THE MARAIS PROJECT 2016 CONCERT 1 : MASTER AND PUPIL @ INDEPENDENT THEATRE

 

Ericksson

The tension between master and student is a complex and fascinating one as the upcoming generation learns from, and sometimes pits themselves against, the established leaders of their field.

The famous French novel and film Tous les matins de monde (All the mornings of the world) which starred the legendary actor Gérard Depardieu and featured virtuoso viola da gambist Jordi Savall on the sound track, is an acutely sensitive, fictional exploration of the relationship between two great artists: Marin Marais, after whom The Marais Project is named, and his distinguished mentor, Monsieur de Sainte-Colombe.  The latter was a composer, teacher and innovator without peer, while the former became known as perhaps the greatest viola da gambist of all time.  Adding spice to the mix was a “love triangle” between Sainte-Colombe’s two musician daughters and the ambitious Marais.  
Continue reading THE MARAIS PROJECT 2016 CONCERT 1 : MASTER AND PUPIL @ INDEPENDENT THEATRE

AFTERNOON TEA WITH THE TINALLEY STRING QUARTET @ PRIMUS HOTEL SYDNEY

Primus Hotel Sydney Lobby

 

Transport yourself to a world of 1930s glamour and indulge in an afternoon of High Tea at Primus Hotel Sydney accompanied by an exclusive free performance from the Tinalley String Quartet.

Experience the soaring sounds of the internationally acclaimed Tinalley String Quartet, one of Australia’s finest and most awarded classical music exports, in the hotel’s sweeping lobby space. Plus, you can be one of the first to experience Executive Chef Ryan Hong’s unique High Tea menus including The G’N Tea – Gentleman’s High Tea, The Wilmot High Tea or Zen High Tea.

Further information on the High Tea menu is available at www.primushotelsydney.com

DATES
1/5/16 and 14/5/16

For more about Afternoon Tea with the Tinalley String Quartet, visit http://www.primushotelsydney.com/offers
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A MONTH OF SUNDAYS

La Paglia2In the past month of Sundays, audiences have been treated to a couple of terrific local films. Now a third joins the ranks, A MONTH OF SUNDAYS, starring Anthony LaPaglia and John Clarke, and written and directed by Matthew Saville.

There’s no dearth of diversity nor harking back to brilliant gumtrees in these films, Broke shot in Gladstone, Queensland, Pawno in Footscray, Victoria, and now A MONTH OF SUNDAYS showing the photogenic-osity of Adelaide.

Death, divorce and real estate are cited as the three great stressors of the modern age.

All three are visited on Frank Mollard, an addled Adelaide real estate agent coping with the loss of his mother and the collapse of his marriage.

Mum dies, wife achieves acting fame, son goes with mum and follows in her professional footsteps, and Philip is caught in a mood of lethargy.

Luckily Frank has Philip Lang, a very understanding boss, sympathetic and superlatively supportive.

Then one night, Frank gets a phone call from his mum. Don’t worry, the picture doesn’t descend into woo woo ouija territory. It’s a wrong number but it cuts through and makes a connection in Frank’s no dial tone existence. Frank decides to redial and by connecting to Julia Blake’s Sarah, reconnects with the rest of his life.

Deliciously deadpan and lusciously laconic, La Paglia as Frank and John Clarke as Philip Lang play off each other with adroit drollery.

There is a spectacularly staged sprinkler scene, the calibration of which is comedy choreography at its finest. Laconic laughs re-tickled by reticulated water

The gorgeous Justine Clarke as Frank’s ex, Wendy, plays almost a parody of herself, an actress who becomes a soap superstar in a medical series called Major Surgery, a show that has in joke echoes of the ill fated The Surgeon that starred Clarke and was directed by Matthew Saville.

Kudos too for Gary Sweet for being such a good sport in playing himself as Wendy’s co-star in the soap. On yer, Gaz!!

Nice support too by Kylie Trounson as kindly Dr Kylie Elliot and Donal Forde as Damien, the recalcitrant and suspicious son of Sarah, whose neglectful filial duty is the catalyst of the narrative.

