Archive for the 'Woodford' Category

10
Feb
15

Barbara and Barry’s Sweet, Sour & Saucy

 

Barbara and Barry’s Sweet, Sour & Saucy

Judith Wright Centre

Judith Wright Centre Performance Space

February 5 – 7 2015

 

Reviewed by Xanthe Coward

 

SweetSourandSaucyPromo2.jpg

 

Barbara & Barry are experts on love. They host their own radio show from home, offering listeners some very interesting relationship advice. Sweet, Sour & Saucy is a nostalgic night of unique comedy, solid musicianship and terrific, intimate storytelling. I feel like we’re in Barbara & Barry’s living room, sharing a “randy shandy” and resisting tossing keys into a bowl (because that would be highly inappropriate, wouldn’t it?!)

 

It’s a kitsch, cute show, largely due to a retro box set designed by Josh Master of the Designiverse McIntosh, and vintage costumes by Rowenna Mistress of Wardrobe Western. The characters are very nice, and just quietly, a little bit naughty, continuously pushing the envelope with their fake phone calls and improvised letters from “listeners” who struggle in love.

 

SWEET,+SOUR+AND+SAUCY

 

How did I miss seeing these guys at Woodford? They must have been a hit in The Parlour, the same sexy venue to host The Escapists and a bevy of burlesque beauties. It’s a show that can go anywhere, and be enjoyed by anyone.

 

I’ll admit, I wondered at the end of Act 1 what their caper might be. After all, they’d said thank you and goodnight! What would come after Interval? An entirely different show, that’s what! The Live Love Show, which brought the pair out front to a grand piano to sing a few more songs and share a few more letters, this time, apparently, legit letters, which had been penned before the show by audience members.

 

SweetSourandSaucyBJC.jpg

 

This act was so different from the first, that I wondered if it would not be more sensible to keep them separate. This would make a slightly shorter, sharper, neater show without an interval and earn this talented duo a return season to appeal equally to new and returning audiences. If you’ve never seen Melissa Western perform, keep an eye out for the next opportunity; Western is to cabaret what Pippy Longstocking is to childhood liturature. A delight to see and hear, she’s actually amazing, with a jukebox voice enabling multiple musical styles and the ability to keep the beat with a washboard, tap shoes and kitchen spoons. Joined by real life husband, the equally impressive Tnee Dyer, these two bring to Brisbane a rare sort of genuine joy simply by being completely natural with one another, and with us, despite being completely OTT at the same time!

 

After the show I completed a mini iPad arTour survey, requiring me to rate the show overall. I had a moment of panic, I’ll admit, because you know I don’t do numbers or stars. I was asked to consider elements of the production, including “community engagement”, and I wonder how effective this feedback is, in terms of influencing decisions during the artists’ next free-flowing creative session (or next forced funding application submission session). I’d love to see this sort of immediate response recorded by other companies, perhaps in addition to the gloss and fuss of some of the vox pop productions we see on social media. (See below).

 

One of the highlights of Sweet, Sour & Saucy, despite the segment’s overlong duration, was the re-commitment ceremony afforded a couple in the audience – John and Chris – married 43 years. Barbara played the Celebrant (Barry played the piano), and for the occasion Barbara donned a swirling mass of feathery, sequinned, beaded bright green, the only possible explanation being that the finale was John Paul Young’s Love Is In the Air, made even more famous of course in Strictly Ballroom. The audience participation involved bubble blowing, confetti throwing and a random tango demonstration from a keen couple in the audience. Fun! There was actual tangible love and joy in the air, y’all!

 

Barbara and Barry effortlessly facilitated some of the most enjoyable moments the Judy has seen in a long time and I hope we see them “on air” again soon! In fact, we demand it! Bring back Barbara and Barry!

 

09
Dec
13

Woodford Folk Festival’s iWoodford app

 

iWoodford app

Available in iTunes

Launched December 1 2013

 

Reviewed by Xanthe Coward

 

woodford2013_poster_closeup

I’m no techie but I love my apps! And one that looks pretty and proves super easy to use to help me get organised for our massive week at Woodford Folk Festival is a winner. Finally, after years of other developers making half-hearted attempts to build something, our awesome friends in Maleny decided to give it a shot and they’ve come up with a good looking, user-friendly, efficient app that means we can plan our entire week around The Mystery Bus shifts (yes, even Poppy has to work! She is meeting and greeting the artists this year), and not miss a thing.

 

I created My Program for our week at Woodford using iWoodford, developed by Kris Randall, Angel Goulter, Jule Rebeiro and Jimmy Halliday. I knew it would be good because these guys are old Woodfordians. Well, you know, they’re not THAT old, but they’ve certainly done their time at Woodford (Folk Festival!). These guys know Woodfordia well, and by sharing it via iWoodford, they’re hoping to make the whole experience easier.

