Mark Tedeschi AM QC is the Senior Crown Prosecutor for New South Wales. This is Tedeschi’s third true crime book. The other two, both published by Simon & Schuster Australia, are: ‘Eugenia: a true story of adversity, tragedy, crime and courage’, published in 2012 and ‘Kidnapped: the crime that shocked the nation’ published in 2015. ‘Eugenia’ was shortlisted in 2013 as a finalist in the Australian Book Industry Awards and the Australian Crime Writers Association Ned Kelly Awards. Kidnapped was also shortlisted for a Ned Kelly award. Mark is also the author of ‘Shooting around Corners’, a book of his photography over 25 years, published by Beagle Press in 2012.

Tedeschi’s new work explores the most sensational trial of mass murder in Australia’s legal history which occurred in 1838 when eleven convicts and former convicts were put on trial for the murder of 28 aboriginal men, women and children at Myall Creek in the New England district of New South Wales. The trial created enormous controversy at the time, because it was virtually unknown for Europeans to be charged with the murder of Aboriginals. Continue reading MURDER AT MYALL CREEK – THE TRIAL THAT DEFINED A NATION BY MARK TEDESCHI QC


Featured image- A scene from the award winning feature film 4 KINGS.

The 15th German Film Fest is being held on 15-29 November 2016 at Palace’s Chauvel and Norton Street cinemas in Sydney, as well as in Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra.

The 36 films in this festival include features and documentaries, retro classics, kids films and were selected from 250 German language films from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. They include 25 Australian premieres, and films such as Dirty Games an investigative sports documentary; this year’s biggest box-office hit The Most Beautiful Day about two terminally ill patients who decide to go out with a bang on an African road trip; and James Franco starring in Wim Wenders’ 3D epic Everything Will Be Fine.

The Goethe-Institute Director, Sonja Griegoschewski declared that it is a “particularly inspiring year for women, both behind and in front of the camera with Maren Ade’s Toni Erdmann (Winner of the FIPRESCI Grand Prix in Cannes), Doris Dorrie’s Fukushima, Mon Amour, Julia Jentsch in 24 Weeks, and many more.”

These others include 4 KINGS, the award winning feature debut from Theresa von Eltz, about four emotionally troubled teenagers from Hamburg who spend Christmas in a psychiatric unit.

Christmas is approaching, a time where there are societal messages of close happy families, of love, welcome gift giving and hope. It is also a time for reflection and contemplation. This film reveals lives in stark contrast to these messages and provides a contemplative air and time for viewer reflection.



A love letter to the Lewis lunacy and legacy, JERRY LEWIS: THE MAN BEHIND THE CLOWN is a sixty minute salute to the rubber faced farceur and film maker.

The picture begins with a recorded quote from Lewis, “there are three things that are real: God, Human Folly and Laughter.” Lewis certainly made a lucrative living from the latter two.

The Lewis brand of comedy is grounded in the juvenile and infantile, making more faces than a watchmaker and delivering more falls than a forest in Autumn. Continue reading JERRY LEWIS : THE MAN BEHIND THE CLOWN



Production photos by Brett Boardman.

The Wharf Revue has become an end-of-year Sydney theatrical tradition, usually selling out well in advance. Now in its 16th year, the latest iteration, Back to Bite You, is once again written and performed by Drew Forsythe, Jonathan Biggins, and Phil Scott, with newcomer Paige Gardiner taking on the girls’ roles on the night I attended.

Like previous Revues, this one covers the year’s local political landscape, with a fair smattering of US election and a bit of Brexit thrown in for good measure. Also, like previous incarnations, some parts work better than others. Continue reading THE WHARF REVUE 2016 @ SYDNEY THEATRE COMPANY




THE DAYS ARE AS GRASS by Carol Hall, in ninety-five minutes comprises eight short entertaining plays, each delightful in its own way, but all with dialogue designed to make you think, and to make you contemplate your future. The director has chosen a fine cast of the best of Sydney’s more mature (in age) actors.

Vacation starring Felicity Steel and Richard Cotter

A happily married couple are flying for a romantic weekend in Cairns, but instead become obsessed with a cheating couple.

