Posts Tagged ‘Sydney

19
Aug
14

Patyegarang

 

Patyegarang

QPAC & Bangarra Dance Theatre

QPAC Playhouse

August 15–23 2014

 

Reviewed by Ruth Ridgway

 

patyegarang

 

“The more time I spent contemplating Patyegarang, her courageousness and generosity of spirit, the deeper the importance I felt for Bangarra to awaken her spirit at this time and share this distinctive story from her perspective as an Eora woman.”

Stephen Page

 

In Bangarra Dance Theatre’s latest work, Patyegarang, choreographer and Artistic Director Stephen Page honours the Eora people of the Sydney area, and commemorates their experience of early contact with European settlers. Bangarra’s headquarters is on Eora land.

 

Patyegarang explores the story of the relationship between a young Eora woman of that name, and Lieutenant William Dawes, an English officer who arrived in Australia in 1788.

 

patyegarang2

 

While the story and its context are presented in an impressionistic style in 14 short sections, the threads and themes are clear — a tribute to the significant contribution by dramaturg Alana Valentine, acknowledged by Stephen Page.

 

We see the special status that Patyegarang has among her people, the Eora women’s daily tasks of fishing and food gathering, the people’s use of boats, and the preparation for the hunt.

 

Patyegarang meets Dawes, who is trying to understand his unfamiliar surroundings, and she explains and names different elements, including constellations in the night sky. This is subtly done: Patyegarang focuses her attention and movement on the different elements and Dawes observes, follows and joins her.

 

patyegarang3

In other sections of the work, we see the despairing Eora people in drab European clothing, suffering from illness, and men being shot by European soldiers. In one scene, Dawes wipes white ochre dust off a young man, and Patyegarang cleans black body paint off a young woman — both revealing the same colour skin underneath in a message affirming a common humanity.

 

The interactions between Patyegarang (Jasmin Sheppard) and Dawes (guest dancer Thomas Greenfield) are tender and full of goodwill, except at the end where they confront the fact that they belong to opposing worlds. They part with sadness, but the work finishes with an affirmation of the Eora people’s connection with the land, and a re-honouring of Patyegarang.

 

Sheppard is a gentle Patyegarang, while also conveying the character’s power and courage as a “chosen messenger” of her people. Her movements are rounded, and she skims her feet over the floor as she walks, as if feeling the earth. Greenfield, too, while a tall and commanding presence, has a gentle quality as well as great strength.

 

Waangenga Blanco and Elma Kris as Eora leaders or elders added another dimension of spiritual power and authority to the cast. Blanco, leading the men in dance, was very strong and intense, in perfect command of the grounded traditional movement, with body upright, knees bent and legs swivelling.

 

Kris’s trance-like entrance near the beginning and end of the work, bent over with a smoking wooden coolamon on her back, brings spiritual support and guidance. She leads the women as they gather around Patyegarang, carrying leafy branches and coolamons issuing resin-scented smoke.

 

Smoke, ochre, dust, and body paint are just some elements of the immersive sensory experience of this work. Composer David Page, and the designers — Jacob Nash (set), Jennifer Irwin (costumes) and Nick Schlieper (lighting) — have created another world.

 

The set recreates a towering sandstone cliff, with the lighting changing its colour and the depth of its shadows as it moves from the rose of dawn to daylight, and to night. In the depiction of their traditional lives, the women wear beautiful costumes: ruched and tucked earth-coloured dresses with string backs; skirts like woven string nets in various colours, inverted over the head to resemble woven fish traps; and pleated shimmery black and silver skirts and scarf tops in a night scene.

 

patyegarang4

Singing, chanting, and instrumental music are mixed with bird calls and other sounds of the natural world in the musical soundtrack. We also hear Darug, the traditional language of the Eora people, as if spoken by Patyegarang. This is a poignant connection: as pointed out in the program notes, the rediscovered record of her language in Dawes’s notebooks was a gift of cultural knowledge back to her people 200 years later.