 

It took me a little while to get to it though, because Poppy (seven years old) had to trial it and put her events in first. She browsed the Children’s Festival program and clicked “Add to My Program” without any tricky questions for me (phew!) – no worries. When she finally handed back the iPhone I re-read the artist bios for those who sounded unfamiliar and made sure I won’t miss Half Moon Run and Matt Corby by clicking “Add to My Program”. Now, Poppy and I are not able to save separate programs for this year but that’s okay because we’ll stick together at the Festival! Instead of stopping and having to flick through the book this year, Poppy will be able to tell me, “Check out My Program, Mum, so you know when to meet me at the Children’s Festival!”

 

The List of Artists and List of Venues provide details that are included in the printed program, and there’s a handy Shopping List on the Festival Shop page so I can make a note of the artists whose merch I want to take home with me. We’ve learned in the past to pick up our favourite CDs as soon as we see them…or we miss out!

 

Once we’re on site we can mark our campsite on the Woodfordia map (Mark Campsite), and then we can locate our campsite (Find Campsite). There’s a nifty Torch feature too, so we don’t trip over tent pegs and guy ropes in the night. We’ll see how it measures up to iTorch!

 

Within the map feature, we can click on a venue and bring up the details of the events. This is especially useful for Poppy, who can check out what’s happening in her favourite spaces, including the Big Ideas tent in the Children’s Festival. It’s just a brief blurb on each venue, which gives you an idea of what to add to your program from the venues or artists lists, or right underneath the blurb within each day’s program of events. While there are no food stalls marked on the map, you’ll find and remember your faves. We love the ice-cold rose slushies just up the road from our venue, run by Sunshine Reparatory Theatre (SRT) – That’s right! Believe the rumours!

 

 

It’s the last year of The Mystery Bus so come say HI!

 

 

If you haven’t been to Woodford Folk Festival before, the map won’t give you close-ups or direct you through the Festival site…yet! You’re going to have to get your bearings when you get there, and you will, very quickly. It’s a massive, big, busy village but it becomes familiar after the first hour or so on site.

 

With iWoodford at your fingertips you can get around without that big printed program in your bag, and with the confidence that you’re headed in the right direction at the right time to catch your favourite artists and workshops at Woodford Folk Festival, as well as a whole host of new entertainers and speakers you’ll be delighted to discover. Get the iWoodford app before you go and with it, get to do and see more at Woodfordia.

 

 

Download iWoodford in iTunes for just $2.99

 

 

 

iwoodford_win

 

Got feedback? The iWoodford app builders welcome all feedback! The best feedback will win but be quick because the comp closes tonight! Score a free season ticket to Woodford Folk Festival by providing your suggestion for next year’s app. Download NOW

30
Dec
12

Woodford Folk Festival: Day 2

Hey! We’re back! Well, for a little while. So while I can, I’ll tell you what’s been happening out here. Day Two was HOT! DAMN HOT! Despite the oppressive heat and the sudden storm on Friday, the Woodford Spirit was – is – alive and well! The Mystery Bus is a busy little hive of activity and on Friday we were graced with the presence of some amazing artists.

Charlie Mgee

Penelope Swales

Emma Louise

The Good Ship

Hailey Calvert

Mustard Courage

Darren Percival

Penelope Swales told me a story about meeting Johnny Depp in the showers back at camp…that’s right! If you’re out here you will have seen him getting about, looking just like Captain Jack Sparrow. As it turns out, he’s on some team that comes to fix things. When Penelope reported a leak in the bathroom, as you do when you’re at Woodford because everyone is responsible for the state of the place, Penelope came face to face with Jack Sparrow, when he jumped off the back of a truck with tools at the ready! Is that not every girl’s dream come true?!

During the middle of the day, which is anytime after 8am and before 3pm, the heat is pretty harsh. For some, it’s unbearable and the best thing for those hippies to do is to hide away in a venue or in the shade with a cold drink. It’s useless heading back to camp during this time. Far better to enjoy a beer at Bill’s Bar – this year’s hottest new venue and after 5pm singles’ hang out – or grab a(nother) fresh fruit smoothie or rose slushie and head to the Village Green. Apart from the bank, The Mystery Bus is the only air conditioned spot so it’s a popular one, despite the un-knowingness surrounding it! As Rachael, from the Sydney Morning Herald has observed, The Mystery Bus is a lottery; it’s pot luck, with a host of headline acts and the audience queuing to see whoever it is on the bus. It’s been such a success for so many years now that it just keeps getting bigger and bigger!

In fact, The Mystery Bus is the favourite gig with so many punters that they come back time and time again. And so do the artists. Darren Percival says that The Mystery Bus IS Woodford Folk Festival. “And that’s all.” On Friday night, Darren rocked the bus with a 20 minute acoustic set. He traded his headdress for a wolf hat and sang, among others, The Mystery Bus song!

IMG_1269

Earlier that afternoon, I took four children between the ages of 6 and 11 to do Mal Webb’s vocal workshop, From Lips to Lung. I met them in the Children’s Festival and with umbrellas held down against the wind and rain into which we walked, we made our way to the Joy Luck Club. Mal Webb is extraordinary and rates highly, fellow vocalists including Darren Percival and Stringmansassy’s Kacey Patrick, who appears in Linsey Pollack’s new show, The Dream of Zedkat Nabu. Mal’s workshops are always terrific fun, especially for the kids, who have been practicing their beat boxing since starting out with Mal.

