The team at Dancehouse present a re-creation of acclaimed performances by Sara-Jane Norman, Carly Sheppard, Nacera and Dalila Belaza. The main theme of the whole night is Border lines between society, body, mind, culture, and time. At the entrance patrons are presented an option to contribute to the play by sharing their belongings to be included in the first part of the show: The Rivers Children. The concept from Sarah-Jane Norman presents subtle yet somewhat distressful life of a woman doing her everyday chores amidst a peaceful nature surrounding. The play conveys the sadness and tragedy ingrained in the hearts of Aboriginal communities after the meaningless massacres in Australian colonial history.
At the entrance to the next play “Take this, For This is My Body” and “Heirloom” the viewer is presented with warning signs that the next scenes involve provocative use of blood. At first spectators get into a state of shock and some even start sweating from seeing the act unfold. As viewers leave the room the sense of dismay slowly transitions into calm and regret for the acts of cruelty during the early days of settlement.
After seeing the stories from Australian history the show transitions into conceptual views over culture, entertainment and the state of the mind of modern society. The contemporary artistic dance “The Shout” choreographed by Nacera Belaza and performed by her together with her sister Dalila explores the impact of globalization. The viewer is presented with the link between mind and pace of life. In old times the inner world is shown in balance during the cultural rituals. Slowly, as the human society accelerates in its life style the initial tranquillity turns into abrupt, chaotic and sometimes destructive state of mind. In the post-modern representation the world is shown as a place where human thought would no longer differentiate space and dimension and eventually would end up in a standstill.
SET 1 OPENING NIGHT (BTS, RINWAY: BIANCA SPENDER, FLANNEL, ROMANCE WAS BORN AND ZHIVAGO) press release: Khaalid Moola
The stand out event personally for the weeks shows
The show showcased an ensemble of looks, styles and from over 15 designer's such as Akira, Collette Dinnigan, George Gross, Harry Who, Jag, John Cavill, Prue Acton, Stuart Membery, Tea Rose Couture and Third Millennium
Adam Heath took us through the archives of Australian Fashion history and its close relation to Australia's most celebrated artists. The run was blast from the past with visual timeline of Australian Fashion from the '60s till today. With music relevant to each decade.
The pieces had members of the audience from the different decades reminiscent of their youth, recalling the trends and fashion culture they where brought up wearing, from Go go boots, denim jackets all the way to the retro knitwear of the 90s
SET 2 DAY 2 EVENT 1 (BTS and RUNWAY) Adam Heath Boutique 50 years photos and artcle: Khaalid Moola
The stand out event personally for the weeks shows
The show showcased an ensemble of looks, styles and from over 15 designer's such as Akira, Collette Dinnigan, George Gross, Harry Who, Jag, John Cavill, Prue Acton, Stuart Membery, Tea Rose Couture and Third Millennium
Adam Heath took us through the archives of Australian Fashion history and its close relation to Australia's most celebrated artists. The run was blast from the past with visual timeline of Australian Fashion from the '60s till today. With music relevant to each decade.
The pieces had members of the audience from the different decades reminiscent of their youth, recalling the trends and fashion culture they where brought up wearing, from Go go boots, denim jackets all the way to the retro knitwear of the 90s
SET 3 DAY 2 EVENT 2 (BTS and RUNWAY) WA Desgner Capsule photos and artcle: Khaalid Moola
WA designer capsule, brought us a view into WAs most talented designers showcasing lux basic, bohemian style and relaxed elegance looks of this season featuring Bruug, House of SKYE and Natalie Rolt.
First up House of SKYE brought us the looks of the summer wear. Ranging from the summer dresses we all envy to wear, to the swimwear that is all to familiar of WA beach goers.
Next up BRUUG brought us a splash of bright colours to daily wear for this coming Spring and Summer looks
And finally Natalie Rolt gave us the direction of WAs elegant looks for the red carpet and the pool side
SET 4 DAY 3 EVENT 1-2 (BTS and RUNWAY) Myer Lunch and Two Events press release: Manish Bolla
Myers fashion lunch and 2 more events Event 1 - Myers Fashion Lunch @ Perth convention centre overlooking the swan river and Elizabeth quay - Runway with some amazing view. Special appearance by Super model and Myer's brand Ambassador Jennifer Hawkins. Jennifer Hawkins is an Australian Super model, brand ambassador, entrepreneur, television presenter and beauty queen best known for being crowned Miss Universe Australia in 2004 Afternoon was presented with red carpet arrival. Vvip and A listers Spent afternoon indulging in canapes and a delicious two-course lunch accompanied by the finest Australian wines and enjoyed an exclusive preview of the latest Spring/Summer looks from Myer's line up of leading Australian designers including Alex Perry, Morrison and Aje. Event 2 - Design Runway by Manning Cartell. Personnel experience : The runway showed some exquisite dresses where antiquity meets modernization. Leading Australian designers Manning Cartell will debut their Diaphanous Resort 17 collection at TPFF. Utility meets femininity in a light minded collection that merges modern romanticism with industrial elements. Bold graphic stripes contrast vibrant colour clashes, rich textures and patterns in a luxurious mix of layering, deconstruction and movement Event 3 - Designs by Whole 9 Yards Personal experience photographing the event : Exquisite use of floral and lace. Design showed from casual wear to evening wear. Easy flowing summer dresses. Amazing setup of the stage which took this runway to the whole new level. Singaporean label Whole9Yards will make their first Australian runway appearance with their Spring/Summer 17 collection.The collection exudes femininity through their signature use of lace, embriodery and floral motifs, while the effortless styling and creative approach to fabric manipulation infuses the feminine designs with a sense of coolness.
SET 5: DAY 4 EVENT 1 (BTS, and Future Runway: Costume, Eco Wear, Evening, Ready To Wear Men, Ready To Wear Women and Winners) press release: Khaalid Moola
The runway featured WA's future leading designers showcasing students works from WA's top Fashion Institutions and universities. The works where made to fit the following categories: -Ready to wear Women's -Ready to wear Men's -Evening wear -Eco Design -Costume Personally the Evening wear category showcased some fantastic pieces that exhibited some new cutting edge styles that I can definitely foresee hitting the red carpet in the years to come.
SET 6: DAY 4 EVENT 2 (BTS, and Future Runway: Costume, Eco Wear, Evening, Ready To Wear Men, Ready To Wear Women and Winners) press release: Khaalid Moola
One fell swoop proved to be one of the most memorable runways of the Fashion Festival Showcasing their Spring/Summer and Resort 17 collections. The runway was decorated with a stylishly draped mannequins and fog to reflect the elegant drape influenced design and attention to detailed dresses.
SET 7: DAY 4 EVENT 1 press release: Manish Bolla
Small brief for day 4 Witnessed some amazing designs by fashion design students. This shows WA gas some amazing artists to offer. Runway was truely Incredible. The most promising student designers from WA's leading fashion institutions and universities will showcased their exciting original designs in this Festival favourite. Featuring student designs in categories including: Ready-to-wear Womenswear Ready-to-wear Menswear Evening Wear Eco Design Costume Regards Manish MK Creative Imagery
SET 8: DAY 5 EVENT 1 (BTS and Runway) press release: Khaalid Moola
Runway 1 - Empire Rose Witness the most phenomenal modern dresses from this very talented designer. In another phenomenal runway event, Empire Rose will immersed runway into a world of modern haute couture, where the divinely decadent meetes uber cool street style. A majestic tapestry of jacquards cascaded into a landscape of burnished copper sequins alongside exaggerated shapes, painting a picture that is simultaneously of this moment and timeless. Runway 2 - New Generation Personnel experience : The amazing dress display of Perth's amazing emerging designer were absolutely mind blowing. Future of WA fashion up close in the cutting-edge runway show featuring the original collections from five of WA's talented emerging designers. Featuring: Elle Campbell Remi Lane Tamara Loo Lyndal Malarkey Rosemaree White
SET 10: DAY 5 press release: Manish Bolla
Venue : Art Gallery of WA
Finale night was buzzing with Perth's A Lister's. Show started with red carpet arrival and cocktail session. runway we saw the most extravagant dresses and head gear from WA's most talented designer and flower artists.
Runway featured some amazing dresses, some mind blowing head pieces and flower art.
Designer Empire Rose showcased the most usual and extravagant dresses Perth has ever seen. Truly deserving a standing ovation.
Western Australia's own Caris Tiivel - Miss Universe Australia 2016 walked the most amazing runway and was a show stopper.
Manish's final comments:
"Fashion is the armour to survive the reality of everyday life." So said the late Bill Cunningham. The eccentric, the avant-garde, the true brilliance of design in it's finest form; The Art of Fashion. That is precisely what this group of WA's most progressive designers will be celebrating in this spectacular showcase to close the 18th Festival. Bewildering to the eye, curious to the senses and like nothing Perth has ever seen featuring millinery by Reny Kestel and floral design by Rebecca Grace of Natural Art Flowers.
TRAVELLING: MELBOURNE EVENTS:
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: FALLING APPLES NEW website review: Irina Ivanova
Falling Apples Produced by Verve Studios, presented by La Mama theatre
During the Fringe Festival this year the magnificent Kensington Town Hall welcomed under its roof the cast of 13 actors presenting ‘Falling Apples’ – a new play by La Mama theatre. Written by a Norwegian playwright Lene Therese Tiegen, the play was done in the best Chekhovian traditions. Sympathetically but without embellishments it portrays the common situations people are born in and ways they choose to respond to them and build a future for themselves.