 

Stephen Page’s intention of honouring the Eora people is more than realised in this beautiful, absorbing and inspiring work that invokes the spirit of Patyegarang. What ultimately happened to her is unknown, but part of her story has been brought back to life.

 

 

“May the resonance of her potent story open our hearts and inspire our minds to imagine a collaborative, future Australia.”

Stephen Page

 

 

 

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30
Jun
13

Missing Idina Menzel

Well, I’ve missed Idina Menzel live in concert.

 

I’m not sure how that happened.

 

Sometimes I have moments of common sense and self-preservation, and I remember thinking months ago, “You will have just finished The Noosa Long Weekend, moved house, seen three other shows the same week, made three deadlines, kept up with washing, shopping, meals and a marriage, AND have Poppy home for the holidays. You can’t possibly get to Idina as well!” And I was right. I saw all your tweets and pics and status updates instead and I’M HAPPY FOR YOU! I am, truly. I’m grateful to see so much as it is. What a momentous and very special event you’ve been a part of!

 

AND some of you got to meet Idina, have her sign your Grimmerie, AND SING WITH HER! THAT’S RIGHT! OMG!

 

Eloise Mueller. Image by Cade Mooney

We are so proud of our lovely friend Eloise Mueller, who hails from the Sunshine Coast and is well on her way to perform in all the world’s greatest venues.

 

Well, NOW THAT SHE’S SUNG WITH IDINA AT THE OPERA HOUSE THERE’S NO STOPPING HER!

 

 

Actually, there was never any stopping her

 

And she nailed it, look! AMAZING!

 

 

 

WERE YOU THERE? AND DID YOU ALSO SEE KRISTEN CHENOWETH?

 

I’d love to know about your night with IDINA AND/OR KRISTEN! Let us know about your experience in the comments below. Who’s next on your Must-See List?

 

 

 

07
Nov
12

Rumour Has It: Sixty Minutes Inside Adele

Rumour Has It: Sixty Minutes Inside Adele

 

Rumour Has It: Sixty Minutes Inside Adele

Brisbane Cabaret Festival

Stockholm Syndrome 

2nd & 3rd November 2012

  

Reviewed by Xanthe Coward

 

The Adele Effect

                                                                                                                    

“I just wanna make music…” Adele

 

Naomi Price Adele

Look, I didn’t disclose it before but Naomi Price is a friend of mine. And I don’t mind telling you, without any bias at all, that she is one of a kind. The girl is gorgeous, creative, clever and funny; she possesses an incredible voice and a versatility that means we’ll see her forever, Meryl Streep or Madonna style, and she is humble and hard working. Also, she’s met Cate Blanchett and frequently wears fabulous shoes that I covet, so it goes without saying really, that I’m a big fan.

 

Naomi’s new show, Rumour Has It: Sixty Minutes Inside Adele is exactly that. It’s sixty superb minutes of alternative pop star, Adele, from the inside out, guts and gags and all.

 

Respectfully donning a fat suit rather than a couple of pairs of Spanx, with trademark red hair on fire – this time it’s flaming, cascading locks by Dextress Hair Face Body – Naomi Price steps out of herself to become Adele before our very eyes…and ears. The voice is pure – no gravelly after-effect of smoker’s vocal damage here – and at the same time, it’s near enough to have us captivated and completely convinced. At times we hear a little vocal fry and the recognisable catches, cries, snags and sobs, as well as THAT LAUGH… but this is not just Adele. This is Naomi Price channelling Adele and it’s much more interesting.

 

Rumour Has It is the upbeat opening number, immediately engaging the full house (everyone is still sober so everyone can get the claps in!), and introducing us to the prowess of musicians, Michael Manikus and Jason McGregor, and the charms and extraordinary vocal versatility of Luke Kennedy, who sings backup, having received charts for the songs only a week before the gig. These guys make a tight outfit and they work seamlessly together to take Adele through her many hits. The next is Rolling in the Deep and it is during this number that we realise we weren’t mistaken; we’ve seen the mannerisms of Adele, her every gesture. And then we hear the speaking voice; it’s the Tottenham accent that baffled America when Adele spoke at the Grammys. The mimicry continues through razor sharp patter, which is co-written by Adam Brunes; it draws from the crowd delighted hoots, whoops and more laughter than I’ve heard from a single audience in a long time. With the additional brilliance of Brunes, known particularly for his marketing savvy at La Boite Theatre Company, the references to Adele’s upbringing, boyfriends and brand new baby boy are backed up by loads of research and the gags are genuinely funny. This is a show that would barely need recontextualising in order to achieve global success.