Mal made an appearance on the bus on Day Three…

30
Nov
12

Auditions: XS, SRT & Free Spirit Entertainment!

 

   

 

XS Entertainment

Suncoast Repertory Theatre

Free Spirit Entertainment

 

are holding combined open auditions

for their 2013-2014 projects

 

Saturdy 15th December 2012

Times available from 10am – 2pm

 

@ Embody Performing Arts in Nambour

 

ACTING AUDITIONS – please prepare a 2 minute monologue

 

DANCE AUDITIONS – please prepare a 2 minute routine

 

SINGING AUDITIONS – please prepare a 2 minute song

 

*You can audition for all 3 if you wish, only one audition time will be required.

 

You may be required to attend a call back at 2:30pm, which will be an open group call back.

We are looking for strong individual performers who are happy to work closely with a fantastic team. 

 

 

To arrange an audition please email –

sam@xsentertainment.com.au

The actual address is 3/131 Currie Street but you access the studio via Howard Street. Turn into the driveway beside the white wall on Howard Street. Embody is in the same building as Civic Video……. 

if all else fails call Sam 0402461062

 

14
May
12

Wonderland, Gremlins & It Plays to Move

Anywhere Theatre Festival 2012

Saturday 12th May

Experienced by Kathryn Rose

Ever heard of a plane being piloted by a loaf of bread – with Gremlins as cabin crew?  Or a play being directed by someone who has never laid eyes on the script?  These are just a few of the bizarre circumstances you could find yourself in during the Anywhere Theatre Festival.

I first heard about this concept when my gorgeous boy, Matt, attended the TEDxBrisbane event in October last year.  He forwarded a recording of a presentation by Paul Osuch talking about the Anywhere Theatre Festival and its aims.

The main objective is to encourage, and provide opportunities for, more people to experience live performances in places other than the traditional theatre complex.  Artists pay to register their act and have it promoted on the Anywhere Theatre website, then get to pocket all the proceeds, thereby cutting out the middleman and hopefully channelling more remuneration to the actual performers.

Matt and I started our Anywhere Theatre experience on Saturday in Brisbane’s Queen Street Mall with Wonderland, a cirque-type act with a group of very talented young people. This free performance was very much appreciated by the large group of shoppers who stopped to have a look.

From there it was off to a very different venue in Auchenflower – the lounge room of Mark Theodossiou, an actor, producer and director from Australian Actors Network.  Due to circumstances beyond their control, Matt and I were the only audience members for that session.  But the show must go on (and we’d paid our $22!), so Mark and Michelle explained the concept of their performance.  We were offered the choice of four two-hander scripts and asked to choose the style and direction of delivery we wanted from our actors.  We had to nominate which actor would play each role and the emotion or motivational features we wanted from the characters.  We had a lot of fun watching Mark’s character, Linus, being besotted with the recorded voice on Linus’ mobile phone in Ma Belle. For the second selection I asked them to perform the play, Jammed, conventionally first then we mixed it up with some challenges for our capable actors. At the end, both actors said they really enjoyed my direction (I bet they say that to ALL the girls!).

After a leisurely dinner at Southbank, we continued our adventure and headed to a rather seedy part of Woolloongabba, where The Gremlins were performing.  The ‘venue’ was an enclosed area at the front of the Reverse Garbage warehouse, with a motley assortment of chairs arranged in rows.  We handed over our $12 each and collected our ‘boarding passes’ for the inaugural flight of the Gromlot family’s new budget airline. At 7pm we were all ushered into our barely-half-completed plane where our hosts proceeded to entertain us with pure escapist, joyful nonsense that had us rolling around laughing.  Because Matt had previously seen The Gremlins perform at Woodford, he had high expectations – and they definitely didn’t disappoint.

The Anywhere Theatre Festival is a wonderful mixture of random, artistic and highly-creative acts that is sure to catch on further around the world.  Let’s hope the Sunny Coast embraces this concept as well; the possibilities are endless!

Ed’s note: See the final performance of EPIPHANY by 2Muse Productions on Saturday 19th at 5pm at the Sunshine Coast School of Photography, Yandina.

Featuring Korean performance artists, well-known to Brisbane indie audiences, Younghee Park and Pak Hoyoung, with Mary Eggleston and seven young Sunshine Coast actors, this is a re-imagining of the production we saw last year. With funding to support the community development goals and the time to explore a few brand new plot points, it’s a very different show and well worth a (second) look. Incorporating effective AV elements (Sue Davis, Judy Barrass, Julia Dawson & James Muller), an evocative soundscape (Eggleston & Bruce Hamilton) and live musical accompaniment by popular Sunshine Coast entertainer, Simon Russell-Baker, EPIPHANY is a fine example of what an independent company can do with limited resources and limitless imagination, blurring the lines between training and entertaining and providing opportunities for young artists to develop their craft alongside professional performers without having to leave the beautiful Sunshine Coast!

EPIPHANY is a whimsical, magical, fantastical tale, which you’ll relate to if you’ve ever wished you could escape your current reality. Escape once more on Saturday 19th May. 




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