Julia Blakes’ Sarah grows from catalyst to conduit of changing Frank’s flatlining life in the most surprising ways.

Realtors round the country rejoice. A MONTH OF SUNDAYS shows there are property professionals who are not unctuous with the clammy calumny of commissions – some are genuine conduits for home making, not just bricks and mortar mortgage brokers.

Compare and contrast the dark side of the business in the recent American release, 99 Homes.

Matthew Saville cements the film with a fine sentiment but not to the point of sentimentality. MONTH OF SUNDAYS is the REAL estate of local film making – edifying edifice with rooms full of charm, wit and great views.

http://www.amonthofsundaysfilm.com.au/

WAR – A PLAYGROUND PERSPECTIVE @ NEWINGTON ARMORY SYDNEY OLYMPIC PARK

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MarkBooth-artwork-image_300dpi

WAR – A Playground Perspective is a FREE exhibition to be displayed for the first time at Newington Armory at Sydney Olympic Park from 10am-4pm between Saturday 14 May-Sunday 14 August 2016 – weekends only.

The exhibition will provide the opportunity for some of Australia’s leading contemporary artists and audiences to seriously examine an aspect of human nature that is deeply embedded in our communal psyche – territorialism. Continue reading WAR – A PLAYGROUND PERSPECTIVE @ NEWINGTON ARMORY SYDNEY OLYMPIC PARK

LEONARDO THE GENIUS IN MILAN

Da Vinci- secondRegarded as a giant of the late Renaissance, a quintessential Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci was an anatomist, scientist and astronomer, an engineer, a painter, sculptor, botanist, architect, and much more besides: he surpassed the spirit of his time, and is recognized as a polymath of Genius .

At the end of the Fifteenth Century Leonardo da Vinci lived for eighteen years in Milan at the court of Ludovico Sforza, known as ‘Il Moro’. It was a long, important period in his life, one that left a lasting impression on the city. Continue reading LEONARDO THE GENIUS IN MILAN

ART OF MUSIC @ THE ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES

Legendary Aria award winning singer Jenny Morris.
Legendary Aria award winning singer Jenny Morris.

Presented by Jenny Morris, ART OF MUSIC is a gala event combining both visual arts and music. Held at the Art Gallery of New South Wales every two years, a group of prominent contemporary visual artists come together to create a music inspired exhibition with each artist choosing an iconic song to use as the inspiration for an original artwork.

Continue reading ART OF MUSIC @ THE ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES

OPERANTICS PRESENTS MANSFIELD PARK @ THE INDEPENDENT THEATRE NORTH SYDNEY

Mansfield Park - John Kilkeary DSC_8614LR (1)

Production photography by John Kilkeary

It was with much interest that I went to see the Australian premiere  production of MANSFIELD PARK, a chamber opera adaptation of Jane Austen’s timeless novel. I am happy to report that it was wonderful! A really fun night!

The adaptation by Jonathon Dove with libretto by Alasdair Middleton sticks closely to the original story by Jane Austen, but suppresses some side plots with Tom the older brother etc. The only issue I had with the selected parts was that one of the love interests (Mr Yates) is mentioned but never seen, even though he plays a key part at the end. However, this did not detract from my enjoyment of the performance. Continue reading OPERANTICS PRESENTS MANSFIELD PARK @ THE INDEPENDENT THEATRE NORTH SYDNEY

SWALLOW @ THE LENNOX THEATRE, RIVERSIDE THEATRES, PARRAMATTA

 

Swallow 1_Photo credit Amanda James (1)

Production photography by Amanda James.

Dark, challenging and disturbing this premiere production by the new National Theatre of Parramatta is superb, and opens the Company’s  first season magnificently.

Scottish Stef Smith’s nightmarish yet sometime driftingly dreamlike play is given a riveting performance by the terrific cast of three.

The script is witty, poignant, haunting and replete with a  jagged lyricism.

Each of the three characters- Anna, Rebecca and Sam- at times act as narrator and commentator;  their individual voices sometimes overlapping  to create an intense, powerful and hypnotic performance. We learn of their stories of abuse, phobias and ‘otherness’. The play is a lot to do with self analysis and reflection.

