Tag Archives: Graeme Murphy

OPERA AUSTRALIA: THE MERRY WIDOW @ DAME JOAN SUTHERLAND THEATRE

Above: Alexander Lewis and Danielle de Niese as Danilo Danilovich and Hanna Glavari. Featured image: Danielle de Niese and male ensemble.

It is a challenge to present a modern public with something of a soap-operetta like The Merry Widow. This light work profiles gender, marriage and loyalty to a small state very specifically and in a contrasting way to our contemporary approach.

However, the cast and creatives at Opera Australia, and Lehár’s direct and beautiful score as interpreted with infectious lilt by Vanessa Scammell save the day in this regard. The attractive, engaging production spills over us with sumptuous momentum, visual delights and a dazzling, physicality to the storytelling. Continue reading OPERA AUSTRALIA: THE MERRY WIDOW @ DAME JOAN SUTHERLAND THEATRE

Opera Australia’s Turandot @ The Dame Joan

Members of the Opera Australia ensemble. Photo: Branco Gaica
Members of the Opera Australia ensemble. Photo: Branco Gaica

It has been said that there are two emotions, love and fear. The creative pairing of Puccini and Graeme Murphy is successful in vividly outlining such feelings in the current revival of Murphy’s stunning production.

Conductor Christian Badea presents a strong realisation of Puccini’s atmospheric score. Inspired by this music, Murphy uses intersecting movement prescribed for sub-sections of the ensemble as well as challenging unisons at times such as human waves depicting swirling emotions and troubled minds.

The setting, Peking’s Imperial Palace, is evoked with excellent composite sets and shifting textures as designed by Kristian Fredrikson. His detailed costuming and props dazzle, as does the choreography which asks for these to be manipulated during poses so as to hide or reveal the characters’ vulnerabilities or suggest general unrest. Continue reading Opera Australia’s Turandot @ The Dame Joan

Behind the Scenes with the Australian Ballet

BEHIND THE SCENES WITH THE AUSTRALIAN BALLET Swan Lake
BEHIND THE SCENES WITH THE AUSTRALIAN BALLET Swan Lake

Suitable for ages 10 and above we will get a fascinating, privileged insider’s look and exclusive access into the world of an elite dancer. We’ll observe morning class on stage – a daily ritual for all the dancers of The Australian Ballet – and this year, for the first time ever, we’ll sit in on private coaching as a principal dancer prepares for their role. Raw, beautiful and full of insights – this is a unique, behind-the-scenes look at what it really takes to prepare for a performance. Don’t miss this special in-theatre experience .                  

Continue reading Behind the Scenes with the Australian Ballet

Spotlight on Dame Maggie Scott

Scott- featured

An impressive new biography of Dame Maggie  Scott has been published by the Text Publishing Company. The author is Michelle Potter, a notable dance author, historian and curator who holds a Doctorate  in art history and dance history from the Australian National University. Amongst other things she has received two Australian Dance Awards – for Services to Dance in 2003 and Outstanding Achievement in Dance on Film in 2001.

Dame Margaret (Maggie) Scott looms large in the history of late twentieth century/early twenty-first century dance in Australia. This biography of a pioneering figure in Australian dance history was launched as part of the fiftieth anniversary of the Australian Ballet School celebrations, most appropriately as Scott was founding Director of the school and a dancer and teacher of immense vision and intellect. Continue reading Spotlight on Dame Maggie Scott