Last Will and Testament starring Susan M Kennedy

Beautifully delivered monologue, socialite tries to write her will to leave everyone a small memento, and the worrying about Contesting A Will – defence of Succession Claims and Family Provision Act NSW Claims. This clever monologue delivers the important message, to just leave your worldly goods to only your relatives.

Life Time starring Christine Greenough and Kimbal Knuckey

Apparent memory loss, a blessing in disguise, as this couple heavily rely on silence instead of conversation.

Jack and Jill starring Sarah Plummer and Richard Cotter

Adult children, brother and sister. After 35 years apart, their happily divorced parents are ruining their children’s lives by remarrying.

The River Jordan Lamp starring Sandra Campbell

One woman monologue, with perfect timing tells the delightful tale an unusual connection with Raymond, a very young indigenous man, and her “sin of the flesh” that allows a precious lamp to find a new home.

Sensations starring Felicity Steel and Kimbal Knuckey

Constant memories of childhood, as this very angry bickering couple in matching bathrobes and slippers, have just taken all of their secretly saved up pills, and are waiting for those pills to end their lives.

The Days Are As Grass starring Christine Greenough and Richard Cotter
In love with always having the last word, we see a younger man with no natural charm, pitted against an erudite older woman via an intense argument about what happened to their lust affair of many years ago. Dialogue intensive, each effectively uses literary quotes with affection, but with intentions unknown.

The Last Word starring Felicity Steel and Kimbal Knuckey

A husband chatters away as he pushes his mute and paralysed wife around in her wheelchair. However as she dances around the stage, the audience learns her thoughts.

The season runs at the Depot Theatre, 142 Addison Road, Marrickville from the 19th until the 29th October. Performance times 8 pm Wednesdays to Saturdays and 5 pm Sundays.






As is the case every year the upcoming Jewish International Film Festival (JIFF) will again be strong in the documentary category with a number of outstanding documentaries.

South African director Saxon Logan’s film SYLVIA : TRACING BLOOD is bound to  attract a lot of interest. Logan’s film  looks at the life and times of the late Sylvia Raphael, whom the Jerusalem Post described as Mossad’s legendary femme fatale.

The film has a  gob-smacking –  one can’t quite get one’s head around it – quality to it. Here was the story of a a beautiful young woman, who came from a good home, born in Cape Town, South Africa to an Afrikaner mother and a Jewish father, who was recruited by Mossad, taking over from Israeli spy Eli Cohen, following his public hanging in Damascus in My 1965, and became one of the their best and most cold and calculating spies, infiltrating the highest ranks within the Palestinian Liberation Office( (PLO). She worked for Mossad under the alias of Patricia Roxborough and assumed the role of international press photographer so that she could get easy access across borders. Continue reading SYLVIA : TRACING BLOOD



The elephant in the room in Stephen Carleton’s new play is Climate Change. All the characters know that their inability to respond and react to the effects of climate change will be their downfall but they are just unable to come up with any meaningful plan of action.

In many ways this feels like a prophetic play..human beings have an inexhaustiable ability to procrastinate which can often lead to dire consequences.

Gale Edward’s very entertaining production with larger than life performances by a strong cast make Carleton’s dark, absurdist tale palatable. Continue reading GRIFFIN THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS ‘THE TURQUOISE ELEPHANT’ @ THE STABLES


This magnificent double bill will leave you breathless and stunned with awe at the superb performances. The brilliant Sydney Dance dancers excel themselves and are in top form.

Opening the program was Gabrielle Nankivell’s Wildebeest,  first seen in 2014 as part of New Breed.

Nankivell is based in South Australia. Darkly hypnotic and haunting, Wildebeest seeks to explore the hidden ‘beast’ of the dancers. The dancers reveal various aspects of the beast – at times they are like Ents in the forest , or a startled feral creature. Sometimes they all run herd-like.

A lone beast is fragmented and altered each time it makes contact with a nearby group. Nankivell’s choreography is very demanding and athletic. It is also very detailed with assorted avian and creature-like details. They fly, they strut, they explore their surroundings and nervously sniff the air …Some of the slick ensemble choreography is machine like, or like clogs interlocking, as the dancers trace the evolution from animal to human to machine/robot and even beyond.