 

Naomi Price Adele

Outside of the patter, the songs are not so smile inducing. Well, c’mon, the woman’s written a heap of lyrics about “rubbish relationships” (actually, she says everybody assumes she’s miserable so she’s going to stop singing about failed relationships), and Naomi perfectly captures the heartbreak. Not during Someone Like You, as one might expect, as this is ingeniously re-appropriated late in the show into a tongue in cheek medley, comprised of My Heart Will Go On, Love on Top and Rehab (these are performed over three vamps and patter segments, showcasing Naomi’s potential to tour next, among other personalities, a Celine Dion cabaret cum tribute show), but during Turning Tables and Don’t You Remember. Now that’s a whole lotta’ heartbreak and heavy heartache right there. PURE PAIN. And Naomi nails it; we feel every pinch and scratch and below the belt punch in the guts. Again, the body language and gesture help us to take the journey; with head thrown back and hands out as if to steady herself, we are mesmerised by her Adele. Instead of destroying us completely by continuing down the same sad path, however, Naomi just as suddenly gives us her best Spice Girls impersonation in a Chasing Pavements mash-up. You have to see this number to believe it!

 

During interval the intimate space upstairs at Stockholm Syndrome becomes a hive of activity, as friends and industry types mingle and collectively rave; a sure sign that the Brisbane arts scene is alive and well, and that its community is flourishing and enjoying supporting one another more than ever. Also, that this show is a sure thing. It’s pleasing to note that nobody is faking the rave.

 

We come back from interval to more champagne and more surprises. Luke Kennedy gives us his rendition of Gotye’s Somebody That I Used to Know. Honestly, Kennedy is the whitest black chick since Christina Aguilera and I’d like to see him do his own show next!

 

Following the aforementioned medley, featuring the hilarious Celine Dion impersonation, the perfectly poignant finish is Make You Feel My Love. Naomi induces smiles through tears and leaves everybody wanting more. I’m sure Naomi Price has what other performers wish they could get in a bottle, and what discerning audience members wish was more prevalent on our television screens. She’s a polished performer, bringing a whole lotta’ sass and her own style to the scene.

 

And it’s a tough scene. Cabaret is hard to pull off, y’all! To get the right blend of fun, self-deprecating humour, pathos and pure talent together to convincingly portray (and poke a little fun at) a woman like Adele is testament to The Little Red Company’s ability to break into the country’s cabaret scene with relative ease.

 

Rumour Has It: Sixty Minutes Inside Adele is set to propel Naomi Price on the meteoric rise to fame we’ve all been expecting, if only she can get it seen outside of Australia. With the contacts she and Brunes have between them, I daresay that day (or lively night) is not far away. Meanwhile, for those of you in Sydney and Melbourne, your chance to spend sixty minutes inside Adele is next!

 

Rumour Has It Slide

 

25
Sep
12

Helpmann Award Winners

2012 Helpmann Awards

Congrats to all nominees and winners of the 2012 Helpmann Awards!

 

 

 

