PALACE TEN SCREEN CINEMA COMPLEX FOR DOUBLE BAY

Palace Cinemas has announces that it will open a new ten-screen cinema in Sydney’s Double Bay.

The move is in line with two other redevelopments in New South Wales for Palace Verona and Palace Byron Bay.  For Verona, all existing seats will be replaced with a more luxurious chair by December 2016 and by Easter 2017, there will be a brand new auditoria, with plans to add more bringing the total to eight by December 2017. Palace Byron Bay will reopen in 2018 as a reimagined, sustainable, nine-screen complex.  Each development will create 30+ local employment opportunities for Novocastrians.

“We’re thrilled to be bringing a state-of-the-art cinema to Double Bay and doing our part to help revitalise the local arts scene in this fantastic Sydney suburb.  As is our standard, the cinemas will offer our customers the broadest choice of quality mainstream films and international film festivals in luxurious, stylish and sustainably built places”, said Benjamin Zeccola, Palace Cinemas’ CEO.

Palace’s trademark and much-loved collection of international film festivals will feature prominently at both locations, bringing with them the best of contemporary and classic cinema from Italy, Spain, France, Britain, Latin America, Germany, and Scandinavia.  The well-attended program of stage-to-screen content will also feature regularly including operas and ballets from the foremost companies of the world, including Covent Garden, La Scala, Bolshoi Ballet, Opera D’Italia and National Theatre, and concert events.

The timetable for reopening will be shared with the community as soon as plans are finalised and Palace Cinemas looks forward to offering patrons a sublime entertainment and hospitality experience at the home of quality cinema in Australia.

http://www.afr.com/real-estate/palace-cinemas-consortium-to-revive-double-bay-car-park-20160726-gqe9m0

THE CALYX @ THE BOTANICAL GARDENS

The Botanical Gardens  gave itself a birthday present on its 200th anniversary in the form of the Calyx, billed as Sydney’s newest attraction.

The Calyx replaces the pyramid hothouse with a donut shaped appearance. Furthermore it has added a exhibition space and a ‘moat’ containing an island of topiary monkeys.

Currently showing at the exhibition space is an exhibition entitled the Sweet Addictionthe Botanic Story of Chocolate– about the Chocolate Plant.

https://www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/visit/sweet-addiction

 

 

JUSTINE FORD’S BIOGRAPHY OF RON IDDLE’S ‘THE GOOD COP’

Above- Author Justine Ford and the book cover.

How good is Justine Ford’s biography of Ron Iddles, THE GOOD COP?

Very good indeed. Riveting.

Inspired as a boy by the Crawford Productions television series, Homicide, Ron Iddles’ dream was to join the police force and solve murders.

Born in Rochester in country Victoria in 1955, Iddles initially joined the police cadets, a move that did not auger well for a future uttering “take it down to forensics”, but a real dog at a bone persistence prevailed and in February 1974 Iddles graduated as a cop. Continue reading JUSTINE FORD’S BIOGRAPHY OF RON IDDLE’S ‘THE GOOD COP’

STAR TREK BEYOND

STAR TREK BEYOND is the thirteenth cinematic installment of a franchise that began way back in the mid-60s with the quirky, often hilariously kitsch TV show starring William Shatner, Leonard Ninoy et al.

Director Justin Lin of Fast and Furious fame has taken over from JJ Abrams in the directorial department and, according to a figure I saw, was given a $US150 million budget for this film.

It all starts innocently enough, with a call for assistance from an innocuous seeming alien to Kirk (Chris Pine) and his buddies to go in and rescue a ship lost in a region of dark, uncharted space. However, a surprise ambush finds the Enterprise under attack from hordes of swarming, wasp-like buzzing creatures under the control of the evil dictator Krall (Idris Elba).     Continue reading STAR TREK BEYOND

DAVID BROMLEY’S SOUTH YARRA HOME OPEN TO PUBLIC

David Bromley is a prominent Australian artist, known internationally for his Female Nude series and daring bold style – using colour and whimsical subject matter to communicate his perception of the human experience.