Bernhard Knauer has a compelling opening solo looming out of the darkness – is he a just born creature finding his feet? – at times he is like a controlled puppet, other times he is explosively exploring space.

Cass Mortimer Eipper intently prowled and sinuously coiled and stretched like a large cat and Charmene Yap also had a tantalizing solo. There is a terrific duo from Holly Doyle and Todd Sutherland . And Janessa Dufty has an intense , gripping Shaman like closing solo.

Luke Smiles’ electronic soundscape is extremely powerful, pulsating and humming. The unisex costumes by Fiona Holley of shorts and tops were in various autumn shades and dark colours.
The second work was Bonachela’s Anima. Dazzling abstract dance, Bonachela’s work attempts to explore the boundary between form and spirit, expressed through the way the dancers utilize their extraordinary elevation and almost fly. Bonachela’s choreography is at times extremely demanding and athletic.

London based, Bulgarian born Dobrinka Tabakova’s elegant ,passionate and haunting score ( Insight for Strings trio , written 2002) was in parts driving and relentless, in other sections heartbreakingly elegiac and lyrical (hints of Tavener’s Protecting Veil). Aleisa Jelbart’s costumes looked like light sleepwear, and a couple of the men were topless. There was no set as such, rather breathtaking lighting and visuals by Clemens Habicht and Benjamin Cisterne whose lighting design glows and luminously transforms the dancers, drenching them in colour – including blinding whites, searing reds and zippy turquoises.

Slinky sculptural pas de-deux blend to astonishing trios with unusual lifts. Bonachela’s choreography demands soft feline jumps combined with long, stretched line as the dancers dart and leap. A highlight would have to be the extended tender and intimate pas de deux for Cass Mortimer Eipper and Petros Treklis with its aspects of male competition and tension, attempts to reach out and withdraw, elegantly detailed hands and an idiosyncratic use of elbows expressing physical longing and desire. Juliette Barton and Sam Young Wright followed this with another mesmerizing duo and the ensemble returned for a leaping finale.

The Sydney Dance Company’s production of UNTAMED is playing at the Roslyn Packer theatre until October 29. Running time 1 hr 45 minutes including one interval.


On Wednesday night I had the opportunity to appreciate SECRET BRIDESMAID’S BUSINESS by Elizabeth Coleman at the Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre. This wonderful Australian classic comedy tells the story of Meg Bacon, her mum, and girlfriends as they come together in a hotel suite to have some girlie fun before Meg’s wedding the following day.

The current production, directed by Jonathon Brown, had many valuable insights for the interpretation of the characters .

Melissa Kathryn Rose portrays the main character Meg well, giving us a first class performance from the beginning until the end, showing us the dream of every woman on her wedding day.

Besides her appears Colleen Bacon (mother of the bride) played by Allison Brown, in her character who prepares all the details for the wedding of her beloved daughter, she is a perfectionists who has a good eye for details, she kept a good chemistry with the protagonist. 

The Bridesmaids, Meg’s best friends, interpreted by Katherine Babatzanis and Christine Graf, keep us in suspense as to whether they will or will not let Meg know the news that they have leaned that Meg’s fiance has been unfaithful.

Elizabeth Coleman’s play is a seriously funny play about life. It has a lot to say about about honesty, friendship and loyalty in today’s difficult world. Recommended, the production has one remaining performance tonight at 8 pm.

The cast : Katharine Babatzanis, Allison Brown, Christine Graf, Samantha Sullivan, Michael Lundberg and Melissa Kathryn Rose.





Kicked out of university. Makes a career as a people smuggler. Is this the sort of person we want to come to Australia? You bet it is!

It may sound like a Lubitsch comedy title, but MONSIEUR MAYONNAISE is actually a stunning documentary about film maker Phillippe Mora’s father, Georges Mora.

Expelled from university where he was studying medicine by the Nazi’s, Georges served with the French Resistance smuggling children to safety across the Swiss border.