The set, when we enter, is clean, cold, white and more than a touch disturbing.

Verity Hampson’s striking lighting design, and the use of projections, including text messages and images of startled birds, is very effective, as is the eerie use of shadows at certain points in the performance.

Max Lyandvert’s score rumbles, throbs and pulsates where appropriate. At other times there is a ‘you could hear a pin drop’ kind of silence.

Kate Champion brilliantly directs and choreographs the production.

Valerie Berry gives a magnificent performance as the uptight, repressed Sam who hides a big secret – she feels like she is a man trapped in a woman’s body and struggles for self acceptance.

We see the gradual, rocky development development of her relationship with Rebecca.

The horrific ‘gay bashing ‘ of Sam was brilliantly handled, in a quite stylized way, and featured a powerful use of torches.

Megan Drury plays Rebecca, Anna’s neighbour, who works as a well dresses paralegal in an ochre coloured skirt and dark coloured top, tights and boots.

Rebecca drinks way too much because she has been dumped by her husband for someone else and seems to be spiraling into a vicious circle of self harm. She is completely thrown when Sam reveals her big secret but is eventually, tentatively won back.

Luisa Hastings Edge gives a compelling performance as Rebecca’s damaged and hallucinating neighbour, Ana. Two years ago some mysterious event happened when Anna missed the bus for work and she has not been outside her flat since.

An agoraphobic misanthrope, on a starvation diet , Anna ends up almost destroying her apartment – parts have already been smashed , the floorboards are probably next … Anna also has an odd affinity for birds – hence the play’s title…

Anna also unearths a huge, spiraling mass of wonderfully textured cloth – some of her collages of feathers and basil pesto?  Dust from her destruction of the apartment? The uneasy coils of her mind ? Anna, at another point, cocoons herself in dirty bedding.

The work develop from a bruising darkness to what is hopefully a gentler place of recognition and understanding. Themes of heartbreak, hope and identity are poetically explored.

The trio’s shared states of defiance and vulnerability interweave their fates and influence each other’s ability to re-enter the outside world.

All three are trapped behind the just visible  lines of the wires suspended across the stage.  Everything catapults towards a soaring, tragically hopeful ending where everything is resolved – or is it?!

Performance time 90 minutes without interval.

SWALLOW is playing at the Lennox Theatre, Riverside Theatres, Parramatta until Saturday  April 30.

https://riversideparramatta.com.au/show/swallow/

 

FLAMENKISIMO PRESENTS ENTRELAZAR (INTERTWINED) @ THE FOUNDRY 616 ULTIMO

Flamenco-second

When we talk about Flamenco, we talk about a rare and vibrant fusion of art, dance, voice and musical accompaniment.

Last night I went to the Foundry in Ultimo to see the group Flamenkisimo perform their new show,  Entrelazar (Intertwined).  Dancers dressed in keeping with the Andalusian tradition appeared from the wings, comprising two gentlemen dressed in black, and three beautiful women wearing elaborate dresses featuring embroidered straps and wearing bright flowers in their hair.

The show was divided into two parts, the first consisting of four songs. Felipe Kunze playing guitar and Byron Mark on percussion made for a great duo.  

The impressive voice of Zoe Velez was captured in the song Fandangos Naturales, demonstrating her passion and flair for flamenco.

In this first part and before going to the break, the piece Alegria de Cadiz was danced by Chachy Penalver, her movements were super-coordinated with the melody, the expression of her hands, a unique facial expression, every beat was pure and vibrant energy, the audience cheered on her every moment.

After interval, the group performed four further songs. My highlight was Roshanne Wijeyeratne’s rendition of the song, Sevillanas, and her vibrant performance of the dance, Solea por Bulerias.

with the hands, feet and hips in perfect unison to the flamenco rhythm.

I recommend this show to anyone who wants to experience the joy of flamenco. You will be delighted by this talented group.