His South Yarra house was open to the public over last weekend, in light of the Leonard Joel auction. The unique property is situated in the heart of Chapel street, and is not only home to an eclectic mix of works but also breathes opulence through it’s architectural narrative. These are some of the photos that I took of this extraordinary property and some of its unique possessions.

 

 

DIVALICIOUS- LICENCE TO TRILL @ UTZON ROOM SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

In DIVALICIOUS –LICENCE TO TRILL, two devious divas apply James Bond tactics as they try to outwit, out sing and out trill each other.

Since they became nationally known in their DivaLicious performances on TV’s “Australia’s Got Talent” and “The Voice”, these two opera-trained sopranos, Fiona Cooper Smyth and Penny Shaw, have expanded their corporate repertoire and toured their two shows ‘Opera Rocks’ (reviewed in Sydney Arts Guide in 2015) and ‘Licence to Trill’.

Flirtatious and audacious, they flaunt their ambition and other attributes to capture variously the hearts, minds, votes and wallets of their audiences and audition judges.
Though operating as a duo, they each try to be the only diva on stage. They admit that they were and still are “divas-in-waiting” with the song, “I dreamed a dream” from Les Miserables. Continue reading DIVALICIOUS- LICENCE TO TRILL @ UTZON ROOM SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

HAROLD PINTER’S BETRAYAL @ ENSEMBLE THEATRE

Matt Zeremes and Ursula Mills in Betrayal, photo by Clare Hawley-62

Above – Matt Zeremis as Jerry and  Ursula Mills as Emma. Featured – Guy Edmonds as Robert in Harold Pinter’s classic drama, BETRAYAL.

In my opinion we view an artwork, in whatever field of the creative arts it may fall in, to take in an experience, the experience which the artist is endeavouring to communicate.

A primary roles that a reviewer has is to guide his audience as to what kind of experience, and the quality thereof, that he is likely to have when attending an event. This then gives the reader some guidance as to whether the performance/event is something that they would like to attend.

I sometimes find with the performances that I see, that the show can’t make up its mind what it wants to be. The performance is a mish-mash of styles and, and one is left in a quandary as to what its intent was.

This is definitely not the case with British playwright Harold Pinter’s relationship drama, BETRAYAL. With this play, autobiographical in nature, Pinter gives theatregoers a very raw, lean experience charting matters of the heart. Continue reading HAROLD PINTER’S BETRAYAL @ ENSEMBLE THEATRE

TWO PEAS THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS DRIFT – AN AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE- @ ATYP STUDIO 1

 

Lauren Pegus + Olivia Jubb Challito Browne + Adam Kovarik 3 Lauren Pegus + Alex Packard

The Two Peas Theatre Company has yet again come up with great independent theatre entertainment with its new production,  DRIFT by Tara Clark and Kieran Foster and directed by Clark

This was almost perfect drama with an intimate style of presentation and featured strong characterisations from the very talented cast. The dialogue, with the blend of honesty and heart, was a  gift for each of the six young actors.

DRIFT was a complex exploration of poignant life altering relationships and the woes of Generation-X relationships. Continue reading TWO PEAS THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS DRIFT – AN AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE- @ ATYP STUDIO 1

PHELAN GROOVY @ SLIDE IN AUGUST

After conjuring his inner Patrick Swayze in a national tour of Dirty Dancing,  Kurt Phelan brings his brand new cabaret, PHELAN GROOVY to Slide on 17 August – a hilarious, access all areas romp into his mind both on and off stage.

The production is part biographical, part behind-the-scenes voyeurism and all entertainment.