The large hall was transformed into a massively long stage with strong acoustics of a high ceiling building. The audience was offered to take a seat in the single line of chairs facing the actors spread across the improvised stage. The unusual setting of the play, skillfully directed by award winning Peta Hanrahan, was very exciting. Mysteriously lit by mobile phone torches, the show began.
Started off in chaos of what looked like a Brownian motion, where actors moved across the stage in random directions, colliding with one another only occasionally and definitely on purpose, the choreography revealed particular patterns in their routes and actions. At some points two or three characters coincided into flares of short dialogues and then returned to their silent floating around. In the beginning the plot was a bit of a challenge to follow. However eventually everything took its place and became clearer. The play gradually developed a few storylines in parallel, slowly intertwining the lives of 13 characters into one wide web of relations.
A special character was attentively overlooking all that was happening in the lives of others. That was a young woman who had been confined in a painting for 500 years by her father, jealous of his daughter’s artistic talent. Being looked at and analyzed for all this time, the young woman now had a chance to observe other people’s life dramas. She compassionately involved into their emotional states and tried to help, thus playing a role of a mediator in the service of good will and reconciliation.
In the culmination of the play the whole cast of actors sat in a line right opposite the line of spectators. It felt so freaky and intimidating, but at the same time even more intriguing. All the secrets were finally revealed, the masks were dropped, and the characters unfolded all their quirks and dilemmas.
The extraordinary staging and talented performance of the cast, which was assembled of independent actors and Stage Verve graduates, made the play a unique, unforgettable experience.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: BRIDESMAID TO BE NEW website review and photos: Anstasia Thomas
Welcome to the party, called wedding! What a complex job for a bridesmaid to be is as you are in charge of speech preparations, gifts, costumes, activities and creating an atmosphere of celebration. A wedding can be fulfilled with quirks, funny stories, unpredictable events and odd guests with their life stories to tell. Humour can release the stress and tension of the wedding! So, if you are hunting for a quirky, hilarious and very Australian presentation of how the wedding needs to be performed and personalities that are involved in the wedding process, please, come and see this show! All of the sudden you find yourself in the small and cosy room on the roof top in North Melbourne where the performance occurred. It felt like you came to the main character’s home for a visit. Unusual transformations of one actor who delivered different personalities in the wedding kept changing one after another. Are you a quite friend who wants to skip the whole event and just read? Or you are a breastfeeding mother who was invited to the wedding and being judged by society? May be you are a friend from Toorak who likes to party and seeking to give a speech in front of the crowd? All these roles were easy recognisable and shown with a glimpse of satire. The performance extravagancy at times and also nudity were not designed for the conservative because the main actress presented stereo types found in Australia introducing costumes that highlighted and enhanced each personality that you can meet in weddings. Now we know what to expect from real celebrations when people get together! This comedy obtained a hash tag as “very funny “on the wall of Courthouse Hotel and we now know why. If you are up for good laugh and a girl’s night out, this 50 minute show is recommended.
Review by Anastasia Thomas 30.09.16 “Bridesmaid to be” Courthouse Hotel – The Dock
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: 4 + 4 = 4 NEW website review: Elmira Navid and Media Rangi
4 + 4 = 4 Aerial theatre! At the Gingerbread House inside Emerald City, North Melbourne Meat Market, we were transported to a surreal world ruled by the mighty ropes. The Flying Xamels’ unique dreamy storytelling presents four intertwined narratives. We can see elements of ourselves in each character as we watch them swing through their life journey, interacting with one another in various ways.
Though the beauty of such abstract visual art lies in endless possibilities of subjective interpretations, some of the themes include trial and persistence. Each character is determined and focused on a personal quest while conversing with one another in the vertical space of what we may take as a metaphor for our chaotic world.
The dream-like slow and gentle performance is interrupted by a lurking figure transgressing into the stage violently. He jumps and rolls, breaking the staged calm, destroying the drawing artist’s creative expressions over and over until he gives up... The last message is far too powerful to break down: are our lives all a mere puppet show?
The artists’ technical skills and confidence while performing a collective narrative on ropes with breathtaking movements are indeed applaudable. Along with mood-setting stage props, complementary music and lighting works, this abstract reflection works well as an aerial play offering an abstract reflection on our everyday interactions and struggles.
The diversity of the cast is also worthy of mention. We can relate to the characters as we further recognize parallels with our own worlds. Though it may seem as a given, the art world does not always reflect the heterogeneity of our societies. To include a multiplicity of identities in this collective narrative highlights the overarching theme of our social existence.
This performance invites us to consider endless connections on our journey of becomings and dares us to persevere. We may retain our individuality by swinging only on our own ropes. However, in order to sustain harmony, we need to grow together, share our serenity, and integrate as a collective. Mediya Rangi
SALAM FESTIVAL MELBOURNE 2016 NEW website review by Jeanette Russel
By Compass & Quran I found this short film to be very informative and enlightening. Such a colourful eye opening story of the Muslim cameleers opening up so many parts of outback Australia that would not have been explored and indeed settled for many years if it hadn't been for their extraordinary courage, strength determination, and great work ethic. It explores the history of the Afgan Muslim cameleers, in Australia, over 150 yrs. This documentary covers many interesting topics regarding these cameleers, incorporating their journeys through the dessert within Australia. The film encompasses their lives living as Muslims in Australia and the opposition they experienced. How they often lived on the fringe of communities, was featured, and even problems relating to relationships and marriage. Information was sourced from newspapers and old films as well as the direct discentants and relatives of the cameleers. It was most interesting to have their perspective of various lives and journeys of the Muslims, and their experiences here. Historians weigh in with some facinating insights into challanges that so many of these men and women faced. The documentary was written and directed by Kuranda Seyit . While it was produced by Fadle El Harris. Kuranda Seyit was at the Salam Fest: muslim film festival, and kindly provided a Q & A with the audience, which was really educational. Seven years in the making this film provided him with opportunities to do research and meet with many people pertaining to the doco. His illuminating talk was great. He co‐founded the award winning “Goodness and Kindness Program” , and received the Pride of Australia medal in 2005. Fadle El Harris recieved "Most Outstanding Citizen of the Year" by Bankstown City Council for his teachings and contributions to N S W s colleges, TAFEs and communities. Thank you so much for the wonderful opportunity to review this film. I would like to give it 4/15 out of 5.
Nefertiti's Daughters I found this film to be moving, compelling and even confronting at times. Being able to review this documentary is something I am thankful for and appreciate the insight into the very challanging and sensitive issues that street artists and many people in Egypt have faced. The street artists featrued in the documentary find through their art a way to express messages of atrocicities and violence to humans, in their amazing and delicate art. Story's that unfold are of strong women, revolution and art. In the doco, we see the important role that the street art played to the artists during the Egyptian uprisings. Women artists were particularly featured getting across their messages of fighting for the rights of women in a society where they are so often brutilized and violated. Political transfomation and instability within the nation is at the fore, of these fasinating street art works. Captured is how Queen Nefertiti is there, in the art, fighting for women's freedom and rights in Egypt, now. Incorporated within these clever depictions are images of women rallying against acts of government cruelty against women. The art has played a pivotal role in modern Egyptian history. This doco is directed, produced and edited by Mark Nickolas. It is co-directed and produced by Elizabeth Van Meter. During viewing of the film I noticed it was focused on three prominent female artists. Bahia Shelab, Mira Shihadeh and Salma Samy. These women give their visions about the world, the trails, within their country and even within their gender. The score I would like to give this short film is 4 1/2 out of 5.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: JOURNEY OF A THOUSAND SMILES NEW website review: Irina Ivanova
Journey of a Thousand Smiles By Jessica Hackett and 5pound Theatre @ Melbourne Fringe Festival 2016
The idea of the show was born after Jessica Hackett, a spirited high school teacher, decided to walk from Melbourne to Canberra in order to deliver a petition calling for more humane and fair treatment of asylum seekers. Played passionately with genuine raw emotions, the Journey of a Thousand Smiles delivers some powerful stories of refugees describing the horrors from which they fled to Australia.
Deeply affected by the misfortunes of people stuck on Nauru, Jess was eager to express her disagreement with government’s actions. She believed that every human must have a welcoming spirit within and she wanted to prove it. And so she did! Jess was welcomed at many homes along the way, inspiring hope in people’s hearts.
Needless to say that Jessica has a delightful personality, so frank and sincere, that it is easy to imagine how people would open up to her with their intimate stories. When she talks about the uneasy lot of refugees, she beams with compassion and readiness to fight for them.
Everybody’s appreciated the smart move to include some amusing elements to lighten up the play: like the tale of Jess hunted by a cow, or Jess climbing over an electric fence. The audience laughed out loud and cheered. As if in an old silent movie, cute video fragments accompanied the storyline, and the incidental music enhanced the atmosphere of the presented situations.