Artists

Baile               Chachy Penalver y Roshanne Wijeyerante

Cante             Zoe Velez

Guitarra          Felipe Kunze Garcia

Percussion     Byron Mark

HUMAN ANIMAL EXCHANGE PRESENTS THEY SAW A THYLACINE @ JOAN SUTHERLAND PERFORMING ARTS CENTRE

Justine Cambell as the Alison.
Justine Cambell as the Alison.

Despair and disbelief. Can’t even recognise a female of the species, those dolt trappers! Worth more dead as a bounty catch than zooed anyway. She was called Benjamin. She died because the man entrusted with her couldn’t be bothered to unlock her den. No shelter from the freezing night after a blazing day. This is the basis for Human Animal Exchange’s production of THEY SAW A THYLACINE where, down the ages, two long dead women plead the cause of a long dead animal species. Continue reading HUMAN ANIMAL EXCHANGE PRESENTS THEY SAW A THYLACINE @ JOAN SUTHERLAND PERFORMING ARTS CENTRE

MOSMAN MUSICAL SOCIETY TO PRESENT ANNIE- THE MUSICAL @ THE ZENITH, CHATSWOOD

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In the depths of the 1930’s, Annie is a fiery young girl who must live in a miserable orphanage run by the tyrannical Miss Hannigan. Her seemingly hopeless situation changes dramatically when she is selected to spend a short time at the residence of the wealthy munitions industrialist, Oliver Warbucks.

Quickly, Annie charms the hearts of the household staff, and even the seemingly coldhearted Warbucks cannot help but learn to love this wonderful girl.

Oliver decides to help Annie find her long lost parents by offering a reward to any couple who can prove to him they are Annie’s parents. However, Miss Hannigan, her evil brother, Rooster, and a female accomplice, plan to impersonate those people to claim the reward for themselves, putting Annie in great danger.

Mosman Musical Society (MMS) is working hard to put together a memorable show which will feature a  very talented cast of local girls as the orphans and a wonderful mix of familiar faces from previous MMS shows in addition to some great new talent in some of the leading roles.

The show opens on Friday the 17th June at the Zenith Theatre in Chatswood. A total of 8 great shows will entertain lower North Shore audiences with evergreens ballads such as: Tomorrow, NYC, and Hard Knock Life, to name just a few hits from the shows’ wonderful score.

DATES
Friday 17 June 7.30 pm Saturday 18 June 2 pm & 7.30 pm Sunday 19 June 3 pm Thursday 23 June 7.30 pm Friday 24 June 7.30 pm Saturday 25 June 2 pm & 7.30 pm

For more about Annie – The Musical, visit http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=ANNIEZEN16&v=ZEN
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NOEL COWARD’S HAY FEVER @ THE DRAMA THEATRE SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

Hay Fever- second

Above- Tom  Conroy as Simon Bliss and Helen Thomson as Myra Arundel. Featured- Heather Mitchell as Judith Bliss and Josh McConville as Sandy Tyrell in Noel Coward’s Hay Fever. 

Life is never dull or boring in the Bliss family, for whom all the world truly is a stage. Life has to be lived to the  fullest, and every meeting  has to end up in a major scene.

Four guests are invited to the Bliss’ family’s country estate for the weekend. It isn’t long into the weekend that these guests discover that they are just the hosts’ playthings, and isn’t long before they start to make plans to escape.

Early last year Imara Savage helmed a highly successful revival of leading Australian playwright Andrew Bovell’s comic masterpiece After Dinner  and she displays equal dexterity with her revival of this Coward classic.

Alicia Clements’ eye-catching, elegant design, featuring a large  living  room space that, via french doors, backs out into a back garden, places us in the anarchic, freewheeling world of the ever playful Bliss family. At its centrepiece is an old fashioned bath used more like a sofa by some of the characters.

Heather Mitchell gives a consummate performance as the outrageous, attention seeking, drama queen matriarch Judith Bliss. Tony Llewellyn Jones plays Judith’s hunched over, doddery novelist husband, David. Harriet  Dyer and Tom Conroy are their two brash and bratty progeny.