Best New Australian Work
Paul Capsis, Julian Meyrick and Hilary Bell
Production/Event
Angela’s Kitchen
Presenter(s)
Griffin Theatre Company
Best International Contemporary Concert
Prince, presented by Van Egmond Group and Chugg Entertainment
Production/Event
Prince Welcome 2 Australia
Presenter(s)
Prince, presented by Van Egmond Group and Chugg Entertainment
Best Regional Touring Production
Big hART, created with the Namatjira family
Production/Event
Namatjira
Presenter(s)
Big hART, created with the Namatjira family
Best Musical
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre
Production/Event
A Chorus Line
Presenter(s)
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre
Best Opera
State Opera of South Australia
Production/Event
Moby Dick
Presenter(s)
State Opera of South Australia
Best Ballet or Dance Work
Presented by DV8 Physical Theatre and Sydney Opera House Co-produced with Théâtre de la Ville and Festival d’Automne, Paris, National Theatre of Great Britain and Dansens Hus Stockholm.
Production/Event
Can We Talk About This?
Presenter(s)
Presented by DV8 Physical Theatre and Sydney Opera House Co-produced with Théâtre de la Ville and Festival d’Automne, Paris, National Theatre of Great Britain and Dansens Hus Stockholm.
Best Play
Presented by Back To Back Theatre, Malthouse Theatre and Melbourne Festival
Production/Event
Ganesh Versus the Third Reich
Presenter(s)
Presented by Back To Back Theatre, Malthouse Theatre and Melbourne Festival
Best Comedy Performer
Tim Minchin
Production/Event
Tim Minchin vs The Orchestras Round II
Presenter(s)
Fox in the Snow
Best Cabaret Performer
Meow Meow
Production/Event
Little Match Girl
Presenter(s)
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution
Best Original Score
David Page and Steve Francis
Production/Event
Belong
Presenter(s)
Bangarra Dance Theatre
Best Direction of a Play
Benedict Andrews
Production/Event
Gross und Klein (Big and Small)
Presenter(s)
Sydney Theatre Company
Best Visual or Physical Theatre Production
CIRCA
Presenter(s)
Circa
Best Symphony Orchestra Concert
Sydney Symphony
Production/Event
Evgeny Kissin Plays Chopin
Presenter(s)
Sydney Symphony
Best Direction of a Musical
Roger Hodgman
Production/Event
Grey Gardens
Presenter(s)
The Production Company
Best Presentation for Children
Terrapin Puppet Theatre
Production/Event
Boats
Presenter(s)
Terrapin Puppet Theatre
Best Australian Contemporary Concert
Kylie Minogue and The Frontier Touring Company
Production/Event
Kylie Aphrodite Les Folies Tour 2011
Presenter(s)
Kylie Minogue and The Frontier Touring Company
Best Music Direction
Iain Grandage
Production/Event
Little Match Girl
Presenter(s)
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution
Best Contemporary Music Festival
Museum of Old and New Art
Production/Event
MONA FOMA
Presenter(s)
Museum of Old and New Art
Best Male Actor in a Play
Paul Capsis
Production/Event
Angela’s Kitchen
Presenter(s)
Griffin Theatre Company
Best Choreography in a Musical
Kelly Devine
Production/Event
Rock of Ages
Presenter(s)
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert
Musica Viva Australia
Production/Event
Tafelmusik ‘The Galileo Project: Music of the Spheres’
Presenter(s)
Musica Viva Australia
Best Choreography in a Dance or Physical Theatre Work
Stephen Page
Production/Event
ID from Belong
Presenter(s)
Bangarra Dance Theatre
Best Female Actor in a Play
Cate Blanchett
Production/Event
Gross und Klein (Big and Small)
Presenter(s)
Sydney Theatre Company
Best Direction of an Opera
Leonard Foglia
Production/Event
Moby Dick
Presenter(s)
State Opera of South Australia
Best Male Actor in a Musical
Mitchell Butel
Production/Event
The Mikado
Presenter(s)
Opera Australia
Best Costume Design
Toni Maticevski and Richard Nylon
Production/Event
Aviary: A Suite for the Bird
Presenter(s)
Phillip Adams BalletLab in Melbourne Festival 2011
Best Male Dancer in a Dance or Physical Theatre Work
Paul White
Production/Event
Anatomy of an Afternoon
Presenter(s)
Martin del Amo, Performing Lines and Sydney Festival
Best Female Dancer in a Dance or Physical Theatre Work
Charmene Yap
Production/Event
2 One Another
Presenter(s)
Sydney Dance Company
Best Male Performer in an Opera
Anthony Dean Griffey
Production/Event
Of Mice & Men
Presenter(s)
Opera Australia
Best Male Actor in a Supporting Role in a Play
Bob Hornery
Production/Event
The Importance of Being Earnest
Presenter(s)
Melbourne Theatre Company
Best Scenic Design
Brian Thomson
Production/Event
La Traviata
Presenter(s)
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour
Best Female Actor in a Musical
Pamela Rabe
Production/Event
Grey Gardens
Presenter(s)
The Production Company
Best Lighting Design
Paul Jackson
Production/Event
Little Match Girl
Presenter(s)
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution
Best Female Actor in a Supporting Role in a Play
Robyn Nevin
Production/Event
Summer of the Seventeenth Doll
Presenter(s)
Belvoir
Best Male Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical
Bert LaBonte
Production/Event
An Officer and a Gentleman
Presenter(s)
Sharleen Cooper Cohen, John Frost
Best Female Performer in an Opera
Emma Matthews
Production/Event
La Traviata
Presenter(s)
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour
Best Sound Design
Tony David Cray
Production/Event
La Traviata
Presenter(s)
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour
Best Female Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical
Nancye Hayes
Production/Event
Grey Gardens
Presenter(s)
The Production Company
Best Male Performer in a Supporting Role in an Opera
Grant Doyle
Production/Event
Moby Dick
Presenter(s)
State Opera of South Australia
Best Female Performer in a Supporting Role in an Opera
Orla Boylan
Production/Event
Elektra
Presenter(s)
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia
Best Individual Classical Performance
Evgeny Kissin
Presenter(s)
Presented by Sydney Symphony and Brisbane Festival
Best Special Event
La Traviata
Production/Event
Opera Australia
Presenter(s)
Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour
Best Special Event
Lotterywest Festival Celebration: Place Des Anges by Les Studios De Cirque
Production/Event
Place Des Anges by Les Studios De Cirque
Presenter(s)
2012 Perth International Arts Festival
 Cate Blanchett
06
Aug
12