PHELAN GROOVY
Date: Wednesday 17 August
Time: 7pm dinner/ 8pm show
Venue: Slide, 41 Oxford Street, Darlinghurst
Cost: 3 Course Dinner & Show $89pp (groups $80), $44 show only
Bookings: slide.com.au or 8915 1899

For more about Phelan Groovy, visit http://slide.com.au/shows/kurtphelan/#1441252401694-bd7449c5-c4c5f945-d274084b-3efb
Find him on: YouTube | Facebook

FRIDAY ON MY MIND WITH GREG MCLEAN @ ACMI

ACMI- seconde
Photos (c) Izabella Staskowski.

 

How an unknown director created an Australian horror franchise and is now helping others to accomplish similar feats.

Greg McLean is the man behind Wolf Creek. He wrote, directed and produced the 2005 film that went on to world wide acclaim.

McLean spoke to James Hewison at Friday on My Mind: Melbourne, presented by ACMI and AFTRS. The hour-long event was attended by cinephiles and aspiring directors – eager to learn more about McLean’s humble beginnings.

Whilst writing Wolf Creek, McLean was broke and sleeping under a couch in the office he rented. Ironically, at the same time he wrote three other scripts – a romantic comedy, drama and what would become Rogue.

He admitted to the audience, that Wolf Creek wasn’t intentionally a horror film.

“I was not trying to make a horror movie but I accidentally made a good horror movie because I was trying to be truthful”

McLean wanted to create a Hitchcock style thriller with an Australian horror icon, “so good that Geoffrey Rush would play the mad man”.

The result is Mick Taylor, played by John Jarrett, who McLean describes as “Slim Dusty meets Mick Dundee”.

From both a narrative and cinematic perspective, there is clear reference to McLean’s country Victoria upbringing in his work. He says it’s this unexpected rawness that initially fascinated overseas viewers.

His “dirty little horror film” found great success in Sundance and Cannes before it was shown on Australian shores.

He says Australia wasn’t ready for the film, and needed it to be accepted overseas first.

Almost 10 years on, Wolf Creek has become a franchise – with a sequel and new 6 part series on Stan.

The series aims to flip the horror genre on its head, with a female hero chasing Mick Taylor across the outback.

McLean says he knew the protagonist had to be female, not only “because you can’t do the same trick twice”, but also to give power to female heroines in an otherwise clichéd genre.

This humble yet seasoned director understands what it’s like for young people aspiring to make their mark in the arts.

“I get frustrated for other people sometimes… I try and help”

This has lead him to executively produce emerging director Abe Forsythe’s new film Down Under, which is set to centrepiece the Melbourne Film Festival.

The film satirically tackles racism in the Cronulla riots.

Currently, McLean is directing Jungle starring Daniel Radcliffe. The film is in its final stages of production and will be released in 2017.

FRIDAY ON MY MIND runs from early March to the end of October each year. The free talks are held at AFTRS in Sydney and ACMI in Melbourne.

 

ECLECTIC PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS RUMOURS OF POLAR BEARS @ BLACK BOX THEATRE NEWCASTLE

Eclectic- seconde

Production photography by Waygood Photography.

Religion and beliefs. Some of the most magnificent buildings are monuments of worship and some of the most epic wars have been over differing belief systems.

Every culture has or had their mythology/religion, a belief system that is integral to the explanation of the world and their own existence in it.

In RUMOURS OF POLAR BEARS, presented by Eclectic Productions at the Black Box Theatre, Ancient Roman, Greek, Christian, Hindu and Inuit deities and beings are given representation in this post apocalyptic dystopian work written specifically for young people by American playwright Jonathan Dorf.

It’s not necessary to know about these various deities and beings to appreciate the production but it does add an extra level and nuance of understanding of the intentions and themes behind the work.

The Black Box Theatre at the Community Arts Centre in Newcastle West has been transformed into something that is a cross between someone’s country shed and Mad Max. Atmospheric smoke and lighting creates a haze through which we peer at an old car, 44-gallon drums containing fake fire and graffiti covered corrugated iron walls. It’s a good look.

Set in America, there have been oil and water wars in the recent past, destroying the natural environment and civilization and a rag tag bunch of surviving children, now teenagers, eke out a substandard existence with canned produce as currency. They have a Friday night party pool ritual whereby a small amount of precious water is poured into an old tyre and they dance.