Josh McConville as the playboy amateur boxer, Sandy Tyrell, Helen Thomson plays pretentious socialite, Myra, Alan Dukes  as gentleman diplomat  Richard  Greatham, and Briallen Clarke as  the nervous, shy Jackie are the four guests who find themselves very much at the whim and mercy of their manic hosts.

The ever brilliant Genevieve Lemon shines as Clara, housemaid and Judith’s former dresser, who is sometimes very grudging in providing her services in an increasingly chaotic environment.

The marvellously played out scene that sees Judith announce to all and sundry that she will divorce David and marry Richard after she seductively persuades Richard to kiss her, is on its very own, worth the price of admission.

Larger than life and much funnier, the Sydney Theatre Company’s production of Noel Coward’s HAY FEVER is playing the Drama Theatre, Sydney Opera House until Saturday 21 May.

http://www.sydneytheatre.com.au

PLACES WOMEN MAKE BY JANE JOSE

Jose - second

Featured photo of Jane Jose by Kiren.

Jane Jose’s PLACES WOMEN MAKE tells the stories of women who have shaped and are shaping Australian cities – its buildings, spaces, and social and political agendas.

PLACES WOMEN MAKE features a forward by Wendy McCarthy AO. In regards to our own country it has a rather Sydney bias and concentrates mainly on the capital cities.

Internationally it looks at major cities such as London, New York and Singapore and the changes in their  cityscapes and environment.

Jose works as an urbanist, author and Chief Executive Officer  of the Sydney Community Foundation. Continue reading PLACES WOMEN MAKE BY JANE JOSE

A MAN WALKS INTO A BAR @ BLOOD MOON THEATRE KINGS CROSS

 

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Everyone loves a good title.  A MAN WALKED INTO A BAR has been comedy gold for generations and in Off the Avenue’s production of the same name, it’s truth in advertising.  The show is at Blood Moon Theatre at the World Bar and a man walks in.  A woman walks in.  A folk singer walks in.  A reviewer walks in. The audience walks in and there we all are in a bar.

This is  absurdist comedy with a weaving, convoluted series of male/female in-a-bar behaviours.  It’s an entertaining evening of non sequiturs, lots of character changes and some sweet little songs to top it off.

The script by New Zealander David Geary is a great fun in places and the stream of consciousness, word play and Monty Python-esque word association is a part of the charm of the production.  There were a few opening night nerves but it’s no mean feat to learn a text like this and the professionalism and the rehearsal that has gone into to the work is evident. Continue reading A MAN WALKS INTO A BAR @ BLOOD MOON THEATRE KINGS CROSS

MUSICA VIVA PRESENTS STEPHEN HOUGH @ CITY RECITAL HALL

Hough second

Pictures of pianist Stephen Hough who is currently touring for Musica Viva, playing  Schubert, Franck, Liszt and his new composition, Piano Sonata III ‘Trinitas’

Pianist Stephen Hough’s recent recital in Sydney was presented by Musica Viva as part of its 2016 International Concert Season. It was a programme which showed him to be a musician whose interpretation of the works shows profound preparation and superbly expressive results.

As the music unfolded we witnessed Hough as artisan, athlete, engineer, composer-pianist and sonic landscaper. The touching expression and structure of works from Schubert, César Franck, Liszt, and  Hough’s new serialist piano work shone in his hands.

The thoughtful treatment of musical line, melody and pianistic effect throughout the recital offered the audience plenty of memorable moments to enjoy whilst encountering the full arc of each composition. Hough created mood events of incredible colour. Each vivid atmosphere was drenched in a large range of nuance.

To open the recital we were exposed to the unique but beautiful melancholy of Schubert via his Piano Sonata No 14 D784 (1823). The earliest work in this programme, this dark sonata from the final five years of Schubert’s life was played with a satisfying swoop through its  emotional territories. Here especially Hough’s remarkable soft playing dazzled.  Schubert’s gently ominous pendulum lilt alternated with exciting chordal passages.

The third movement of this sonata with its uneasy runs that constantly overlap and change direction was a section of this work delivered with measured subtlety. The intimate clarity of this finale displayed the tasteful communication, technical facility and poignant emotional results Hough continued to achieve at the keyboard in this recital.