The Helpmann Award Nominations 2012

An Officer and a Gentleman

Ben Mingay and Amanda Harrison. Image by Brian Geach.

Thanks to Ashleigh Wilson and The Australian, here is the full list of Helpmann nominees. Now, that’s FAST!

For the first time, the nominations were announced concurrently in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

The List of Nominations in each of the 41 categories for the Helpmann Awards® was announced this evening in Sydney, Melbourne & Brisbane, at the Capitol Theatre, Sydney, Arts Centre, Melbourne and QPAC, Brisbane.  Simon Burke hosted the Announcement Event in Sydney, Bert LaBonte hosted in Melbourne, and Bille Brown AM hosted in Brisbane.

The 2012 Helpmann Awards®Ceremony, the 12th presentation of the Awards, will be held on Monday 24 September at 8pm at the Opera Theatre, Sydney Opera House.

Tickets go on sale to the general public on Tuesday 7 August and can be purchased from the Sydney Opera House Box Office 02 9250 7777 or http://www.sydneyoperahouse.com

www.helpmannawards.com.au

Full list of Helpmann nominees:

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Laurel Frank
Steampowered
Circus Oz

Akira Isogawa
Romeo & Juliet
The Australian Ballet

Tony Maticevski and Richard Nylon

Aviary: A Suite for the Bird
Phillip Adams BalletLab in Melbourne Festival 2011

Tony Tripp and Tracy Grant-Lord
The Importance of Being Earnest
Melbourne Theatre Company

BEST SCENIC DESIGN

Robert Brill
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

Gypsy Taylor
The Red Tree
Barking Gecko Theatre Company

Brian Thomson

La Traviata
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

Tony Tripp
The Importance of Being Earnest
Melbourne Theatre Company

BEST LIGHTING DESIGN

Paul Jackson
Little Match Girl
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution

Paul Jackson
Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

Matthew Marshall
The Red Tree
Barking Gecko Theatre Company

Nick Schlieper
Gross Und Klein (Big and Small)
Sydney Theatre Company

BEST SOUND DESIGN

Tony David Cray
La Traviata
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