After the war, he and his wife, Mirka, emigrated to Australia, where they became part of the Melbourne bohemian scene, opening up a restaurant, an establishment that was renowned for its mayonnaise. Continue reading MONSIEUR MAYONNAISE


There’s nothing quite like a good sculpture.  The aesthetic, the appeal is unique.

Fans of this lovely art form are in for a genuine treat if they visit  Woollahra Council’s current Small Sculpture exhibition.  There is so much good work to see, sculpted and cultivated in so many different styles.

The exhibition, presented in a room in the harbourside rear section  of the Council’s chambers , features the work of all 46 finalists, selected from some 614 entries.

This years’ judging panel comprised three judges – Wendy Whitely OAM, Ambassador for the Visual Arts, Rhonda Davis, Senior Curator at the Macquarie University Art Gallery, and  Barry Keldoulis, CEO and Group Fairs Director of Art Fairs Australia.

This trio of  judges  awarded this years’ prize to very experienced sculptor  Todd Robinson for his work Psychic Staircase, which is part of a series of  works featuring balloons that droop and slump  as the force of gravity  appears to bear down  on them. Mr Robinson  received a cheque for  $15,000 in a late afternoon function held late Friday afternoon marking the opening of the exhibition.

Certainly a fine, thought provoking work, as indeed many of the works were.  The exhibition features a Viewers’  Choice award with attendees being invited to vote at the  time or at a later time online.

My ‘picks’  from the exhibition  were Stephen Bird’s Saturn Eating A Man’s Leg ( winner of the Special Commendation Award ($1,000),  Emma Coulter’s Construction #7 (Shifting Test Patterns), Owen Leong’s Force Field (Amygdala), Julie Rapp’s One Hand Making The Other Hand (Instrumental Series), and Peter Zappa’s Alberto’s Bike.

Now it’s your turn! This free exhibition of the finalist’s works for this the 16th year of the Small Sculpture Prize is available for viewing at the Council’s Chambers until 30 October. Viewing times are weekdays between 9 am and 5 pm, and weekends between 10 am and 4 pm.

All sculptures are available for sale with the exception of Robinson’s winning work which has been acquired by Woollahra Council to add to its collection.


All images by Ben Apfelbaum (c).


Last Saturday 15th October Taronga Park Zoo held a parade from Hyde Park down Macquarie Street to the Opera House forecourt. It consisted of ten vividly lit animal sculptures in bright vibrant colours each sculpture being followed by scores of dancing primary school children dressed as the animal that they were accompanying.

The bright colours of the ten animals were in contrast with the sad and sobering actual plight of these animals in the wild, as they were  in fact facing the threat of extinction.

These animals were the African elephant, the pangolin, the rhinoceros, the bilby, the corroboree frog, the leatherback turtle, the sun bear, the honey eater, the sumatran tiger, and the platypus.

At the Opera House huge crowds who had streamed down Macquarie street viewed the sculptures set out below the Opera House steps.

A brief song pertaining to the animals plight was performed and then the hundreds of kids and their parents flocked to marques set up in the escarpment over looking the Opera House in the Botanical Gardens for a private after party.

Images by ben Apfelbaum (c).


Last Sunday night at the State Theatre  the Australian premiere of Hacksaw Ridge took place.

HACKSAW RIDGE tells the true story of a Seventh Day Adventist Desmond Doss who was drafted into the military during the World War 2 Battle of Okinawa but refused to carry a weapon because of his beliefs. Despite that fact he was  awarded two Congressional Medals of Honour, the highest commendation of valour, but humbly only accepted one of them.

The international stars did not attend the red carpet but the film has a largely an Australian cast, many of whom were in attendance at the premiere .

Director Mel Gibson was also present and pleased with the fact that the film had a standing ovation in Cannes. It is his first directorial stint in a decade and was shot mainly in the Penrith and Richmond area.

Addendum –  In the AACTA award nominations that have just been announced, Hacksaw Ridge has received 13 nominations.

Featured image- Angela Bishop and Richard Wilkins. All images by Ben Apfelbaum (c).


All images by Ben Apfelbaum (c)

Unlike the Olympians, the Paralympians recently had their welcome home reception at the more wheelchair and disability friendly Martin Place.