Following this Schubert work was César Franck’s Prélude, Choral et Fugue (1884). Franck’s expansion on the traditional prelude and fugue format contains a multi-layered texture for the pianist to negotiate. Hough’s navigation through the tender rippling moments always possessed a fulfilling forward-looking aspect.

This work’s complex filigree was always firmly anchored, allowing key melodic motifs to sing clearly. The balance between melody and dense accompaniment was well maintained even in Hough’s personal rendering of some sections at an extremely quiet dynamic level. Contrasts were excitingly highlighted in the work. The interplay of fugal voices and other material satisfyingly led to the virtuosic conclusion.

Following interval, we heard Stephen Hough’s Piano Sonata III ‘Trinitas’ (2015). The work, a commission from a Catholic magazine, demonstrated an imaginative blend between serialist technique from last century and programmatic ideas surrounding tension, resolution and concepts of the Holy Trinity.

This exploration of the serialism brought a wealth of interesting pianistic textures whilst satisfying all demands of the strict avant-garde method. It confirmed a hefty intellectual dimension to this recital from Hough the pianist also known as a true polymath and his significant  success as a pianist-composer.

The remainder of the recital was devoted to music by another pianist-composer, Franz Liszt. Two of the Valses Oubliées S215 (1881-84) and two Études transcendantes S139 (1852). The performances again showcased Stephen Hough’s ability to brilliantly juxtapose the music’s  bravura passages with moments of delicate poetry. The final etude was an exciting technical tour de force. It was followed after several ovations by encores with yet more intimate lyricism, poetry and poise.

Stephen Hough continues his national tour until May 2, with concerts in Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne and Perth.

MICHELE LIM PRESENTS HUSTLE BEAR : A TRUE STORY @ ENMORE LANEWAY

Following the sell out success of her first show Limsanity and The Mayor of Easy Street (in 3D!), Michele Lim is back for another thought provoking, feel good comedy show.
Fresh from her travels in Taiwan, Michele takes you on a journey to find your inner hustle bear and put yourself out there.

Combining her love for comedy, hip hop and story telling, this is an original and quirky show you don’t want to miss.

“Great Jokes! Great Fun! Can’t wait to see more!” – Dan Ilic (A Rational Fear, Can of Worms, Hungry Beast)

“Her material is thoughtful and sharp, her stage presence immediately likeable and her delivery somehow ‘casual’ while clearly very focussed.” – Bruce Griffiths (Good News Week, The Glass House, Enough Rope)

DATES
10th, 12th,14th May 2016 @7:15pm

VENUE

Enmore Laneway, 118-132 Enmore Rd, Newtown NSW 2042

For more about Hustle Bear: A true story, visit- http://www.sydneycomedyfest.com.au/single-event?show_id=1305
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TINALLEY STRING QUARTET PRESENTS NATURE THROUGH ETERNITY @ UTZON ROOM SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE

Tinalley String Quartet

Tinalley String Quartet, one of Australia’s finest and internationally recognised chamber ensembles presents their first program for the 2016 season, Through Nature to Eternity with special guest artist, ARIA awarded singer/songwriter Lior.

PROGRAM:
Ravel String Quartet in F major
Ade Vincent/Lior Song Cycle (World Premiere)*
Dvorak Cypresses 2, 3 & 4 for String Quartet
Lior My Grandfather
Barber Adagio from String Quartet Opus 11
Nigel Westlake/Lior Sim Shalom from Compassion for String Quartet & Voice#
*Commissioned by Melbourne Recital Centre
# Commissioned by Julian Burnside QC

DATES
May 2 & 3, 2016 @ 7.30pm

VENUE- Utzon Room, Sydney Opera House.

Bookings

02 9250 7777 or sydneyoperahouse.com
Cost – Adults $60 · Concession $50 · Under 30 $30

For more about Through Nature to Eternity, visit https://tinalley.com.au

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LICENSE TO QUILL : A NEW NOVEL BY JACOPO DELLA QUERCIA

Ingenious author Jacopo Della Quercia.
Ingenious author Jacopo Della Quercia.