Jess has spent 35 days on foot in sweltering summer heat, going through 50 townships. By the time she arrived at the Parliament house after 710 kilometers of walking she collected 17,000 signatures for ‘the welcome petition’.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: FAIRYTALE COOK BOOK NEW website review and photos by Anastasia Thomas
SHOW RUNS TILL OCTOBER 1 Once upon a time there was a group of magicians who came up with an idea of creating a Fairly Tale cook book story concept. Let’s pretend that there are lots of varieties of stories based on food ingredients and characters you personally choose. Let go your kid’s imagination and find yourself in a world of fairy tale that has never been written or produced. Four main actors, Mike, Katherine, Brenna, Gini and a passionate chef as the narrator, will put your ideas together and improvise on the spot! It’s an interactive 55 min duration show that engages mainly the audience of kids from 4 years old. Wicked stories included such characters as a frog, pirate, angry cat named Cleo, Unicorn, teasing Huntress, Giant called Mr Big and lots of others. Those characters ideas were presented in leaflets given to the audience for homework that could be finished and shared with friends. There were laughs among the viewers and the comedian element of the show could wake up the “fun part” of a parent sitting next door. The costumes of the characters were based on a basic pant and top in black concept. However, it needed some brightness in colour at times to enhance the effect of humour and support the performance with extra materials. Imagination of young kids is limitless when verbal and visual effects are joint in unison. The concept of letting your thoughts and imagination go was spot on. It’s great for young talents to learn what characters can be mixed in the pot. We are sure that the chosen ingredients will make a delicious dish and they will all live happily ever after…
Reviewed by Anastasia Thomas 30.09.16
LA DOLCE VITA: BROADWAY AND BEYOND NEW AT ELLA's MUSIC CLUB website review by Bryanna Reynolds
La Dolce Vita: Broadway and Beyond was one that definitely took me beyond through the tantalising and beautiful rhythms and beats played throughout the night.
Saturday the 17th of September was a night of majestical and awe inspiring musical combinations and pure talent. There is no way i could describe the night that would actually live up to being there and watching it in person.
Melbournites were treated to an evening with the gorgeous and extremely talented pianist Tamara Vasilevitsky. Tamara made my heart just glow with the love and warmth she sent through the audience watching through her beautiful songs being played.
If you ever get the chance to see her perform live i would highly recommend it. There is just something so magical about being in a room with a muscian who shares their musical vibes with you and allows you to escape to another time and place.
Whilst Tamara was playing i think the thing i loved the most was that she took you on a journey. The music guided you through your own memories associated with the broadway shows musical spectacular songs she was playing.
And if that wasn't good enough we were also treated to musical accompaniment by singers Rada Tochalna and Brett Kaye. I am a very involved person when it comes to music and the role it plays in our lives and when Rada and Brett sang their voices in the St Johns Uniting Church just took you up out of your seat to a place where you could have no possible worries.
They performed songs to everyones liking so i am sure there will be something for you no matter your taste and style. My favourite songs played were definitely the broadway songs they took me back to the streets of New York City and reminded me of so many fond memories. For anyone who has seen a broadway show you will know the atmosphere this creates when watching a live performance.
The beautiful essence that the trio captured was that reminiscent of watching a broadway musical and of course music from across the globe.
I cannot even begin to thank the three mucisians for what they provided on this one night of entertainment. It is obvious to see they have that electric audience connection that you only get with performances like theirs.
I look forward to seeing more great performances such as this one from the trio. I will definitely be following their progress as they become global superstars. All the best for the future.
Please make sure you check them out online across their social media platforms where you can connect with them and listen for updates on their musical journeys as one and together.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: MAN OF THE YEAR NEW website review by Irina Ivanova
Man of the Year 5pound Theater @ Melbourne Fringe Festival 2016
Chekhov’s gun has never been so close to firing…
In the spotlight of the 2016 Melbourne Fringe Festival there was the Man of the Year, recreating some of the most glorious moments in public speaking. Clad in a tailcoat and PJs, proudly stepping out in his slippers, Jason Cavanagh presented a new play by 5pound Theatre.
Opening up with a quote from the Bible that goes “The path of the righteous man…”, which we remember as Jules’ thundering monologue in Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, Jason took the audience in time for the most memorable speeches that were presented by political leaders of different countries. Those speeches touched people’s hearts, they influenced their mindsets, and created the history. Each leader put immense passion into his or her words, pulling just the right strings of their nation’s souls. They’ve got trust, they’ve got following, and the most importantly – they’ve got power. That is what the Man of the Year talks about: power and influence, justified violence and sacrifice for the big ideas.
For Jason Cavanagh it was a chance to experience the moments in history that moved him, to step into shoes of great public figures such as Dr. Martin Luther King and Susan B Anthony. However those shoes looked a little bit awkward on, and the persistent voice behind the stage (Sharon Davis) was questioning every weighty word the presenter was using, emphasizing the importance of appropriateness. Realistically, can a white Australian man talk on behalf of an African-American civil rights fighter or women’s rights advocate?
Jason’s performance was truly impressive especially when he behaved as a psychopath threatening to take the audience hostage with that Chekhov’s gun he brought in at the beginning. That move was a bit unexpected and made some viewers pretty nervous. However, it all ended well, revealing that his cruel intentions were only a joke. Isn’t it strange how this situation reminds the aftertaste of some political actions?
The script accentuated the controversial use of power by leaders such as Hitler and Saddam Hussein. Nevertheless their speeches had certain captivating rhythm, worth recreating for their mighty effect.
The play was directed by multitalented Tim Wotherspoon, who continually collaborates with various Melbourne theatrical companies as an actor, director, and sound designer. The diversity of angles from Tim’s total experience with theatre craft gives him the aptitude to present his ideas in the most effective way. Linking the leaders into a conspiracy theory and investigating the power of words, Man of the Year produces good arguments and food for thought.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: CIRCALICIOUS NEW website review by Elmira Navid
Circalicious is an acrobatic and aerial physical show. It is performed by the artists of Emerald City and local guests. A very entertaining show which took about an hour. Started with a solo entertainer who was the MC as well and ended with two stunningly beautiful hoop dancers.
The act is performed by the 50’s beach babe and all with a 50’s theme, making it the perfect way to start the show. The show continues to amaze with a silk rope dancer but with a twist, instead of the contemporary silk rope she involves an act of getting dressed on of the rope by undoing her outfit all tied on to the rope.
There seems to be a kids entertainer among other entertainers. The girl admits it herself that she usually performs for kids as you may assume it is quite an easy performance. However, the audiences were well engaged.
The show flows meticulously under the performance of two girls mastering the hoop dancing. They have trained for more than 1.5 years to master the tricks and perform at their excellence. They are simply amazing and they show the obvious skills, moving effortlessly.
Circalicious is a great show that entertains you for a full hour and it is recommended to be watched.
MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 2016: ISLAMOFARCIST NEW website review by Elmira Navid and Shane McInerney
Islamofarcist is a show about one man’s experiences as a young boy, growing up a Muslim in Pakistan, to living an adult life as an atheist in Australia. “Sami” educates the audience in the nuances of Islam and with the aid of a PowerPoint slide show, reflects on passages within the Quran that led him to ask uncomfortable questions of those in positions of religious authority, to which unsuitable answers were given. Hence his ‘conversion’. The typical ‘drive-byes’ (references) to the perceived wrong-doings and influence of the United States will appeal to the usual suspects. Whilst there is some irony in his revelation that a ‘racist’ Australia will allow him to express alternative views of Islam, that otherwise would have him condemned in his homeland. “Sami” engages the audience with his explanations of Islam ‘101’, in a light hearted, aussie, ‘piss-take’ approach that is both entertaining and educational, with a few laughs along the way.
TIVOLU THETAER OF PANTOMIMES: SNOW WHITE AND THE MAGIC DWARFS NEW website review and photos by Glen Wilson
Snow White and the Magic Dwarfs Tivoli Theater Pantomimes St John’s Church Hall 5 Finch St Street Malvern East.
Snow White and the Magic Dwarfs This was my 2nd visit to a Tivoli Theatre Pantomimes production and their latest production was as always, fantastic. Mix up a classic Disney story with classic Disney songs, add some Oliver, Grease, the Smurfs and just a touch of grown up humor to keep the mums & Dads amused and you have a great couple of hours entertainment.
The cast are excellent, and a special mention to the young performers who played the dwarfs with great acting and brilliant vocals.
The theatre seating is rows of tables and chairs, rather than traditional theatre seating, which gives a party atmosphere to the performance.
Tivoli Theatre is classic pantomime – just like I remember when I was a kid. Go along, take the kids and have a great time…. A special thank you to Alta for allowing us to come along and photograph and review the show. Glen GW Photography.