Gareth Fry
Kevin Spacey RICHARD III
THE BRIDGE PROJECT, Produced by The Old Vic, BAM & Neal Street, Australian Season presented by Andrew Kay & Liza McLean

Peter Hylenski
Dreamworks How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular
Dreamworks Animation and Global Creatures present How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular

Bryan Worthern
Foo Fighters w/special guests Tenacious D Stadium Tour 2011
The Frontier Touring Company

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

Clint Bracknell, David Salvaire, Dylan Hooper
The Red Tree
Barking Gecko Theatre Company presented by Perth International Arts Festival

Jake Heggie
Moby Dick, State Opera of South Australia

Alan John
The White Guard, Sydney Theatre Company

David Page
Belong, Bangarra Dance Theatre

BEST INDIVIDUAL CLASSICAL MUSIC PERFORMANCE

Matthias Goerne
Matthias Goerne – DieWinterreise
Melbourne Recital Centre

Susan Graham
Susan Graham
Sydney Opera House Presents

Evgeny Kissin
Evgeny Kissin
Presented by Sydney Symphony and Brisbane Festival

Anne-Sophie Mutter
Anne-Sophie Mutter plays Beethoven with the Sydney Symphony
Sydney Symphony

BEST MUSIC DIRECTION

Iain Grandage
Little Match Girl
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution

Ian McDonald
Songs For Nobodies
Melbourne Theatre Company

Richard Mills
Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

Timothy Sexton
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

BEST CHAMBER & INSTRUMENTAL ENSEMBLE CONCERT

KURSK: An Oratorio Requiem
Presented by Melbourne Festival and Melbourne Recital Centre

Syzygy Ensemble – Black Angels
Melbourne Recital Centre

Tafelmusik ‘The Galileo Project: Music of the Spheres’
Musica Viva Australia

Evgeny Kissin
Presented by Sydney Symphony and Brisbane Festival

BEST SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA CONCERT

Master Series 3, 2012
Adelaide Symphony Orchestra

Evgeny Kissin Plays Chopin
Sydney Symphony

Schubert’s Great C Major: Signature Sound
Sydney Symphony

Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony
Australian Chamber Orchestra

BEST INTERNATIONAL CONTEMPORARY CONCERT 

Foo Fighters w/ special guests Tenacious D Stadium Tour 2011
Foo Fighters and The Frontier Touring Company

Prince Welcome 2 Australia
Prince, Van Egmond Group & Chugg Entertainment

Roger Waters’ The Wall Live
Roger Waters and Live Nation Australasia

Sade
Sade and Michael Coppel Presents

BEST REGIONAL TOURING PRODUCTION

Julius Caesar
Bell Shakespeare

Namatjira
Big hART

Africa
My Darling Patricia, Marguerite Pepper Productions, Performing Lines. A Malthouse Theatre commission

Rainbow’s End
Riverside Productions

BEST CONTEMPORARY MUSIC FESTIVAL

Future Music Festival National Tour
Future Entertainment

MONA FOMA
Museum of Old and New Art

Bluesfest 2012
Peter Noble

Vivid Live 2011
Sydney Opera House Presents

BEST AUSTRALIAN CONTEMPORARY CONCERT

Cold Chisel Light The Nitro Tour
John Watson Management & John O’Donnell

Keith Urban – ‘Get Closer’ 2011 World Tour
Keith Urban and Chugg Entertainment

Kylie Anti-Tour B-Sides Demos Rarities 2012
Kylie Minogue and The Frontier Touring Company

Kylie Aphrodite Les Folies Tour 2011
Kylie Minogue and The Frontier Touring Company

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY IN A DANCE OR PHYSICAL THEATRE PRODUCTION

Phillip Adams
Aviary: A Suite for the Bird
Phillip Adams BalletLab in Melbourne Festival 2011