Pay attention 007 aficionados.

It’s Shakespeare shaken not stirred in Jacapo Della Quercia’s LICENSE TO QUILL, an origin story of the Double O section that combines the creation of the stage play Macbeth amid the foiling of the Gunpowder Plot and the evil genius, Guy Fawkes.

Before there was Bond, there was the Bard, before there was M, there was W, and before there was Q there was the Double O section, the Ordnance Office, presided over by Francis Bacon.

According to this Jacobean caper, the ordnance office was tasked by King Henry VIII in 1543 to serve as quartermaster to all the arms and wares in his military. Continue reading LICENSE TO QUILL : A NEW NOVEL BY JACOPO DELLA QUERCIA

WILLOUGHBY SYMPHONY PRESENTS INSPIRATIONS @ THE CONCOURSE, CHATSWOOD

 

Caro String QuartetAbove- The Caro String Quartet. Featured photo- Conductor Alexander Briger.

Under the umbrella title INSPIRATIONS, the Willoughby Symphony led by the precise, dynamic baton of Alexander Briger, presented four short works which made for a musical feast with something for everyone. Throughout the concert there was a dynamic, warm tone,  spectacular solos and fine ensemble playing.

The wonderful  Caro String Quartet were featured in the first half of the programme.

First on the programme was Ralph Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. This piece was given a lush, lyrical , haunting performance with the three sections of the orchestra, full of rich intensity, wonderfully overlapping, at times. Continue reading WILLOUGHBY SYMPHONY PRESENTS INSPIRATIONS @ THE CONCOURSE, CHATSWOOD

FRIENDS RECOMMEND 47 BOOKS

Nineteen Eighty Four

The role of the literary reviewer is to provide both positive and negative written feedback on the book in question. It entails subjectivity but I believe that the critic’s main aim is to vividly and accurately delve into the mind’s eye of the author with detailed descriptions of the text, the use of devices conveying rhythm of the language used and meaning, also how the book affects the reader emotionally and/or intellectually.

There is a saying that “everyone’s a critic”. When I read a book, it inevitably has an impact on me. The writers here have chosen works of literature that have engrossed them and left an indelible imprint on them.

The erudite reviewers are from varied backgrounds. Here are a few highlights from FORTY SEVEN BOOKS:-

Nineteen Eighty Four (1948) by George Orwell, review by Tanya Robb. “The political themes in the book are censorship, state controlled surveillance, suppression of dissenting opinion and the use of hate and fear mongering for political power…” Continue reading FRIENDS RECOMMEND 47 BOOKS

EXHIBITION ON SCREEN : RENOIR REVERED AND REVILED- FROM THE BARNES FOUNDATION

Renoir 571 x 284

The latest in the wonderful Exhibition on Screen series,  this film focuses on the amazing Barnes collection in Philadelphia.

Pierre Auguste Renoir, the famous French Impressionist painter, produced approximately seven thousand works, and the Barnes collection houses about 180 of them, mostly his ‘late’ works.

Renoir’s paintings mostly feature saturated colour and vibrant light , often concentrating on people in intimate and candid compositions. The lush, sensuous female nude was one of his major subjects that he constantly returned to. He was fascinated by the play of light on flesh and the changes in texture.

The Barnes collection concentrates on his late work. We learn about the influence of artists such as Delacroix, Courbet and Manet on the great artist’s work. Continue reading EXHIBITION ON SCREEN : RENOIR REVERED AND REVILED- FROM THE BARNES FOUNDATION

BOLSHOI BALLET PRESENTS THE TAMING OF THE SHREW

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The Taming of the Shrew is generally extremely difficult to bring off in this day and age. However this is a contemporarized, dazzling choreographed and danced version that will have you cheering at the end.

In the ballet world the most well known version of this Shakespearean work previously was  by John Cranko (1969).