MELBOURNE MUSICIANS: TRICOLORE: THREE ITALIAN MAESTRI NEW website review by Chiara Paganini and Ivan Lubkov
September 18 at St Johns Church Southgate Conductor: Frank Pam Concert Program:
Pergolesi – Stabat Mater
Albinoni & Marcello Oboe Concertos
Tania de Jong AM – soprano Hamish Gould – countertenor Anne Gilby – Oboe The concert has been a wonderful opportunity for rediscovering some classical Italian music. It was organised by Melbourne Musicians and presented by Frank U. Pam, who is the artistic director. The concert was held at St Johns Southgate church and it saw the partecipation of Tania de Jong, acclaimed soprano and social entreperneur, the countertenor Hamish Gould and the oboist Anne Gilby. An orchestra of five violins, two violas, cello, bass, harpsichord and organ accompanied the soloists and it was directed by Frank Pam. The concert started with the oboist Anne Gilby's interpretation of the Concert in D minor, opera 9 number 2 composed by Tomaso Albinoni (1671- 1751). This was an amazing piece where the oboe was treated as a soloist. Anne, who has been principal oboe in Germany, in the Symphpony Australia Orchestra and in the Australia Chamber Orchestra, intepreted beautifully the two adagios, which formed the opera. The second part of the concert saw again the oboist Anne intepreting an opera of Alessandro Marcello (1684- 1750) called Oboe Concerto in D minor. The orchestra played a piece of Arvo Part (1935), which is an Estonian composer, originally written as choral work, but adapted for string orchestra. The third part saw the soprano Tania de Jong and the counter tenor Hamish Gould interpreting Stabat Mater, an opera of Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (1710 -1736). He was an Italian Romantic composer, who prematurely died and his work his surrounded by mistery due to his premature death. The lyric of the Stabat Mater has been attributed to Jacopone da Todi, an Italian poet and one of the major figures of mediaval Italy and an important influence on Italian Rinascimental poets. Tadia and Hamish sang this beautiful poem, which describes the Virgin Mary at the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ, begging for him to share her grief.
Frank Pam talks about music:
MELBOURNE LYRIC OPERA: OUR MAN IN HAVANA NEW website by Hootan Shah Hosseini and Ara Mehrabi
A Review on " Our Man in Havana" I am an amateur Tenor and I am more familiar with the Italian and German classic opera repertoire ,Just a listening to a contemporary opera composed by an Australian composer was an unusual , new and exciting experience for me . This is an extremely great work done by Melbourne Lyric Opera to bring an Australian Opera back on stage after years and deliver it so artistically . The Cuban decoration was done perfectly in the limited, available space which reflected a hot Latin American ambient,costumes which were fantastic and simply spot on. The chamber orchestra consisted of less than twenty musicians who were mostly young talented artists who were all nicely dressed up in Central American colourful shirts; they were all amazing and gave us the hope of having extraordinary artists for next Australian generation. Artistic Director has done a great job on the orchestra and acting cast - this was for sure. All the singers were impressive and they all did a great job , but it would a pity if I don't mention that I was very impressed by the Baritone of Mathew Thomas who delivered a wonderful job . Raphael Wong who was awarded the title one of Herald Sun Aria finalists this year sang her soul out and proved why he is a finalist in such a prestigious singing competition. Kate Adams, the soprano who was singing as Brambles's daughter was very confident and clear on top notes and delivered her Aria in the first act beautifully. At the end Martin Buckingham who played the main character (Mr.Bramble) after just three weeks of rehearsals did an extraordinary job; I have to admit he was great musically and technically but I just felt his voice (light lyric voice) did not suit this role completely and a heavier tenor voice (Dramatico/Spinto tenor) would deliver the right point more impressively.
by Hootan Shah Professional Veterinarian and Amateur classical singer
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL PIANO AWARD 2016 NEW website review by Jennifer Zaman
Australian National Piano Award Grand Finale 2016
The Piano Olympic was organised in the floodplain city of Goulburn river, Shepparton on a beautiful evening which was dedicated to the magic of creating music. For 24 long years this tradition of Piano awards have been carried on in Australia, and this year it attracted the same love and interest from music lovers. Aged between 21 and 35 years, 11 talented pianists from around the country competed for the top honour and prestigious national recognition, and $65,000 in cash and prizes. For six days, the artists played their best putting to test their training of years and three of them reached the grand finals held on the 10th of September. Under the profound attention of national media and music patrons, pianists Tony Lee from Sydney, Peter De Jager from Melbourne and Oliver She from Brisbane gave in their final best.
Tony, the first performer of the evening, played Sonata in B flat major and Dance Macabre offering a feast of various classic pieces that made the packed hall go all silent in amazement. The next performance was given by Peer who played Trancendental Etude, Tiento de medio registro, and Sonata in F minor and finished with “My Favourite Things”. After a short interval for the attendees, Oliver took over the stage and played Prelude Book 1, Rhapsodie Espagnole and Sonata in C major.
Each of the competitors played for about 50 minutes and bestowed the audience with a treat for life. Adjudicators Rolfe Plagge, Clem Leske and Diana Weekes must have had a hard time deciding on the winner at the end of the day.
However, after much deliberation, Tony Lee was announced the winner of the grand event. He took out the first prize of $25,000 plus other cash prizes and he said, “It’s been quite a musical journey and the experience has been positive and fruitful. Winning this Award helps me to remain focused on being true to myself and my music. Best of wishes and my thanks to the fellow pianists for the wonderful gift, that is making Music.”
Second place was awarded to Peter de Jager and Third place was awarded to Oliver She.
Prizes – 2016 Australian National Piano Award Tony Lee (Sydney) won FIRST PRIZE - Total Value $25,000 $20,000 - The City of Greater Shepparton Prize The winner will be awarded also a bursary of $5,000 for further music career development – The Daphne and Ross Turnbull Bursary
Peter de Jager (Melbourne) won SECOND PRIZE - Total Value $13,000 $10,000 - The Gaye and John Gaylard Prize. The winner will be awarded also a bursary of $3,000 for further music career development – The Daphne and Ross Turnbull Bursary
Oliver She (Brisbane) won THIRD PRIZE Total Value - $7,000 $5,000 - The Beleura, John Tallis Prize. The winner will be awarded also a bursary of $2,000 for further music career development – The Daphne and Ross Turnbull Bursary
All other finalists selected to play, who were not awarded first, second or third prize and who performed in all their required recital sessions, will receive $500 courtesy of GV Hearing Clinic.
Special Prizes- Best performance of the music of Bach - Peter de Jager (The Shepparton News Prize - $1,000) Best performance of the music of Haydn or Mozart or Beethoven - Peter de Jager (The Leona and Bruce Sterling Prize - $1,000) Best performance of the music of Chopin - Michael Li (The Pam Wells Prize- $1,000) Best performance of music from the Romantic era (excluding Chopin) or for the first half of the 20th century - Tony Lee (The Horton Family Prize - $1,000) Best performance of music written in or after 1951 - Oliver She (The Andreadis Family Australian Composition Prize - $5,000) TheLorna Speechley Memorial Prize - Joshua Hooke (TheLorna Speechley Memorial Prize for the People’s Choice - $5,000)
DANCEHOUSE: DE QUINCEY CO METADATA NEW website review by Jeanette Russel
This piece was quite fasinating. Over two parts the first for 20mins a solo piece by the very talented Tess de Quincey, former of the De Quincey Company. This enterprising lady has worked in Europe and other locations around the globe. She then came to Australia to introduce a dance practice called Body Weather by the Japanese Min Juku preformance group, before forming her own company. The first segment Pure Light was a marvellous use of light, shade, and shadows. Body sculpting,. stretching, twisting and shaping were also featured.This staging was artistic and I felt modernistic. It was based on an american artist Dan Flavin's minimalist art. Visual particles form and then reform, in continual waves,as a theme. The second dance introduced Peter Fraser who accompanied Tess.Its called Moths & Mathematics. Perter has worked under the Body Weather umbrella since 89. He performs and co directs for the Environmental Performance Group Authority company, He formed A movement called the Sounds Like Movement with Dale Gorfinkel. The principal behind this piece is unfolding space between two beings. The intensity of this dance built gradually till the end becoming quite energetic with the lighting, music and performances. The two I felt worked very effectively together. Mathmatical lines are drawn by the pair showing patterns that determine and shape human beings, and lives within nature . As well as putting out there, displays of possiblilties, relationship, and interactions. I found it to be unique, philosophical, creative ,and incorporating imagination. Anyone who appreciates idiosyncratic talents, and something distinctive will enjoy this De Quincey Co, construction. Thank you very much for the chance to review. Appreciate the opportunity.
Review: Ruben Guthrie By Casey Long Ruben Guthrie was made up of well-executed theatrical conventions, authentic performances and clever humour. The play follows Ruben as he accepts, handles and struggles with his drinking problem. It makes use of engaging characters, such as the over the top Boss and the gay best friend, colourful stagecraft with signage of important names or themes throughout the storyline, as well as use of famous and unknown songs to further the story. The song ‘Summer of 69’ was sung originally as a way for two friends to reminisce on old times together, but gradually turns into a blunt reality of how their lives turned out. The song was well chosen as it explores many of the same themes and it is well known and commonly misinterpreted. Each actor would also be a stage hand by bringing props to the actors in the current scene. They would stand in front of one of the walls in a neutral stance, and either hold their arms like hooks or a shelf or they would pass an object to another actor. It was a non-distracting and clever way to transition props. The story was a genuine expression of struggle and support. It was told in a thoroughly enjoyable way, separating meaningful moments with engaging scenes about well-known Australian slogans or drunken stories. The show was incredibly enjoyable and well done. It showcased many performance styles and the abilities of each actor. This was an eye opening story and was relatable for different generations in different ways. It was a brilliant play; it was ‘Ruben Guthrie’.
ZELMAN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA: AMERICAN STORY NEW review by Sylvester Kroyherr website
REVIEW OF CONCERT BY THE ZELMAN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA – ‘American Story’ Given at: XAVIER COLLEGE, Barkers Road, Kew on 10/9/2016. Conductor: Mark Shiell, Soloist: Philip Arkinstall (Clarinet) Venue: Eldon Hogan Performing Arts Centre.
