means that across those and Snapchat we’re seeing what our friends are doing often you actually have to put in more effort not to know what they’re up to. And while location Facebook and Instagram had the OG location tagging function, Snapmaps takes it to a whole new level. If you wanted, you could literally know where a friend or romantic partner was every second of the day.

Ultimately, stalking someone on social media is usually harmless. It can give you lots of useful information: like when you accidentally forget someone’s name you met but you know their friends, or you want to know if someone’s single. But it’s too easy to be blasé about the fact that it’s only getting easier for someone to find out information about you from your social media. Sure, posting a few photos is harmless, but what happens if someone pieces all that information together?

Will they know something about you that you’d rather they didn’t?



Words: Georgia Renee



Book Review: You must be very intelligent by Ulrike Trager.

Karin Bodewits’ partly autobiographic book “You must be very intelligent – The PhD Delusion” is a revealing, tongue in cheek tale about PhD life. We first meet Karin as an idealistic, yet naïve student who wants to add to our knowledge of the world and make a difference in the science world. She jumps at the chance to do her PhD thesis at the prestigious University of Edinburgh- surely the best place to accomplish her goals. 42 chapters and three years later Karin is a different person – frustrated, disheartened and feed up with science. What happened? The realisation that working at a high-ranked university does not protect from choleric, over-enthusiastic supervisors, who change your project every five minutes before losing interest in your work; unsocial, power-mad lab mates trying to steal your publications or underfunded labs making it hard to do any meaningful experiments.

The book shows a PhD student struggling with, for academics all so familiar, bouts of feeling insufficient, lonely, anxious and the pressure to perform to your own standards and what you think others expect of you. That and the reality of science politics – authorship in publishing is rarely fair, lack of job perspectives and security – makes this book a revealing and realistic peek behind the curtain of science. This may sound like a depressing affair, but “You must be very intelligent” is full of witty anecdotes, such as professors sending virtual pets to pretty PhD-students or PostDocs blowing up hotel rooms with dry-ice, making the book a truly enjoyable, yet realistic, read.

For academics, this book will remind them of their own journey and that they are not alone in their struggles. Potential PhD students can use it to make an informed decision and not be blinded by the promise of a perfect science world. “You must be very intelligent” is full of good advice, like the importance of choosing the right PhD position. Knowing the pitfalls, you hopefully ask the right questions at your interview. But this book is not just for academics. Everyone thinking PhDs must be very intelligent can learn a lot from this book and understand scientists a bit better in the process. Indeed, that is what the author intended: “I actively chose to write it humorously and, as a friend pointed out, ‘Sex and the City and Science’ style. I do want to show that scientists are a hilarious, somehow odd bunch of perceived brainiacs, but that at the same time we are also just human beings like anyone else.“

By the end of the book, you may wonder if Karin has given up on science, or at least the way science is conducted these days. But asked if she would do it again her answer is clear: “Yes, science is great! I was naïve and unlucky and rushed my decision about which PhD programme to join. I would still choose a scientific field for my undergrad studies if I were to choose again. Scientists have been proven to be more open-minded and flexible compared to other people. At the same time, we are less sociable, more arrogant and dominant. Not surprising; it is a somewhat uncanny bunch of people and in most universities we are not punished for our strangeness. It is scientific output that counts. To a certain extent, academia seems to be a drip can of weird personalities, where everyone is welcome. It makes for a strange but interesting workplace. It is this environment, where you have the freedom of being yourself, which, despite its drawbacks, I came to love. So, I’d probably decide for a PhD again. A different PhD.”  I think this answer sums up the spirit of the book perfectly. While it is in large parts the tragic story of painful PhD experience, it is also light-hearted and full of lessons. It does not mean science is all bad. Just that there are areas that need to be worked on by the science community. And books like this will help as it starts a conversation.

You must be very intelligent – The PhD Delusion by Karin Bodewits’

Review by Ulrike Träger

Purchase the book here: “You must be very intelligent – The PhD Delusion”

ISBN 978-3-319-59321-0


9 Perth rappers to watch in 2018.

Here are 9 Perth rappers to look out for in 2018.