It’s suitably dystopian and establishes the human need to party and hold some type of ceremony. Or ritual.

The biblical Matthew, Luke, John and Peter all left or died and the predominantly female group, led by Deme (Samantha Lambert) have settled into their life. However, Deme is fixated on the notion of polar bears and going north to find them so when a sickness arrives Deme convinces her brother Romulus (Conagh Punch) to roundup the crew that includes Adam and Eve to commence their epic journey.

Along the way they lose some and acquire or meet others. In a dying paradise they encounter Cassie (Jasmine Travers) who has visions and sees somewhere else that’s green so she joins them and forms an attachment with Romulus while the foundling Scrubs (Parisse Lattimore) buzzes about them all with irrepressible survival determination.

Adam and Eve (Jack Twelvetree and Genevieve Lawson) and others drop off after encountering a place with a party spa and the whole journey becomes an extended metaphor for the existential nature of human existence complete with pointed references to a copy of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot that is missing the last three pages and the classic phrase, “Nothing to be done” from that play.

Simple things acquire enormous significance – a watch, a picture of The World’s Greatest Ball of Yarn, a colouring in book, memories of parents and the beauty of a world lost. This is best encapsulated in the scene when they encounter Noah (Alastair Anderberg).

The end of life as he knew it came for Noah when he was 7 years old and playing Mozart for his parents on his piano. The holocaust came and the wall caved in, killing his parents and beloved music teacher and destroying Middle C on the piano.

He became the pseudo guardian of a group of school children who had been surviving on the stale pretzels from a vending machine and for a while there were apples and deer until the trees died and the deer disappeared. Another Paradise Lost.

Now, he and the children perform The Pageant, whereby all the children play animal characters and the world before the Fire in the Sky and marauding motorcycle gangs.

By the time we encounter a female PAN (Beth Traynor) and the duplicitous Kali (Joanna Gorton) it is very clear that this play is deliberately and systematically trawling through cultures, myths, legends to illustrate the theme. We are fatally flawed in being paradoxically doomed to fight and fear others, yet still be mortally united.

But, as the Beckett references highlight, there is still hope and love and joy in living and a co-dependent need for human company, warmth and rules or rituals to give shape to our lives.

Directors Chloe McLean and Joel Mews have extracted some strong performances from their ensemble. Samantha Lambert and Conagh Punch as Deme and Romulus both inhabit the space confidently and keep the pace moving and Joanna Gorton as the Lara Croft style anti-hero Kali oozed action panache.

The most delightful acting surprises though were two young members, Parisse Lattimore as Scrubs and Jack Andrew in the double roles of Echo and Ugalik. These two brought exuberance to their scenes and interaction with the rest of the ensemble.

The technical and design team, presumably led by the experienced and incredibly reliable Lyndon Buckley created a highly functional and detailed multi purpose space and atmosphere that allowed for a seamless epic journey from post apocalyptic New San Francisco to Canada. Look for the references in the graffiti on the corrugated iron.

RUMOURS OF POLAR BEARS is a very suitable script for Eclectic Productions. This company emerged out a desire by several young adult graduates of youth theatre groups to continue to work together and create theatre and their niche is theatre pertinent to their age group and they are doing that with skill, flair and integrity

The final performances of RUMOURS OF POLAR BEARS are today at 2 pm and 7 pm.

LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS @ ROS PACKER THEATRE

Audrey-II-Esther-Hannaford and Brent-Hill. Production photography by Jeff Busby.
Audrey-II-Esther-Hannaford and Brent-Hill. Production photography by Jeff Busby.

Seymour Krelborn (Brent Hill) has come from bleak beginnings. He is often reminded of this by Mr. Mushnik (Tyler Coppin), who rescued Seymour from an orphanage to work at his run down florist on skid row. Seymour holds a flame for Mushnik’s quirky and warm hearted employee, Audrey (Esther Hannaford), but, she has resigned herself to sadistic dentist, Orin Scrivello, DDS, (Scott Johnson).