Following a brief and informative pre-concert introduction by Mark Shiell, the packed audience rustled in anticipation, awaiting the Aaron Copland ‘Fanfare for the Common Man’. The short 5 minute piece thundered the emotions of war with crispness and clarity. To follow was George Gershwin’s ‘Porgy and Bess: A Symphonic Picture (Arranged by Robert Russell Bennett)’ that presented 11 segments featuring various melodies from the musical. The dramatic opening sections were contrasted by the soothing ‘Summertime’ theme with some colourful well balanced interactions between the two harps and the orchestra. The bouncy ‘I Got Plenty O’Nuttin’ followed, with a lovely fusion of the banjo that flowed into the thundering hurricane section, again contrasted by the rich strings portraying the feelings between Porgy and Bess. The fun continued at an exciting pace with good flow and lyrical prowess. It was interesting to see that in some sections the first violins were playing different parts and overall, the 25 minute piece finished in grand style.
The next piece before the interval was Aaron Copland’s ‘Concerto for Clarinet and String Orchestra with Harp and Piano’ (set for small orchestra). Philip’s masterly technique was evident from the start as he eased into the first movement with sublime gentleness. His playful cadenza was quite complex but he handled this beautifully, while the orchestra, harp and piano nurtured him along lovingly. The piano bridge connecting the first movement to the second was quite clever. However, the second movement was somewhat disharmonious with tricky syncopation, high register runs and agitation – reminiscent of Hitchcock’s ‘Psycho”! Though technically very difficult, the performance was stunning. To conclude this half, Philip treated the audience with a cheeky little encore – Gershwin’s ‘Walking the Dog’. This was a most delightful piece that was enjoyed not just by the audience but the orchestra (We noticed some huge grins and happy gestures from Mark!). Following the interval, the orchestra presented the ‘Cuban Overture’ by Gershwin that exploded into an exuberant and exotic Latin American carnival, packed with exciting local percussion instruments. The notable and expressive clarinet bridge led into the melancholy and dreamy section, ending with rhythmical flair, excitement and a well controlled crispy ending – concluding in about 15 minutes and priming the exuberant orchestra for the finale.
Leonard Bernstein’s ‘West Side Story: Symphonic Dances’ was the next offering. Set around his musical, this consisted of 9 segments encapsulating the essence of the piece and set for orchestra. From the beginning, the orchestra beamed of having fun, firstly with a strong interplay between the horns and strings. The song ‘Somewhere’ was especially touching that engaged the horns, strings, piano and harp. However, the most fun filled segments for all, were the ‘Mambo’ and ‘Cha-Cha’ with the orchestra adopting hats and scarves while having a ball! Yes they raised some laughs too! With the romantic touch of the strings and the 2 keyboards, the ‘Meeting Scene’ proved very heart warming to be followed by calm (Cool, Fugue)and the busy fighting theme (Rumble). In conclusion, the ‘Finale’ ended with a sensitive, though sad interplay between the flutes and strings leaving an air of fulfilment and love. The enthusiastic audience wanted more! As an encore, we were treated to ‘The Typewriter’ by Leroy Anderson (soloist Paul Coles / I think) [NM: was actually Roger Adams. as per ZSO note] – a truly fun piece that left everyone tickled and fulfilled.
A great end to the concert!
Full marks to Mark Shiell and the Zelman Symphony Orchestra, as we look forward to the next event in December 2016. A most enjoyable and enriching concert – congratulations to everyone, including all the volunteers! SYLVESTER KROYHERR (Singer/Musician/Architect) 14 September 2016
VICTORIAN STATE SCHOOLS SPECTACULAR 2016 website review and photos by Glen Wilson
Hisense Arena Saturday 10th September 1pm & 6 PM
3000 Victorian primary and secondary school students perform in an arena style spectacular not to be missed.
The Victorian State School Spectacular showcases the incredible talents of Victoria’s finest young Dancers, Musicians and Vocalists. Backed by a 1200 member choir, 8 backing vocalists and a world class 64 piece orchestra, the cast of 1200+ Mass dancers & Ensemble dancers deliver a brilliant performance.
The 3 Feature vocalists Imogen Spendlove, Isabella Clarke & Abby Pemmelaar are outstanding performers and absolutely shine with their stage presence and vocal abilities.
The production began 6 months ago with the creative director Neill Gladwin visiting the various regions, teaching dancers the routines for the mass dancers, all coming together this week to create an amazing dance production on a massive scale.
Behind the scenes is a massive task – coordinating dancers & Costumes, this is also run by students from The Victorian College of the arts, NIDA & Holmesglen College. The Victorian State School Spectacular is an outstanding achievement, giving young students the chance to shine both as artist and behind the scene. A huge thank you to Sonja McGill from McGill Publicity & Events for allowing me to cover this event. Glen GW Photography.
Cast List 30 x Principal and Ensemble Vocalists 8 x Backing Vocalists 64 x Victorian State Schools Orchestra 40 x Victorian State Schools Choir 1200 plus x Victorian State Schools Mass Choir Singers 32 x Principal and Ensemble Dancers 1200 plus x Victorian State Schools Mass Dancers 23 x Victorian State Schools Roller Skaters 2 x Circus Artistes 1 x Magician 1 x Beatboxer 8 x Puppeteers 16 x Hip Hop Dancers – Hoppers Crossing Secondary College 70 x Production Crew from Secondary / Holmesglen / VCA / NIDA
THE WOMAN IN BLACK review by Kieran McNamara photos by Kieran McNamara
The Woman In Black
On Sunday I made the trip from Melbourne out to The Memo in the beautiful town of Healesville to watch the play The Woman In Black by Stephen Mallatratt and Susan Hill. The play was also performed in the Upper Yarra Arts Centre, Warburton making great theatre accessible to audiences. It was directed by Justin Stephens and staring Chris McLean and Kieran Tracey. It's a ghost story that has translated well to the stage and was brilliantly performed by Chris and Kieran. With only two performers, it was interesting to see how they used the performance space to convey multiple locations and even a multi room house with a few simple props, creative lighting and a fog machine.
The acting was brilliant and maintained audience interest throughout with several moments that caused some members of the audience to scream and jump followed by some nervous laughter. I enjoyed the lighting and sound with music and ear piercing screams to shock the audience alert in case they needed it. The story was engrossing and I'd never seen the play or the movie so I was interested to see how the ghost story would be performed and ensure an appropriate amount of drama and suspense. It certainly delivered for me and I really enjoyed the performance and story.
The story is about a lawyer Arthur Kipps played by Chris McLean who is sent to a remote village to sort out the affairs of a recently deceased eccentric. The townspeople aren't too keen to help Arthur as he goes out to the house which is only accessible at low tide and soon Arthur discovers the reason for their reluctance. Kieran Tracey plays an actor bringing the story to life.
The venue was very nice and with the audience sitting on tiered seating looking down to where the actors performed on the floor. There were some simple set and costume changes with the actors sitting on a large basket bouncing around as if they were on a horse drawn carriage or sitting on facing each other on a pair of wooden chairs rocking slightly to the motion of a train. Although, these techniques seemed simple they were performed well so it portrayed the feeling of motion and didn't look odd.
A thoroughly entertaining performance by Chris and Kieran with great directing, an interesting set and costumes and great lighting ensured a fun afternoon for me and the audience. I'd certainly recommend this performance and look forward to seeing more performance by the cast of this show.
‘PREMIERES’ – PIANO RECITAL BY TAMARA SMOLYAR website review by Sylvester Kroyherr
(1 September 2016) At the Robert Blackwood Hall, Monash University Flanked by an enthusiastic audience on stage, Tamara’s concert began with a preamble from composer/musician Anthony Halliday, heralding his composition ‘Introduction and Fugue for Tamara’ (world premiere).The short piece that aimed at giving self expression to the performer demonstrated immediately Tamara’s commanding technique through the spritely start and expressive fugue. Another world premiere followed with Jane Hammond’s ‘There is a Solitude’ which was based on the work of the poet Emily Dickinson. The short but moving piece was delivered with soulful artistry that was not only displayed musically but by Tamara’s beautiful hand movements. With another preamble by the composer, Anatoly Documentov’s ‘Mood, 2 Preludes’ followed – this being an Australian premiere. The piece displayed a mood of cheeky playfulness to finish with flighty intensiveness. The fourth offering was Livia Teodorescu-Ciocania’s short piece called ‘Briseis’ (Archile’s slave lover) – another world premiere written for Tamara. Although haunting and ghostly, the brutal emotional intensity was brilliantly interpreted. Prior to the interval, Kenji Fujimura delivered a preamble to his composition dedicated to Tamara called ‘Variations on a Highland Air’ (inspired by the Skye Boat Song). Tamara’s smooth and flowing style expressed a tuneful start that echoed a Liszt influence and spirited charm. Anticipating the journey to Skye, the audience took great delight at the dramatic and stately finish echoing the tunes from the Skye Boat Song. A well deserved applause closed the first half of the recital. The last major composition was another world premiere of Rachmaninov’s ‘Trio Elegiaque No.2 in D minor, Op.9’. Interestingly, the talents of Tamara and Anthony Halliday combined to produce an arrangement for piano of a larger work for piano, violin and cello in three movements. Interpreting Tamara’s favourite composer, the first movement flowed with sheer brilliance and artistic elegance while the second movement was saturated with colour and amazing expressive feeling. To conclude, the energetic allegro start evolved to fuse the trio’s intensity and power. Beyond praising the new arrangement, the ‘special project’ to create an intimate setting showcasing original compositions was a great success – aided by the excellent acoustics of the hall. To warm our hearts, Tamara treated us with an encore – an Etude by Chopin – peaceful, sensitive and soothing! A fabulous final recital in the series, ‘Wood, Metal and Vibrating Air’ by the Monash University Academy of Performing Arts.