Instead of cultural references to Rio De Janeiro and Tokyo, a large scale orchestra played fanfares as the Paralympians arrived on stage to receive a heroes welcome.

Team Captain Leisel Tesch received gifts from the State and City Of Sydney. After the formal ceremonies the Paralympians had a more informal but warm interaction with family, friends, and a large crowd of well wishers on what turned to a glorious Spring day.


Justin Theroux as Tom and Emily Blunt as Rachel.Pic by Barry Wetcher.

This film  is the Spring season  blockbuster topping box office receipts in both Australia and the States. This is odd because it contains no super hero nor vulgar teens. In fact, it has a positively indie feel to it. It is very Hitchcockian where a woman Rachel (Emily Blunt) from a train window to and from Manhattan believes that she is witnessing a perfect love story of a woman Megan (Hayley Bennett) who lives a few doors up from  where Rachel used to live with her ex-husband Tom (Justin Theroux) who is now remarried with a baby. Rachel then  sees on a subsequent train trip what appears to be a betrayal by this lady with a man other than her husband. Rachel is a chronic alcoholic who frequently passes out. Megan’s infidelity so unhinges Rachel that she  gets off at Megan’s station, and confronts her in a train tunnel. The next day Megan is missing and a little later is found murdered.

So here one can find elements of Hitchcock’s The Lady Vanishes, Rear Window, Spellbound  and even other more recent films such as The Bourne Identity. However, the director Tate Taylor does not have Hitchcock’s light touch and humour. There  is also a nice  Friends reference with Lisa Kudrow in a small but pivotal role, whilst Justin Theroux is Jennifer Aniston’s real life husband.

This film revolves around Rachel attempting to piece together her blackout. She suspects she may have murdered Megan as does a Detective Riley (Allison Janney). To say any more would spoil the playing out of this psychological thriller.
Continue reading THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN


Matt Hourigan as Bert


Michaela Leisk as Mary
Michaela Leisk as Mary

Willoughy Theatre presented the now-standard much loved Disney/Cameron Macintosh version, with small adjustments from the London version which was seen here at the Capitol several years ago.Matthew Bourne’s choreography is not retained but rather altered and adapted by Declan Moore and Janina Hamerlok .

Set in Edwardian times, the ever popular MARY POPPINS is based on the books by Australian author P.L.Travers, and narrates the tale of the rather dysfunctional Banks family, whose lives are changed completely and unexpectedly with the arrival of a new nanny, Mary Poppins. Continue reading WILLOUGHBY THEATRE COMPANY PRESENTS MARY POPPINS @ THE CONCOURSE CHATSWOOD


Rob Palmer
Rob Palmer

The latest in the Cabaret in the Day series at Mosman Art Gallery was Of Bing I Sing , saluting Bing Crosby (1903 -1977 ) , the legendary 20th century American crooner and movie star.

Recording more than 1700 songs, Crosby’s distinctive warm bass-baritone voice made him the best-selling recording artist of the 20th century, having sold over one billion records, tapes, compact discs and digital downloads around the world.

Written and directed by Melvyn Morrow, it was presented as a dialogue between Glenn Amer ( ‘” the musical mastermind of Moss Vale ‘’) who has ‘’ the fingers of Liberace and the voice of Mario Lanza” and a collection of 378 78 format style recordings of Crosby, and Rob Palmer, star of Better Homes and Gardens and Dancing With the Stars.

Amer at the shiny black piano was dressed in a dapper suit , Palmer in front of a large black and silver mike was far more casual in a t-shirt and denim. Palmer was tanned and had a dazzling cheeky grin .Palmer had a long introductory monologue explaining how the two met. Continue reading CABARET IN THE DAY – OF BING I SING @ MOSMAN ART GALLERY


The night Noodle Markets held annually in Hyde Park north, sponsored by the Sydney Morning Herald as part of its Good Food month, is one of the most popular culinary events in the Foodies calendar.

A balmy night, a live band, fairy lights and a full palate of Asian foods proved an irresistible draw to the huge crowds raging from hipsters to families. In fact, on the weekend that I attended it was too popular as everywhere there were large queues with a waiting time of up to half an hour.