The shop is in disarray. Drenched in monochrome, it is decorated with garbage bins, a bum and three feisty chorus girls (Josie Lane, Chloe Zuel, Angelique Cassimatis). The girls open the show and proceed to break into a few numbers stylishly achieved by choreographer Andrew Hallsworth and musical director Andrew Worboys.

Seymour attempts to increase clientele by showing off a quirky plant he discovered, nicknamed Audrey II. After weeks of failed attempts to grow the plant, Seymour stumbles across the key as he pricks his finger and realises his plant has a fresh appetite for human blood. Continue reading LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS @ ROS PACKER THEATRE

FRIDA KAHLO AND DIEGO RIVERA EXHIBITION @ ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES

Kahlo-main

FRIDA KAHLO AND DIEGO RIVERA, presented by the Art Gallery of New South Wales, is a story of love.

The 33 artworks presented in the exhibition open a door to the enigmatic relationship between the two artists.

Sourced from the private collection of Jacques and Natasha Gelman, the exhibition follows the linear development of Kahlo and Rivera as activists, lovers and creatives.

Rivera, who is said to have influenced Picasso, was already an established muralist when Kahlo met him. She became his student and further his wife in 1929, ensuing a famously volatile marriage that is present especially in her work.

The linear nature of the exhibition allows viewers to see how both artist’s individual style developed over time.

Viewers see Rivera’s earlier cubist pieces progress to the more unique, thick,colourful aesthetic he is known for in his large-scale canvas paintings.

It is also exposed that Kahlo’s surrealistic portraits have their roots in earlier work, exemplified by the pencil sketches she created whilst Rivera worked on commissioned murals.

Kahlo and Rivera’s works are hung side by side at eye level on white walls, with standouts pieces – such as Self Portrait with Monkeys 1943 – showcased on walls of bold colour.

The exhibition is broken up with over 50 photo-journalistic prints and comprehensive time-lines detailing Kahlo and Rivera’s lives with political and social reference.

The prints are especially captivating as they welcome viewers into private moments of both passion and sorrow.

Towards the end of the exhibition is a series of multi media pieces and draft like sketches, which reveal creative processes the artist’s have taken to reach their finished works.

Concluding the exhibition is a room containing three projected screens. Viewers are welcomed to sit down and take in the silence of the projections – rolling both black and white and colour footage.

The exhibition takes a full hour to go through, but is a beautiful celebration of the life and love of the “elephant and the dove”.

FRIDA KAHLO AND DIEGO RIVERA will be showing at the Art Gallery of New South Wales from 25 June – 9 October 2016. Tickets can be bought online or at the gallery itself.

http://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/exhibitions/frida-kahlo-and-diego-rivera/

IRA GLASS THREE ACTS, TWO DANCERS, ONE RADIO HOST @ SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

GlassThis glorious enchanting show combines two things not usually considered as being able to be blended together – dance and radio shows.

Ira Glass is the host and creator of the public radio program This American Life. Under Glass’s editorial direction, This American Life has won the highest honours for broadcasting and journalistic excellence, including five Peabody awards.

Glass’s show is heard each week by over 2.2 million listeners on more than 500 public radio stations in the United States, Australia and Canada, with another 2.2 million downloading each podcast. A television adaptation of This American Life ran on Showtime for two seasons in 2007 and 2008, winning three Emmys. Glass is one of the producers of Mike Birbiglia’s new film Don’t Think Twice,  and produced and co-wrote Birbiglia’s first film Sleepwalk with Me. Continue reading IRA GLASS THREE ACTS, TWO DANCERS, ONE RADIO HOST @ SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

LUCY CALDWELL’S ‘LEAVES’ @ KINGS CROSS THEATRE

LEAVES is a play by Irish writer, Lucy Caldwell, written in 2007, and it was her debut play, written as part of a residency at the National Theatre Studio .This quietly intense ,melancholy and compelling play grabs us and forces us to listen. With its Irish gift of the blarney it is at times lyrically moving at others quite emotionally tense.