MELBOURNE: MAKING THE AUSTRALIAN QUILT EXHIBITION 2016 AT NGV website review and photos: Kieran McNamara
We travelled to the exhibition Making The Australian Quilt: 1800 - 1950 at NGV Federation Square looking forward to seeing the variety and quality of Australian quilts. We certainly weren't disappointed with the variety and quality and in some cases, rare quilts that were on display. The exhibition contains quilts brought out to Australia by people moving to Australia to start a new life and bringing elements of the old lifestyle and sophistication with them.
We also had a quilt made by convicts on the voyage out to Australia which is a very rare and special quilt. It was made on the ship Rajah during the passage to Australia. The variety of textures, techniques and materials was very interesting. From the "waggas" quilts made from any fabric or material that could be found including fine quality flour sacks, a possum pelt quilt, fabrics such as cotton, wool, silk and even cigar wrappers meant that the quilts were all wonderful and different.
An element of the exhibition I did like was the children friendly explanations so young visitors could enjoy the exhibition as well. One of the pieces that included a children friendly explanation was a fancy dress costume worn several times that was made of panels of fabric printed with newspaper style prints. Other quilts were composed of geometric shapes such as diamonds, triangles, squares, hexagons that created some visual effects that were quite hypnotic and also highlighted the many hours of fine cutting and stitching.
I did enjoy the three dimensional exhibits such as the dressing gowns and bags along with the embroidery ranging from honour board type signatures, animals and to heart warming slogans. It is a wonderful exhibition and I recommend going along to enjoy it even if like me you aren't a quilt maker to appreciate the skills, work and talent of the people who made these quilts.
MELBOURNE: TCHAIKOVSKY ROMANCE WITH RADA TOCHALNA NAD EMMA LIPPA website review : Irina Ivanova photos: Ina Parakhina
Tchaikovsky Romance For Music Lovers’ Society
This is the 65th year since the foundation of the Music Lovers’ Society supporting talented young musicians and regularly organising classical music performances in Melbourne. Their recent concert was held at St John’s Church in Malvern East and presented the wonderful duet of two extremely professional performers: Emma Lippa – the pianist, and Rada Tochalna – soprano. The programme was dedicated to the romances by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky – a Russian composer of the 19th century, whose works are among the most popular music in the classical repertoire.
Emma started her piano performance with the excerpts from Album for the Young comprised of 24 simple, less than a minute long pieces, ideal for a beginning player. This album includes compositions close to children’s hearts, like Playing Hobby-Horses, Mama, March of the Wooden Soldiers, and The New Doll. It also has some genuinely Russian elements like Mazurka, Russian Song, The Accordion Player and Kamarinskaya. There are frivolously romantic Old French Song, rhythmic German Song, and famous Neapolitan Song. The album was created as a dedication to Tchaikovsky's favourite nephew, Volodya Davydov. Nowadays young pianists start their acquaintance with classical music through these innocent melodies.
The atmospheric sound of the church was a perfect match for the magnificent soprano of Rada Tochalna. The singer performed with great passion, selflessly immersing into the tunes of piano. Through the beautiful songs of Russian poets Tolstoy, Sollogub and Apukhtin the audience experienced a plentiful of intense emotions: the excitement of It Was in Early Spring, mystery of Tell Me what in the Shade of the Branches?, passion of Frenized Nights, and heartbreak of If Only I had Known.
After a short interval we were treated to a few more songs and excerpts from the ballet music. Having spent 28 years with Bolshoi Ballet and 20 years with Australian Ballet, Emma said she could play any part of classical ballets by heart if waken up in the middle of the night.
The culmination of the concert was Tatiana’s Letter Scene – the excerpt from the opera ‘Eugene Onegin’, beloved by Russians for its romantic devotion and emotional drama. Not only sang immaculately, but also acted out with a real talent, the song was met with a blissful delight of the audience.
The whole concert was held in the relaxed ambience of a friendly, family-like gathering. There were snacks and refreshments served in the interval and after the concert, that too added up to the welcoming atmosphere of the evening. It was a grand pleasure to indulge in these beautiful sounds of the brilliant voice and the tender piano accompaniment.
MELBOURNE: 5 POUND THEATRE LAUNCH PARTY AND FUNDRAISER website review: Irina Ivanova photos: Ina Parakhina
The 5pound Theatre Fundraiser and Launch Party
Last Friday night the 5pound Theatre held a party to launch its new location and raise funds for its future productions. The line up for the next theatre season looks very ambitious, with two plays to be performed during the Melbourne Fringe Festival opening in September 2016, and a few more to come to their spacious new spot in Fitzroy North.
The venue flourished in a friendly atmosphere, live music, yummy goodies galore and beautiful selection of organic wines and gluten-free beers. Everybody tried to get closer to the fireplace on that chilly rainy evening. There were two local bands: one – entertaining guests with some classic hits, like Where the Wild Roses Grow (love Nick Cave and Kylie Minogue!) and Feeling Good (Nina Simone), and another – performed their own music with outstanding vocals of a young songstress.
The highlight of the party was the performance of a 34 year old poet Anthony O’Sullivan who treated the audience to a few of his creations performed in a confident, passionate manner. The son of a German Jewish mother and an Irish catholic father, one of 13 (!) children, Anthony gives all his heart to writing. Even saying, “I love love, but love doesn’t love me”, – he did not leave a soul not falling for his poetic talent. We were fascinated by Ships and Birds, which is a beautiful dedication to his mother, and Learning How to Say It – about love. When asked whether he has had or going to have an acting experience, Anthony was a bit shy about it, saying that he can be certain only with his own poems, and they are easier to declare (in comparison to someone else’s play script) as these are his own thoughts and feelings that he wants to stay true to.
The 5pound theater has been operating since 2010 and produced a number of intriguing shows including the acclaimed ‘Purgatorio’ and ‘Rhinoceros’, sold out ‘Noises Off’, highly reviewed Checkov’s ‘The Bear’, delightful ‘The Blue Room’ and a few more. Jason Cavanagh, the artistic director of the theatre, and the general manager Sharon Davis presented the future shows. The first one to come during the Fringe Festival, called ‘Man of the Year’, congregates the most famous influential speeches that shaped the world history. The other play ‘Journey of a Thousand Smiles’ was presented by Jessica Hackett who had walked from Melbourne to Canberra as a protest to the Australian government rejecting refugees. On her way Jess had got into a myriad of interesting adventures and met a lot of remarkable people that inspired her to share her story.
The theatre is preparing a production of one of the goriest Shakespeare’s tragedies ‘Titus Andronicus’. It is coming up in November this year and there are still positions open for actors willing to participate. Next year the 5pound theater is planning to launch their biggest project so far – a theatrical spectacular by the famous George Orwell’s novel ‘Animal Farm’. This is going to be an expensive production demanding animalistic costumes and specific stage decorations. Therefore the theatre welcomes investors ready to help creating the magic of this grand idea.
MELBOURNE INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2016: SPECIAL AND Q&A SESSIONS: RICHA CHADHA website review by Jennifer Zaman
IFFM 2016 IN CONVERSATION WITH RICHA CHADHA BOLLYWOOD & BODY POSITIVITY 13th August, HOYTS Melbourne Central
In an hour long conversation with Bollywood’s feisty feminist actor Richa Chadda, she spoke about the changing definition of beauty through time. Regaining a new height to her popularity with her production “Masaan”, a movie breaking all stereotypes about pre-marital sex in India, she candidly speaks about female equality and empowerment.
With the aid of pictures, Richa talks about the humiliation women have been meted out through ages. Pictures from days of yore were used to depict the idea of beauty in earlier days; veteran actors Rekha, Mumtaj and Sridevi being the icons. She focused on how fuller and curvy women were considered desirable then and contrary to that, in the present days, anorexic and fragile looking bodies have become the norm. According to her, everyone should be happy and content with the way our bodies are; efforts must be made only to stay fit and healthy and not dependent. Bodies should not be treated mere as cloth hangers. The strain on being skinny is disturbing and unacceptable. However, she goes on to add that the idea of beauty is not the same for everyone. As long as a person is healthy and happy, no judgement should be passed on his/her individual choices.
The feminist does not shy away from openly speaking about eating disorders that usually come complementary with failures and that she, too, was a victim of the this phenomenon.
Richa also speaks about the position of females in the Indian film industry, female patriarchy and how women-centric movies are being made today. She mentions, with pride, the box - office success achieved by the IFFM Ambassador Vidya Balan with her women-centric movies. She also talks about the agelessness that has been established by feminist actors like Sarah Jessica Parker and Jane Fonda.
While talking about the sense of beauty in Asia, the actress calls the obsession of Indians with fair skin as “colonial hangover”, a legacy of the British.
