TWO things I learnt from the MasterChef launch was that food served on suspended swings can induce giddiness and Jamie Oliver has turned down offers to appear on the program in other countries but said yes to the Oz version that launches on Sunday. Expect screaming and squealing when the contestants find out the Naked Chef has entered the kitchen. The British foodie who has been ribbed for looking tubby when he's meant to be leading the war against tubbiness is waving the rolling pin again for his foundation, this time for the global Food Revolution Day on May 19. Oliver wants you to ''stand up for real food'' by creating a food event or holding a dinner party with fresh ingredients and no processed food. Comestibles found in the freezer section of the supermarket and zapped in the microwave won't cut it. Well-nourished Oliver is maintaining the rage about obesity after espousing his ''dietary activism'' with MasterChef's cuddly judge Matt Preston at the Regent Theatre in March. Oliver wants less lard in the larder - and signing on as an Aussie food revolution ambassador is Andrew Heslop, the founder of Neighbour Day. May 19 is a Saturday and ideal for a dinner party, and while Oliver wants you to ''stand up for real food'', he'll understand if you want to sit down while eating it.
Foreman directs his 40th
YOU don't have to be Einstein to detect a trend. Rob Mascara, aka ''Belvedere'' to Bert Newton during the GMA days, turned 40 and 71-year-old showgirl Maria Venuti flew down from Sin City to sing Happy Birthday. Then musical director John Foreman turned 40 and La Venuti repeated her act. Foreman was 19 when the shenanigans began with Moonface and he later worked on Carols by Candlelight, the Logies, Australian Idol and most recently, the reincarnated Young Talent Time, which didn't replicate Idol fever but Foreman said it was ''lots of fun''. At the party were singer Silvie Paladino, Foreman's manager, Richard Macionis, and Leanne Mercer, GMA's former executive producer who now steers Postcards. Baby-faced Foreman cannot believe he is 40 and relived his youth by jazzing up the party with fairy floss, popcorn, hot dogs and slushies.
Enchanted evenings for McCune
TELEVISION'S favourite girl next door, Lisa McCune, will be swaying in the breeze when the musical South Pacific opens at the Princess Theatre on September 13. Cast as nurse Nellie Forbush, McCune co-stars with opera singer Teddy Tahu Rhodes as plantation owner Emile De Becque in the first joint production between Opera Australia and producer John Frost. McCune, a multi-talented mother of three, has wrapped up filming Reef Doctors for Channel Ten and is looking forward to performing in the Rodgers & Hammerstein Broadway show with a strong World War II story. Eddie Perfect had rave reviews playing Warnie in Shane Warne: the Musical and will be just as frisky when playing womanising sailor Luther Billis. Excited about starring in his first musical, Perfect said at the launch: ''I'm very excited to be losing my virginity with you guys.'' Kate Ceberano will play grass-skirt vendor Bloody Mary and although the singer wasn't present yesterday, she was honoured with a goodie in the media kit: a can of Bloody Mary mix.
Does your mum want measles?
PERFUME or a massage voucher are some options as Mother's Day gifts but Geoffrey Rush and Erica Packer have another suggestion: give your mum measles. What the UNICEF ambassadors are trying to say is: purchase a measles vaccine for children in disadvantaged countries - $31 will buy 100 vaccines and the feel-good factor is priceless. That's small change for Mrs Packer, the wife of billionaire James and mother of Indigo and Jackson, who became an ambassador in 2008 and went to Laos in 2011 to see Third World education problems through her own eyes. They certainly put First World problems into perspective.