In Caldwell’s play a family is preparing for the return of their eldest daughter, Lori (Harriet Gordon-Anderson), from a recovery clinic after an attempted suicide.  Her parents, David (Simon Lyndon), and Phyllis (Amanda Stephens-Lee) are still trying to get their heads around about what happened. Her two younger siblings, Clover (Bobbie-Jean Henning) and Poppy (Poppy Lynch) each respond to the situation differently and are struggling to find their way in  which they will respond  when she does arrive. Continue reading LUCY CALDWELL’S ‘LEAVES’ @ KINGS CROSS THEATRE

DAVID HARE’S ‘SKYLIGHT’ @ SOUTHBANK THEATRE

MTC SKYLIGHT photo Jeff Busby_1395 (1)
Production photography by Jeff Busby.

SKYLIGHT  is an argument. It’s the aftermath of what lies beyond.

Kyra (Anna Samson) faces her past as it barges through her dingy council flat door.

She is the ghost of an affair that destabilized Tom (Colin Friels) and his late wife Alice, who were once Kyra’s employers and in a way, family.

It is difficult to say whether the contemporary classic is a love story or a battle of juxtapositions. Tom is Kyra’s direct antithesis –a representation of business and age where-as she is the cold youth and the public. His son, Edward, (Toby Wallace) who both opens and closes the performance, can be seen as potential. He can follow the path of his wealthy father, or estrange himself from privilege, and like Kyra, face the reality of the world.
Continue reading DAVID HARE’S ‘SKYLIGHT’ @ SOUTHBANK THEATRE

SEA OF RED AT THE ART GALLERY

 

Senior Labor figure Anthony Albanese.
Senior Labor figure Anthony Albanese. Image (c) Ben Apfelbaum.

The Archibald Prize announcement was topped and tailed in a sea of red.

In the morning  red caped protesters, hoping to catch the Archibald media pack, demonstrated against the merging of the Sydney College of The Arts and Sydney University Fine Arts Department.SCA

Senior Federal Labor figure Anthony Albanese showed up to lend his support.

In the afternoon the red carpet was laid out for the Trustees, Art Gallery members and guests who were to attend an Archibald Gala in the evening.

LEAH BULLEN WINS TRUSTEES’ WATERCOLOUR PRIZE 2016

Featured image- Leah Bullen standing in front of her prize winning entry. Pic (c) Ben Apfelbaum.

This year’s Trustees Watercolour Prize went to Leah Bullen for her work Conservatory no 2.

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http://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/prizes/wynne/2016/29802/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=PR%20Archibald%20Announcement%20-%20winner&utm_content=PR%20Archibald%20Announcement%20-%20winner+CID_ebb076dbb8ed06112e63db876ecf9007&utm_source=Email%20marketing%20software&utm_term=Leah%20Bullen%20Conservatory%20no%202

ESTHER STEWART WINS THE 2016 SULMAN PRIZE WITH ABSTRACT PAINTING

Esther Stewart in her studio in Daylesford. Photo- Penny Stephens
Above Esther Stewart working in her studio in Daylesford. Photo- Penny Stephens. Featured image – An admirer views Esther’s award winning entry.Photo copyright Ben Apfelbaum

Esther Stewart won the 2016 Sulman Prize for her painting Flatland Dreaming. Taking its title from an Edwin Abbott’s 19th-century novel that drew comparison between dimensional geometry and Victorian social mores, the painting considers domestic spaces through the dimensions of abstraction and minimalism.

“Winning the Sir John Sulman Prize is an incredible honour and I am extremely delighted,” said Stewart.

INDIGENOUS FAMILY CANVAS WINS THE 2016 WYNNE PRIZE

Featured image- Ken family sisters in front of their award winning entry.