The conversation later allowed questions from the audience which the talented actor answered with confidence and candidness.
Richa’s conversation had rich messages for both males and females trying to make it big in show-biz. However, the session lacked preparedness on the part of the actress; the slides on the presentation were disoriented and the topics randomly commenced and ended. Although the subject matter of the conversation was quite interesting, Richa had little new to offer. Also, I reckon that she needs to choose her words correctly with reference to female body parts; using ‘unrefined’ terms does not necessarily facilitate feminism.
MELBOURNE. INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2016: WESTPAC AWARDS NIGHT RED CARPET AND AWARDS CEREMONY website review: Jennifer Zaman photos: Kieran McNamara
Westpac, Australia IFFM 2016 Awards Night and Empowerment Concert 12th August, Melbourne Recital Centre
This year’s IIFM Awards Night kept up with its previous glory and was a gala event with an array of popular Bollywood celebrities walking the red carpet. The chilly Melbourne wind could not deter the fans, media and other socialites from attending it; all dressed up to their best, mostly in glittery traditional attires. Right at the entrance of the red carpet were dancers from Melbourne in Indian classical dance costumes welcoming the elite guests. The energy around the venue was intoxicating with everyone trying to catch a glimpse of his/her favourite star.
The Red Carpet was graced by several stars from the B-Town :- talented actor Nawazuddin Siddique, director Anurag Kashyap, actress and dance diva Malaika Arora, actor Radhika Apte, director Leena Yadav, veteran actor and talk show host Simi Garewal, veteran actor Rishi Kapoor with wife Neetu Kapoor, the feminist actor Richa Chadda, Pakistani actor Fawad Khan, actor and producer Rituparna Sengupta, the beautiful actor Sonam Kapoor, and India playback singers Shalmali Kholgade and Suzanne D'Mello. The list also includes popular names from Australian movie industry and social circuit.
The Awards Night commenced with an energetic Indian classical dance performed with utter grace. In the midst of a hall packed with media and bollywood-frenzy audience, late Paulus Henrique Benedictus, the Dutch-Australian filmmaker recognized as "Australia's most prolific film auteur", lovingly known as "Paul Cox”, was remember as an ode before the night took off. The opening speech was delivered by Hon Martin Foley, Minister for Creative Industry, where he talked about cultural ties between Indian and Australia.
Western Union Short Film Competition winner “Out on a Lim” was introduced by writer, actor, producer Damian Hill. The movie entails the story of a visually challenged musician Ritchell Lim and to the utter surprise of the audience she performed live right then and there. The award went to the maker of the film Joshua Walker.
Thereafter, the stage was taken over by the Indian playback singer, Suzanne D'Mello, whose power-packed voice resonated inside the Recital centre making the audience go ga-ga. The Empowerment concert included two Indian and one Pakistani Singers. With intervals for the announcement of awards, the concert went on with great pomp. Shalmali Kholgade, the other Indian singer, too, rocked the stage with her performance. Pakistani singer Sara Haider took the audience aback with her melodious jazz and desi music (Folk). The singers were true representation of female talent, resilience and empowerment. Sara Haider lifted the already euphoric mode of the event by coyly flirting with the handsome Fawad khan, the audience’s favourite. With regards to the awards, director Leena Yadav’s “Parched” was awarded the Best Indie movie. The award for the Best Film went to “Kapoor & Sons” starring Rishi Kapoor and Fawad Khan and directed by Shakun Batra. To the amazement of everyone at the event, a special video clip on Fawad Khan’s work in India and Pakistan was played followed by the star being honoured with the ‘Diversity Award’. The award for the Best Actor Category (Male) went to Mr. Nawazuddin Siddique for his impressive performance in Anurag Kashyap’s “Raman Raghav 2.0”. The award for the Best Actor Category (Female) went to the beauty with brains, Sonam Kapoor, for her unforgettable performance in “Neerja”.
This year, the “Excellence in Cinema” Award was presented to Mr. Rishi Kapoor for his splendid journey in Indian Film Industry by the female co-star of his very first movie, popularly known as the lady in white, Simi Garewal.
The awards were presented by the tinsel town’s stars along with Australian screenwriter Andrew Anastasios, Mr. Navdeep Suri (High Commission of India), director Sue Maslin (Dress-maker), Special Minister of State Hon Gavin Jennings, Scottish actor Paul Ireland, Australian actor Stefan Dennis, and representatives from Telstra, Singapore Airlines and Wetspac, the sponsors of IFFM 2016.
The spirit and excitement of Melbourne audience was applauded by the guests. The star-studded night was concluded by an extravagant performance by the three superbly talented singers Suzzane, Shalmali and Sara.
Director of Mind Blowing Films, Mitu Bhowmick Lange and her team deserves huge applaud for organising the event so efficiently and giving all a night to remember.
MELBOURNE. SHADOWLAND SHOW IN MELBOURNE website photos of the Melbourne at night life after the show: Ina Parakhina review: Irina Ivanova
Shadowland Show in Melbourne
This year the acclaimed Shadowland show returns to Australia to indulge the viewers with a cunning illusion created by uber-flexible and strong bodies intertwined to produce complex shadow play projections and a powerful front-of-screen choreography. Originally the idea appeared as a short shadow work story in 2007, and after a great success at the Academy Awards, it transformed into a full-length show, which was taken on tour all over the world. Directed by the renowned dance theater Pilobolus, the show amazes with the creativity of movements, precision of light work, and fiery music by the popular American musician, producer, and film composer David Poe. It is a top class entertainment for all ages.
I’ve been given an opportunity to take an interview with Kristina Dobosz, one of the dancers from the Shadowland, before the performance.
Kristina has been dancing since she was 4 years old, so basically she was born for it. She has joined the company and performed with Shadowland a few years ago. Lately Kristina has been mainly working on smaller productions, though this year she returned to Shadowland and toured the world with the show. It was Kristina’s first time visiting Melbourne, which, in her words, reminds her a lot of New York City, her hometown, and London.
Here is a short interview that I (Irina) ran with K (Kristina):
I: Do you know how the idea of Shadowland was born? K: The shadow work initially began for a commercial. Pilobolus was asked to create an idea to somehow turn bodies into a car, and decided to use the medium of shadow. They played around with the idea and used it for some other events. It was presented at the Academy Awards in 2007 and gained so much great feedback, that this made [Pilobolus] realize that there was actually something here. So they started creating the show, and in 2009 it came together, and it’s been touring ever since.
I: Does the show change from year to year? K: It is ever-changing, which is pretty fantastic. People who saw it in Australia in 2014, if they come back to see it this year they will notice that it has morphed a bit. Though the storyline has never changed essentially. This is a story of a girl coming of age and going through a thousand of tribulations that build up her character. We’ve added and subtracted some things, so that this would make more sense to the overall storyline.
I: What roles do you play in the show? K: I played two different roles in the show. Firstly I played the circus queen which is such an awesome character – super fierce, she leads a section of the circus. And now I play the Mom – a much softer of a role, a different theater.
I: How long does it take to put together a show? K: It usually depends on the cast and how recently we’ve performed together. It takes hours and hours of rehearsals, every day before the performance, so that we could get ourselves into a mindset of being together as a collective, to keep everything fresh and very detailed. It is similar to the precision of a ballet, where one is trying to create these crisp clean lines and images that produce such magic.
I: What do you enjoy the most in the show? K: I have to say the comradery. The show requires so much working together. You have to be mindful of who you are with, and you have to adapt and change together as a group, instantaneously if necessary. I feel that the show has forced us to become a big family on stage. And that’s the thing I appreciate the most, for sure.
I: How many performers are there in the show and how was the team built? K: There are 9 dancers on stage, plus 2 extras on the tour. They are swinging between 3 parts each. All come from different parts of the United States and one dancer is French.
I: How do you evaluate your experience in Australia? K: When I was touring full-time with Shadowland we travelled all over the place: to Asia and South America. The travelling in general can be really difficult, but the company itself is very supportive and the people here are incredible. I really had a blast! Meeting new people have been fantastic. I’m really grateful for this opportunity.
Well, and we are very grateful for the opportunity to watch and enjoy the performance. It’s been truly awesome, with a heart-warming personal touch for all the Melbournians in the end of the show.
MELBOURNE. NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC LIVE: NATURE ROARS BACK WITH FILM MAKER BOB POOLE website press release by Ivan Lubkov
Nature Roars Back The renowned, Emmy Award-winner, filmmaker Bob Poole releases his latest documentary “Nature Roars Back”. The picture presents a heart touching story of the Gorongosa natural reserve and the constant fight for survival of the human residents and the wildlife of the majestic land. The presentation of the documentary is done by the creator himself who gives a detailednarration of the events. The story is shown in an autobiographic manner where the first scenes are from the creator’s childhood where he goes through his first work experience in cattle relocation assignments and his first encounter of National Geographic crews. As the picture unfolds the viewers are presented with the events that made the person standing before them a wildlife advocate and a dedicated fighter for protection and restoration of wildlife around the world. Bob Poole’s strong belief that it is not too late to stop destroying wildlife and his faith that there are countless places that can and have to be rebuilt is reinforced with the specific example of the Gotongosa national park. The beautiful land went through a lot of turmoil in the 20th century being a hunting ground, a place of war and poaching until the current government saw the need to rebuild it and make it a place for tourists and scientists. The picture uncovers the importance of peaceful coexistence of people among each other and the impact that all the wars have on the wildlife. The filmmaker manages to present the humane side of animals and makes the viewer realise that every single life of a lion, an elephant or just about any other animal is precious and should be valued.