Personally, mainstream Australian hip-hop still hasn’t quite managed to find it’s feet. For me, breakthrough groups like Hilltop Hoods, Horror Show and Bliss N Eso have been progressive for Aussie hip-hop only in that they’ve helped launch it into the somewhat mainstream. However, when artists have to conform to a set of expectations to get commercial play time, their style can become oversaturated. What should be encouraged in Australian hip-hop is originality, innovation, a progressive message, and like Australia’s multicultural society – embrace music and sounds from everywhere. For me, over the past few years, the majority of Perth artists on the scene have been listenable but their lack of ingenuity has failed to really get me excited about hip-hop in my city. However, over the past year, I have been blown away by Perth’s up and coming hip-hop talent. Here are nine artists progressing Australian hip-hop with their own unique sound and making the Perth scene a force to be reckoned with.


Toyotomi Hideyoshi Rocket Ships

Toyotomi Hideyoshi has been active on the Perth hip-hop scene since 2012. Toyotomi produces an atmospheric cloud trap sound infused with an unlimited flow of mellow, rugged vocals which seem to hit the beat precisely where they need to. ROCKETSHIPS was released last month and is Toyotomi’s first full-length LP release – Get it while it’s hot here. 

Label: Boogie Nights


Split Figure perth rapper

Butter smooth flows and catchy R&B hooks. Fremantle artist Split Figure has only entered the scene a couple of years ago, but bangers like Persian Wine and Brûlée prove he’s got a bright future ahead of him. Stream his latest EP Créme De La Créme on Spotify or Soundcloud.

Label: Unsigned


tsoko s.o.x rapper

T$oko fka S.O.X aka Tinashe Soko is a Zimbabwean born, Perth based rapper. Solid tracks like Blasphemy/ The Mirror honor hip-hops true roots while hard-hitting singles like Parlay and his latest release 4th Quarter bring the heat to the table. It’s no suprise he supported Future when he came to Perth in September earlier this year. T$oko linked up with Perth producer Jimmy Drones recently for his latest single 4th Quarter, and it BANGS so check it out here… PULL UP!!

 Label: Co-sign A$AP MOB *


Llehna perth rapper

Llehna is (Including Toyotomi) another member of Perth group TUFFBOYS and has recently released an EP of his own. Llehna’s latest EP Llenhas World is definitely one to listen to. It’s Fast, lyrically creative and almost every track contain hooks that are catchy AF – “swiper no swipey”.  Check out Llenhas World on Soundcloud here.

Label: Boogie Nights


pow negro perth rapper

Fast, crazy and out-of-this-world creative. Fremantle’s hip-hop/ jazz group POW! Negro produce a unique sound that brings a whole lot of energy to the table. I haven’t seen a Perth band blow up as fast as these guys did – and I’m not surprised either. You’re lucky if you caught these guys live at Code Red festival earlier this month – They are killing it and there’s no stopping them. Their latest EP is called Jasmine & Licorice and you can stream it on Spotify here. They will also be releasing a new single ‘Flesh Off The Bone’ on November 25th at Jack Rabbit Slims. See you there.

Label: Unsigned


hyclass rapper perth

Maori/Samoan rapper HYCLASS produces some insanely catchy beats which compliments her world-class flow. Her latest project I NEED YOU is a must listen. Her EP offers some ol’ fashioned raps and hip-hop beats that everyone can vibe to. She recently supported Marksman Lloyd at The Sewing Room and you can check out her full length EP on bandcamp here.

 Label: Unsigned


ziggy ramo perth rapper

Ziggy Ramo’s music provides an insight into the silent injustices of Aboriginal Australia among other social issues. Ramo’s productions range from poppy funk hits like his latest track YKWD to tracks provide a strong and hard-hitting message like Black Thoughts. Check him out on Spotify or Soundcloud.

Label: Ramo Records


And Beyond perth rapper

And Beyond comprises of rapper Insane the Prince and producer ZYTGYST. Insane’s mellow vocals and catchy lyrics make me want to listen for hours. The duo produce a clean, creative and modern sound which compliment their contemporary discourse on topics affecting the youth of today. Check them and their latest single 2 Cents on Soundcloud here.

Label: Unsigned


lbfrmikey perth rapper

LBFRMikey spits evocative, smooth and R&B infused flows as well as hooks that prove the upcoming artist’s mature talent. Mikey frequently links up with Perth producer talent Dub A and together they create a world-class sound. Stream his latest single KATRINA here.

Label: Unsigned


Check out a playlist featuring all these artists below:


By Harry Cunningham