Danielle Micich
Driving Into Walls
Barking Gecko Theatre Company

Lloyd Newson
Can We Talk About This?
DV8 presented by Sydney Opera House

Stephen Page
ID from Belong
Bangarra Dance Theatre

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY IN A MUSICAL

Kelly Aykers
Annie
John Frost, Power Arts, QPAC and Two Left Feet Productions

Michael Bennett
A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Kelly Devine
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Andrew Hallsworth
An Officer and a Gentleman
John Frost, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Power Arts and Chun-Soo Shin

BEST DIRECTION OF A MUSICAL 

Michael Bennett
A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Kristin Hanggi
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Roger Hodgman
Grey Gardens
The Production Company

Simon Phillips

An Officer and a Gentleman
John Frost, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Power Arts and Chun-Soo Shin

BEST DIRECTION OF AN OPERA

Bruce Beresford
Of Mice & Men
Opera Australia

Leonard Foglia
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

Matthew Lutton
Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

Francesca Zambello
La Traviata
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

BEST DIRECTION OF A PLAY

Benedict Andrews
Gross Und Klein (Big and Small)
Sydney Theatre Company

Rachael Maza
Jack Charles V The Crown
Ilbijerri Theatre Company

Simon Phillips
Songs For Nobodies
Melbourne Theatre Company

Sam Strong
The Boys
Griffin Theatre Company

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MUSICAL

Euan Doidge
A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Brent Hill
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Bert LaBonte
An Officer and a Gentleman
John Frost, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Power Arts and Chun-Soo Shin

Todd McKenney
Annie
John Frost, Power Arts, QPAC and Two Left Feet Productions

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MUSICAL

Francine Cain
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Nancye Hayes
Grey Gardens
The Production Company

Debora Krizak
A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Tara Morice
FAT SWAN – An Adults Only Panto
Showqueen Productions

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A PLAY

Patrick Brammall
Clybourne Park
Melbourne Theatre Company

Bob Hornery
The Importance of Being Earnest
Melbourne Theatre Company

Alex Menglet
Julius Caesar
Bell Shakespeare

Trevor Stuart
As You Like It
La Boite Theatre Company

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A PLAY

Justine Clarke
Les Liaisons Dangereuses
Sydney Theatre Company

Kris McQuade
Neighbourhood Watch
Belvoir

Robyn Nevin
Summer of the Seventeenth Doll
Belvoir

Miranda Otto
The White Guard
Sydney Theatre Company

BEST MALE PERFORMER IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN AN OPERA

James Clayton
The Tales of Hoffmann
West Australian Opera

Conal Coad
The Marriage of Figaro
Opera Australia

Grant Doyle
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

Douglas McNicol
La Fanciulla del West
Opera Queensland

BEST FEMALE PERFORMER IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN AN OPERA

Orla Boylan
Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

Lorina Gore
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

Suzanne Johnston
Albert Herring
Victorian Opera

Dominica Matthews

The Marriage of Figaro
Opera Australia

BEST NEW AUSTRALIAN WORK

Paul Capsis and Julian Meyrick
Angela’s Kitchen
Griffin Theatre Company

David Chisholm
Kursk: An Oratorio Requiem
Melbourne Recital Centre, in association with Melbourne Festival

Marn Deans, Marcia Ferguson, Bruce Gladwin, Nicki Holland, Simon Laherty, Sarah Mainwaring, Scott Price, Kate Sulan, Brian Tilley & David Woods
Ganesh Versus the Third Reich
Malthouse Theatre & Melbourne Festival with a Back to Back Theatre Production

Elena Kats-Chernin
Symphonia Eluvium
Brisbane Festival

Joanna Murray-Smith
Songs For Nobodies
Melbourne Theatre Company

BEST COMEDY PERFORMER

Wil Anderson
Wilarious
Token Events

Judith Lucy
Nothing Fancy
Token Events

Tim Minchin
Tim Minchin vs The Orchestras Round II
Fox in the Snow

Sam Simmons
About The Weather
Token Events

BEST CABARET PERFORMER

Trevor Ashley
Diamonds are for Trevor
Showqueen Productions, Luckiest Productions and Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Meow Meow
Little Match Girl
Malthouse Theatre in association with Meow Meow Revolution