MELBOURNE. INDIAN FILM FESTIVAL MELBOURNE 2016 PRESS CONFERENCE WITH THE STARS website photos: Kieran McNamara journalist: Jennifer Zaman
The much-awaited ‘Opening Night’ of IFFM was preceded by a Press Conference attended by the celebrities from the Indian Film Industry. The guest list was as grand as the event itself - the Chief Guest of the festival Mr. Rishi Kapoor, the Pakistani heartthrob Mr. Fawad Khan, director of “Kapoor & Sons” Shakun Batra, the feisty actor Richa Chadda, the talented actor Radhika Apte, director of “Parched” Leena Yadav, playback singers Suzanne D'Mello and Shalmali Kholgade, and last but not the least, Minister for Creative Industries, Hon Martin Peter Foley. IFFM Festival Director Mitu Bhomwick Lange delivered the opening speech and introduced the festival guests to the media present there.
Once the floor was opened for Q&A, questions were directed to the celebrities one after another, especially to veteran actor Rishi Kapoor and to the handsome Fawad Khan. The questions entailed discussions on Bollywood, women empowerment, Indo-Pakistan cultural affiliations in terms of movies, and scope of creating music albums in India.
Rishi Kapoor answered all the questions directed to him in his jovial way impressing the gathering with his simplicity and lucidity. Fawad Khan too, was composed and answered all the questions eloquently.
The conference felt short-lived and came to a closure within a little more than 30 minutes leaving the excited media wanting for more. And before anyone could indulge the Bollywood stars into any one-one conversations or take pictures, they were whisked away by the organizers.
Kudos to the organizers of IFFM 2016 for performing an impressive job of hosting the conference and arranging it at a prestigious location. However, there is always room for improvement. It would be highly appreciated if media is treated in a more professional and civilized manner and questions received with an open-mind.
SYDNEY: HELPMANN AWARDS 2017
HELPMANN AWARDS 25 July 2016 Sydney BACKGROUND The Helpmann Award is an accolade presented by Live Performance Australia (LPA) (the trade name for the Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA)), an employers' organisation which serves as the peak body in the live entertainment and performing arts industries in Australia. It is named in honour of Sir Robert Helpmann, an Australian actor, dancer, choreographer and theatre director. Established in 2001, the award is handed out for achievements in the disciplines of musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, opera, classical music, theatre,dance and physical theatre. As of 2013, a total of forty-one competitive awards are given to individuals for their work in performance, direction, choreography, lighting, sound, music, costume and scenic design and production. Non-competitive awards are also presented, including: the JC Williamson Award, Brian Stacey Award and Best Special Event.
The Helpmann Awards were established in 2001 by the Australian Entertainment Industry Association (AEIA) (currently known by its trade name Live Performance Australia (LPA)). They are named in honour of Australian actor, choreographer, dancer and theatre director,Sir Robert Helpmann (9 April 1909 – 28 September 1986).They are given to productions regardless of the Australian state they were originally staged in. The accolade was created to be the Australian equivalent of the Tony Awards for Broadway theatre in the United States, and the Laurence Olivier Awards for West End theatre in the United Kingdom. The aim of the awards is to promote Australia's live entertainment industry, both locally and internationally, by: recognising artistic achievements; administering the awards with integrity; ensuring the awards are celebrated by the industry and Australian community; and ensuring the ceremony is the most prestigious awards in the local industry and the highlight of each season. At the inaugural Helpmann Awards, twenty six accolades were handed out for achievements in performance, direction, choreography, lighting, sound, music, costume and scenic design andproduction, in the disciplines of musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, opera, classical music, theatre, danceand physical theatre. Over the years the categories have expanded and currently include forty-one honours.Special non-competitive prizes are also bestowed upon individuals: the JC Williamson Award (named after theatre manager James Cassius Williamson), for one's life's work in Australia's live entertainment industry and the highest honour presented by Live Performance Australia; and the Brian Stacey Memorial Award (presented by the Brian Stacey Memorial Trust), for emerging Australian conductors, which also includes an $8000 reward
16TH ANNUAL HELPMANN AWARDS WINNERS ANNOUNCED
Celebrating artistic excellence and distinguished achievement in live performance
42 Awards presented plus the prestigious JC Williamson Award® and Sue Nattrass Award®
The 2016 Helpmann Awards were presented at a star-studded ceremony tonight, Monday 25 July, in front of a full house at the Sydney Lyric Theatre. Hosts for the evening were Chloe Dallimore, Helen Dallimore, Stuart Maunder AM, Guy Noble, Simon Phillips, The Umbilical Brothers and Queenie van de Zandt as “Jan van de Stool”. The celebrations continued after the ceremony as guests enjoyed an After Party at Marquee Sydney, The Star.
The high-profile line-up of Presenters included Kellie Dickerson, Tim Draxl, Marta Dusseldorp, Tim Finn, Antoinette Halloran, Noni Hazlehurst, Erika Heynatz, Celia Ireland, Tim Minchin, Hunter Page-Lochard, Katrina Milosevic, Milijana Nikolic, Eddie Perfect, Aurélien Scannella, The Hon Jillian Skinner MP and Toby Thatcher.
At the ceremony, the 2016 Helpmann Award winners were announced in the categories of comedy, cabaret, children’s presentation, contemporary music, dance and physical theatre, industry, musicals, opera and classical music, regional touring and theatre.
Awards previously announced and presented live on stage tonight included a special award given to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for Outstanding Contribution to the Development of Comedy in Australia, the JC Williamson Award® recognising outstanding contribution to the Australian live performance industry presented to Stephen Page and the Sue Nattrass Award®, presented to Michael Lynch CBE AM, which honours exceptional service to the Australian live performance industry. The Helpmann Awards were established in 2001 by Live Performance Australia (LPA). Chief Executive of LPA, Evelyn Richardson said “We are proud to present the 16th Annual HelpmannAwards tonight. The breadth of winners, nominees and performances at tonight’s ceremony shines a spotlight on Australia’s world-class creative and artistic talent.”
The Helpmann Awards are proudly supported by the New South Wales Government, through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events, Stuart Ayres said “The Helpmann Awards is the pinnacle celebration of Australia’s live performance industry and this year’s winners reflect the depth, range and expertise of this significant industry. I commend all of tonight’s winners and nominees on their achievements.”
Guests were entertained by 10 sensational performances including:
Singin’ in the Rain –“Overture” and “Good Mornin’” starring Grant Almirall, Gretel Scarlett and Jack Chambers; and “Singin’ in the Rain” full cast finale
Sarah Blasko – “Luxurious”
Sydney International Piano Competition – Andrey Gugnin, 1st Prize winner Sydney International Piano Competition, “Sergei Prokofiev Piano Sonata #7, III Precipitato B Flat Major, Op 83”
Matilda the Musical – “Quiet” starring all eight Matildas from the Sydney and Melbourne seasons
Marina Prior and Mark Vincent – “Time to Say Goodbye”
West Australian Ballet – “On The Nature of Daylight” pas de deux starring Sandy Delasalle and Matthew Lehmann
Ladies in Black – “Ladies in Black” starring Lucy Maunder, Kate Cole, Kathryn McIntyre, Deidre Rubenstein, Carita Farrer Spencer, Sarah Morrison and Naomi Price
The Sound of Music – “Do-Re-Mi” starring Amy Lehpamer, Stefanie Jones and the von Trapp children; and “Climb Ev’ry Mountain” starring Jacqueline Dark
The Helpmann Awards Ceremony was presented on the set of Singin' in the Rain at the Sydney Lyric Theatre with Jon Nicholls as Executive Producer. The ceremony was broadcast live on Foxtel Arts and is available via webcast at www.foxtelarts.com.au until August 25.
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The Helpmann awards 2016 showcased a multitude of talented artist's from across Australia.
The red carpet saw celebrities from all walks of life including actors, dancers, singers, performers and amazing individuals the list goes on.
BRC were lucky enough to have a chat to some of the stars on the red carpet. See Video.
During the awards ceremony held inside the Lyric Theatre in Sydney, there were standout performances from musical theatre stage shows including The Sound of Music, Singin in the Rain, Matilda and Ladies in Black to name a few.
The host's of the night included the stars of Foxtels tv series 'Wentworth', Tim Minchin, Noni Hazlehurst, Helen Dallimore and Marta Dusseldorp to name a few.,
The awards ceremony saw 'Matilda the Musical' take out a vast majority of awards for the night. It was wonderful to see so many talented people come together and celebrate their successes.
To end the awards there was a spectacular performance from the cast of 'Singin In the Rain' who performed on stage with water pouring down on them in doors. So wonderful to watch.
Of course there was a fabulous after party where everyone had the chance to unwind and have a chat with one another. The venue was Marquee Nightclub at The Star Sydney. A beautiful venue seemingly fitting for the occasion.
Make sure you keep supporting aussie grown talent and the performing arts. Thank you BRC for the opportunity to cover such a wonderful event. We look forward to covering more arts and entertainment events in the future. by Bryanna Reynolds