Wynne(2)
The Ken sisters at the podium. Looking on is Mark Nelson, the deputy Trustee of the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Five sisters from the Ken family – Tjungkara Ken, Yaritji Young, Freda Brady, Maringka Tunkin and Sandra Ken – who live in the remote Aboriginal community of Amata in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands, won the 2016 Wynne Prize with their collaborative canvas entitled SEVEN SISTERS.

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“We are very proud to see our painting here in Sydney and to win the Wynne Prize. I am happy to be here with my sisters and for my family in Amata to see our painting win this big award,” Tjungkara Ken said upon winning this prestigious award.

 

LOW LEVEL PANIC @ THE OLD FITZ

Kate Skinner, Amy Ingram & Geraldine Hakewill in LOW LEVEL PANIC (c) Julia Robertson

Production photography by Julia Robertson.

The kitchen sink drama takes an abluted detour  to the bathroom in Clare McIntyre’s LOW LEVEL PANIC.

Splish, splash, Jo is taking a bath, having a soak and a stroke when she is rudely interrupted by one of her flatmates, Mary.

Jo is pretty unabashed by the intrusion but Mary is apologetic and then mildly apoplectic when she discovers Jo has been perusing a porno mag. The “stick book” is a catalyst for a robust dialogue about sexuality, sexualisation, and body image.

Jo is looking forward to a night out on the tear, hoping to engage with somebody, anybody, anything is better than being alone. Mary is less looking forward to accompanying Jo, as a recent sexual assault has made her reticent and reclusive.

A third flatmate, Celia, enters, a product of the Princess Pamper economy, loaded with product and full of beauty care advice.

The bathroom is the perfect place to set a play about coming clean, literally and metaphorically, and the set by Jonathan Hindmarsh is a beauty, enhanced by Emma Lockhart-Wilson’s lighting.

Amy Ingram as Jo, packs on a big personality, a bravura that belies a bereft emotional fulfilment.

Kate Skinner as Mary nails the fragility, often on the brink of brittle, of a woman who has been traumatised by sexual abuse and rightly suspicious of men.

Geraldine Hakewill as Celia, is a vision of vacuous, vulnerable vanity, living in a bubble of cosmetics, flighty and flirty, flattering to males, fantasising her life as a glamorous Hollywood movie.

Director Justin Martin embroiders the piece by taking a three hander and peopling it with a male chorus who personify “the male gaze” and double both as benign dressers, stage hands, musicians, as well as the more malignant male manifestation of sexual predators. He has added songs and choreography to playful and poignant effect and also pitched up the provocative with teasingly voyeuristic staging while challenging the prurient use of contemporary technology.

With a trio of terrific performances, this production of LOW LEVEL PANIC is a high level theatrical treatment of three women’s complex relationships with their own sexual fantasies, their bodies and each other.

http://www.oldfitztheatre.com/bright-those-claws/

ARCHIBALD PRIZE 2016 WINNER : LOUISE HEARMAN

Louise Hearman views her Archibald Prize winning entry.
Louise Hearman views her Archibald Prize winning entry simply titled Barry. Image (c) Ben Apfelbaum.

Melbourne artist Louise Hearman has won the 2016 Archibald Prize with her electic portrait of iconic Australian Barry Humphries.

Painting entertainer, satirist, artist and Dadaist, Barry Humphries, this is the first time Hearman has been a finalist in the country’s most famous prize.

Best known for his alter-ego Dame Edna Everage, among other comic characters including Sir Les Patterson and Sandy Stone, Barry Humphries is a perennial favourite sitter for the Archibald Prize, this being his sixth time. His first appearance in the Archibald Prize was in 1969 as Dame Edna Everage. Continue reading ARCHIBALD PRIZE 2016 WINNER : LOUISE HEARMAN

CRISTINA IN THE CUPBOARD BY PAUL GILCHRIST @ DEPOT THEATRE MARRICKVILLE

Cristina in the Cupboard - photography by Katy Green Loughrey

A spellbinding experiment in comic magic realism by critically acclaimed Australian writer Paul Gilchrist, CRISTINA IN THE CUPBOARD comes to The Depot Theatre in Marrickville for a three week season in July. This story of an unusual retreat, and a remarkable victory plays 8pm Wed to Sat and 5pm Sun, 13 – 30 July 2016. Playful and provocative, CRISTINA IN THE CUPBOARD tells of one woman’s quest to live life entirely on her own terms.