The festival runs until October 23 and I would suggest if you are interested that you go during the week as weekends too congested.

All images by Ben Apfelbaum (c).


Beethoven could not have imagined a more glorious backdrop to his music than we experienced on Saturday  15th October! Not the cherubs and ornate cornices of the Viennese concert halls but the heavenly vista of Sydney harbour seen through the panoramic windows of the Utzon Room at Sydney Opera House.

We listened to a most interesting rendering of Beethoven’s  4th piano Concerto in G major and his Second Symphony, both transposed for a chamber ensemble and performed by the talented and enthusiastic Australian Haydyn Ensemble.

Clearly these musicians have a great depth of scholarship and performed on instruments from the time the music was composed. Both of these pieces were composed when Beethoven was almost completely deaf and both are reflective of his anguish, his joy in music and his pure genius of invention! Continue reading AUTRALIAN HAYDN ENSEMBLE – BEETHOVEN RECITAL @ UTZON ROOM SYDNEY OPERA HOUSE



Featured photo – Debra Byrne at Out From Under 2015.

On Monday 21 November, stars of the Australian entertainment industry will come together at the York Theatre, Seymour Centre in response to the issue of mental health within the profession. 

Out From Under began in 2015 in Melbourne, and is an evening aimed at removing the stigma surrounding mental health within the entertainment industry by bringing it out of the shadows.

Hosted by Gorgi Coghlan and directed by Kelley Abbey, the evening will feature performances from some of Australia’s most talented artists from all sectors of the arts community. Confirmed artists include Debra Byrne, Silvie Paladino, Rob Mills, Lucy Durack, Amy Campbell, Ben Abraham, Casey Donovan, Ainsley Melham, Loren Hunter, Michael James Scott, Heather Mitchell, Rachael Beck, Damien Leith, The Tap Pack and DrummerQueens. Musical Director for this one-off event will be Luke Hunter, with musical supervision by the acclaimed Chong Lim. Continue reading OUT FROM UNDER 2016 @ YORK THEATRE SEYMOUR CENTRE



sister-cities-by-colette-freedman-95 sister-cities-by-colette-freedman-72

This delightful black comedy concerns four very different dysfunctional step-sisters who have returned home to mourn their mother’s successful suicide.

Their mother caused these four estranged step-sisters to have quirky and completely different lives, smart females each as different as the cities for which they were named. Life is complicated and having a close-knit family is so important, but they have learnt to disagree about everything, making each woman very memorable, long after the play ends.

Deftly directed with vision nuance and care, director Roz Riley, has applied her unique paradigm to choosing a solid and compelling ensemble cast of five superb actors, each pitch perfect for their role, for this powerful and emotional play. Each sister presents as an authentic articulate individual with fascinating and realistic back-stories. The mother’s personal life choices are nothing short of shocking. Continue reading SISTER CITIES BY COLETTE FREEMAN @ THE STAR OF THE SEA MANLY


secret-house-presents-cymbeline-at-the-depot-theatre_7331 secret-house-presents-cymbeline-at-the-depot-theatre_7193 secret-house-presents-cymbeline-at-the-depot-theatre_6986 secret-house-presents-cymbeline-at-the-depot-theatre_7120

Running at just over two hours (including one interval) and with their well chosen, ensemble cast of seventeen actors, SECRET HOUSE has expertly delivered their fast-paced version, plus their well timed tweaks easily delighted the opening night audience.

Stunningly retold by director Sean O’Riordan, this ensemble piece is well worth seeing at least twice during its very limited run at The Depot Theatre. This adaptation of CYMBELINE repeatedly delivers on many levels, a quite brilliant but confronting evening of great entertainment.

Shakespeare’s rarely performed CYMBELINE, is a very dark comedy set in ancient Britain, and contains the dramatic themes of innocence and jealousy.

CYMBELINE has a very convoluted plot, with very familiar characters as found in many of his iconic works. Innogen is the only living heir of the KING CYMBELINE, but has secretly married her sweetheart Posthumus Leonatus, and Posthumus Leonatus is banished from the kingdom without his wife.