This is a new version specifically worked for the Bolshoi by Maillot and absolutely sizzles. Maillot condenses the complicated plot of what perhaps is probably the most erotic and “politically incorrect” of Shakespeare’s plays to focus mainly on the central characters: the aggressive, haughty, bad-tempered Katherina — the ‘’ shrew ‘’ of the title — who scares away all would be suitors and is contrasted with her sister, the sweet and good Bianca, who, according to tradition, must wait to be married until after Katherina is wed. Continue reading BOLSHOI BALLET PRESENTS THE TAMING OF THE SHREW

TMO MET CONCERT #2 @ EUGENE GOOSSENS HALL ABC CENTRE

Benjamin Kopp

Above : Pianist Benjamin Kopp (from the Streeton Trio) performed the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No 1 with TMO. Featured image: Sarah-Grace Williams-Artistic Director and conductor of TMO.

The Metropolitan Orchestra’s cohesiveness, collective stamina and calibre of expression continues to go from strength to strength. These exciting qualities enabled works of Russian greats to be featured exclusively in Met Concert #2. Their compositions were delivered with scintillating levels of clarity and emotion.

In yet another sold out event at the ABC Centre’s Eugene Goossens Hall, the programme consisted of two major Russian orchestral classics from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The first half of the concert saw the orchestra collaborate with Australian pianist Benjamin Kopp in a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto no 1 Op 23. Following interval we heard a stunning performance of the Symphony No 10 in E Minor Op 93 by Shostakovich. Continue reading TMO MET CONCERT #2 @ EUGENE GOOSSENS HALL ABC CENTRE

ENSEMBLE THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS GOOD PEOPLE @ ENSEMBLE THEATRE

 Tara-Morice-Christopher-Stollery-and-Zindzi-Okenyo-in-Good-People-photo-by-Clare-Hawle
Above- Tara Morice, Christopher Stollery and Zindzi-Okenyo in GOOD PEOPLE. Featured photo- Tara Morice and Christopher Stollery. Production photography by Clare Hawley.

There are two main discourses happening at the heart of American playwright David Lindsay-Abaire’s sensitively wrought play GOOD PEOPLE. The weight and intractability of the class system that is prevalent in so many countries. And the question of Free Will versus fate. How do some good, hard working people  succeed whereas others fall by the wayside?! Is it more about good fortune and the ability to make the most of one’s opportunities rather than one’s own native abilities that is the telling factor?! With these two themes running through the play, GOOD PEOPLE makes for compelling theatre.

The two leading characters- Margaret and Mike- were friends, and for a short time lovers, who grew up in Southie, a struggling, working class town situated in Boston. Whilst Margaret has lived mainly a hand to mouth existence,  and is a single mother struggling to bring up a disabled daughter, Mike has gone on to establish a brilliant career as a medic, and is raising a family with a beautiful, intelligent wife in leafy, upmarket Chester Hill. Continue reading ENSEMBLE THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS GOOD PEOPLE @ ENSEMBLE THEATRE

Musician Project Presents: Ein Heldenleben @ Verbruggen Hall

Musician Project Orchestra under the direction of Fabian Russell

The Musician Project Orchestra is back in June to present some of the most electrifying music for large orchestra. Returning to the podium to lead the ensemble for his second time is the masterly Fabian Russell, who directed the transcendent Musician Project performance of Mahler’s Ninth Symphony last year.

The orchestra are also excited to welcome home the young Australian cellist Jack Bailey, who returns from studies in the United Kingdom to feature in Sergei Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante, one of the most impassioned and rarely-performed works in the cello repertoire.

The concert concludes with the most extravagant of Richard Strauss’ tone poems, Ein Heldenleben. An orchestral tour-de-force of heroism, love, conflict and triumph, ultimately fading into peaceful fulfilment.

THE PROGRAM

STRAUSS Feierlicher Einzug, TrV 224
PROKOFIEV Sinfonia Concertante, Op. 125
STRAUSS Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40

DATE

Sunday June 19, 5:00pm

VENUE

Verbruggen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium Of Music.

TICKETS- Pay What You Think!

For more about Musician Project Presents: Ein Heldenleben, visit http://www.trybooking.com/LBRY
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