Everyone needs time out. Not everyone does it like this. Cristina is a contemporary woman. Intelligent. Capable. But she’s not satisfied with what’s on offer. Life seems too small. So she takes the extraordinary step of withdrawing from society. Join Cristina on a breathtaking inner journey as she meets a host of fantastic, hyperbolic characters, navigates illusion, weathers dismay, and discovers wonder.

Paul Gilchrist is a Sydney-based writer and director. His work has been produced locally, interstate and overseas. He is the co-founder of subtlenuance, a company dedicated solely to the production of original Australian work. Originally produced by subtlenuance in 2013, this production is directed by Julie Baz (co-artistic director of The Depot Theatre) and designed by David Jeffrey (also co-artistic director), with assistant director, Lillian Silk and sound designer Thomas Moore. It features a terrific line up of some of Sydney’s indie theatre talent: Nyssa Hamilton, Teale Howie, David Jeffrey, Emily McGowan, Tasha O’Brien, Sarah Plummer, Lucy Quill and Rachael Williams.

The Depot Theatre is a not-for-profit theatre situated within and supported by the historic Addison Road Centre, a thriving inner west hub for culture, arts and the environment visited by over 200,000 people annually. The Depot Theatre challenges and entertains its audiences with theatre that is accessible, affordable and – most importantly – a really fun night out. Coming up next after CRISTINA IN THE CUPBOARD in their 2016 Season is the new Australian play, A NEST OF SKUNKS by James Balian & Roger Vickery and presented by Collaborations Theatre Group, followed by BIJOU – A CABARET OF SECRETS and Seduction, written and performed by Chrissie Shaw, presented by Small Shows Productions.

“The Depot Theatre punches well above its weight, presenting well-produced, confidently performed shows that both entertain and inspire.” WEEKEND NOTES

DATES
13-30 July – 8pm Wed-Sat, 5pm Sun

For more about Cristina in the Cupboard by Paul Gilchrist, visit http://thedepottheatre.com/cristina-in-the-cupboard
Find us on: YouTube | Facebook

Giveaway offer – The Depot Theatre is giving away two double passes to the 8pm Thurs 21 July performance of CRISTINA IN THE CUPBOARD. Email: –SAG CRISTINA to info@thedepottheatre.com to win.

PORTRAIT OF MASTER CHEF WINS PACKING ROOM PRIZE

 

Packing Room Prize (22)
George Calombaris
Packing Room Prize (35)
Bettina Fauvel-Ogden
Packing Room Prize (93)
The Packer Prize winning portrait of George Calombaris.
Packing Room Prize - George Calombaris, Steve Peters, Betina Fauvel-Ogden
Left to right – George Calombaris, Steve Peters and Betina Fauvel-Ogden

Featured image- George Calombaris and Bettina Fauvel-Ogden. All images (c) Ben Apfelbaum.

A huge media contingent turned up at the Art Gallery of New South Wales for the unveiling of the Packing Room prize valued at $1,500. It has become an Archibald Prize institution soon it was first awarded in 1988.

The Award  is judged by the Gallery’s unpacking staff who are the first to see the entrants, with 51% of the vote going to Steve Peters, the Head of the Packing room.

Peters stated that for this Prize there were three criteria as far as he was concerned. Firstly, the painting had to realistically look like the person portrayed, then the subject had to be in the public eye, and finally the painting had to be good. Continue reading PORTRAIT OF MASTER CHEF WINS PACKING ROOM PRIZE

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