Set/Costume Designer Angelika Nieweglowski, has built this unique set by creating solid walls composed of broken wooden pallets, and a further collection of unbroken wooden pallets, that are frequently moved and shifted and stacked to become exactly what is required for each new scene/setting.

Almost every character has been deliberately costumed with torn and tattered fabrics, to my mind indicating a civilisation nearing its end, adding an extra atmosphere that gives almost post-apocalyptic expectations that are later mirrored, in the violent blood and carnage on the battlefield.

Cast included Deborah An, Jane Angharad, Alison Benstead, Alex Brown, Tom Coyne, Morgan Junor-Larwood, Celia Kelly, Dave Kirkham, Ben Scales, Keturah Sheen, Roger Smith, James Smithers, Romney Stanton.

Secret House presented CYMBELINE by William Shakespeare at the Depot Theatre, 142 Addison Road, Marrickville between  the 5th and 15th October.



Production photopgraphy by Claire Cornu.

Yes ,’’ verbatim theatre ‘ is about narrative and telling stories and yes it is most important that these particular stories be told, and we hear different voices from around the world ( in this case in particular our Asian neighbours ) but I wouldn’t really classify this as ‘theatre’ as such , rather perhaps as an autobiographical talk or lecture?

We learn the stories of three very different yet at times similar stories of families who have been refugees and asylum seekers, facing the problem of survival in their home country, escaping and being in horrendous refugee camps and then the culture shock of arriving in Australia , not speaking English and depending on another family member to translate and be their ‘voice ‘. Issues such as forced marriages, workplace bullying and living with disability are also raised.

Performance 4A have created a now recognized major position within the local theatre scene by using a fairly specific format: creation of autobiographical shows telling Asian-Australian stories, crafted from spoken narrative, archival audio and projected photos and footage (including The Serpent’s Table; Yasukichi Murakami – Through a Distant Lens and Stories East & West). Continue reading WHO SPEAKS FOR ME? @ RIVERSIDE THEATRES, PARRAMATTA



Jane Stanley, composer of Cerulean Orbits, which is receiving its world premiere performances during this Musica Viva International Concert Season Tour.

Musica Viva’s International Concert Season for 2017 continued this past week with a stunning concert by Benjamin Beilman and Andrew Tyson, a violin and piano duo from the United States. This weekend concert in Sydney continued the tour which had already taken the pair to Perth, Coffs Harbour, Armidale, Adelaide, Newcastle as well as  Sydney  earlier in the week.

The chosen programme was a solid vehicle with which to demonstrate Beilman and Tyson as individual virtuosi as well as an exciting duo. The performances of interesting and evocative works were always intensely emotional and absorbed in their mindset as well as their physical execution.

Attention to changing musical detail across styles from 1787 through to 2016 was always keen and works were articulated with an appropriate flair fitting their four distinct time periods. Intricacies of conversation from this skilled pair showcased the blend of their two instruments when used by various composers as an expressive chamber music force.

The dramatic performances began with late Mozart, namely his Sonata No 35 in A major K526 (‘for Piano and Violin’) from 1787. Mozart, if emerging from a time machine to Angel Place, would have been re-energised to discover the depth of conversation and instrumental blend occurring. Continue reading MUSICA VIVA PRESENTS BEILMAN AND TYSON IN CONCERT @ CITY RECITAL HALL



The good news is that CAFÉ SOCIETY is arguably the best looking Woody Allen film ever. But Woody’s wit takes a back seat to the look – sumptuous cinematography by Vittorio Storraro production, design by Santo Loquasto and Suzy Benzinger’s costumes.

Allow me some more emphasis– lensed by Vittorio Storaro, who won deserved Oscars for Apocalypse Now, Reds, and The Last Emperor, production design by Santo Loqausto and costumes by Suzy Benzinger make CAFÉ SOCIETY not only the best looking Woody Allen film ever, but possibly the best looking film to come out of America this year.

Bronx browns give way to honey hued Hollywood, as Bronx born Bobby is packed off by his mother to work with her brother Phil Stern (a Woody wordplay on philistine) in the motion picture business. Continue reading WOODY ALLEN’S NEW FILM : CAFE SOCIETY

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