Moira Finucane with Rhonda Burchmore, Deborah Conway, Dei Roten Punkte, Pamela Rabe, Phillip Adams’ BalletLab, Meow Meow, Vika & Linda Bull, Kamahi Djordon King as Constantina Bush & The Bushettes, Sosina Wogayehu and Burlesque Hour artistes Maude Davey, Holly Durant & Harriet Ritchie
Burlesque Hour LOVES Melbourne
Finucane & Smith, with Auspicious Arts & fortyfivedownstairs

Caroline Nin
Caroline Nin – Hymne A Piaf
Melbourne Recital Centre

BEST PRESENTATION FOR CHILDREN

White by Catherine Wheels Theatre Company

Arts Centre Melbourne and Sydney Opera House in partnership with Adelaide Festival Centre,
Windmill Theatre Company and Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre

The Red Tree
Barking Gecko Theatre Company presented by Perth International Arts Festival

Statespeare
Created by shake & stir theatre co

Boats
Terrapin Puppet Theatre

BEST VISUAL OR PHYSICAL THEATRE PRODUCTION

CIRCA
Circa

Raoul
La Compagnie du Hanneton presented by Perth International Arts Festival

The Adventures of Alvin Sputnik: Deep Sea Explorer
Perth Theatre Company presents a Weeping Spoon production

The Man the Sea Saw by Wolfe Bowart
SpoonTree Productions

BEST MALE DANCER IN A DANCE OR PHYSICAL THEATRE PRODUCTION

Waangenga Blanco
Belong
Bangarra Dance Theatre

Daryl Brandwood

HELIX
The HELIX Project

Chen Wen
2 One Another
Sydney Dance Company

Paul White
Anatomy of an Afternoon
Sydney Festival

BEST FEMALE DANCER IN A DANCE OR PHYSICAL THEATRE PRODUCTION

Kirstie McCracken
Double Think
Produced by Force Majeure. Presented by Arts House and Force Majeure in association with Melbourne Festival

Tara Soh
Proximity
Australian Dance Theatre

Brooke Stamp
Aviary: A Suite for the Bird
Phillip Adams BalletLab in the Melbourne Festival 2011

Charmene Yap

2 One Another
Sydney Dance Company

BEST MALE PERFORMER IN AN OPERA

Anthony Dean Griffey
Of Mice & Men
Opera Australia

Jay Hunter Morris
Moby Dick
State Opera of South Australia

Rosario La Spina
Turandot
Opera Australia

Gianluca Terranova
La Traviata
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

BEST FEMALE PERFORMER IN AN OPERA

Rachelle Durkin
The Tales of Hoffmann
West Australian Opera

Susan Foster
Turandot
Opera Australia

Eva Johansson
Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

Emma Matthews
La Traviata
Opera Australia – Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A MUSICAL

Trevor Ashley
FAT SWAN – An Adults Only Panto
Showqueen Productions

Justin Burford
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Mitchell Butel
The Mikado
Opera Australia

Anthony Warlow
Annie
John Frost, Power Arts, QPAC and Two Left Feet Productions

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A MUSICAL

Anita Louise Combe
A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Amanda Harrison
An Officer and a Gentleman
John Frost, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Power Arts and Chun-Soo Shin

Amy Lehpamer
Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Pamela Rabe
Grey Gardens
The Production Company

BEST MALE ACTOR IN A PLAY

Bille Brown
The Histrionic
Malthouse Theatre & Sydney Theatre Company

Paul Capsis
Angela’s Kitchen
Griffin Theatre Company

Jack Charles
Jack Charles V The Crown
Ilbejerri Theatre Company

Colin Friels
Red
Melbourne Theatre Company

BEST FEMALE ACTOR IN A PLAY

Cate Blanchett
Gross Und Klein (Big and Small)
Sydney Theatre Company

Robyn Nevin

Neighbourhood Watch
Belvoir

Bernadette Robinson
Songs For Nobodies
Melbourne Theatre Company

Helen Thomson
Summer of the Seventeenth Doll
Belvoir

BEST BALLET OR DANCE WORK

Aviary: A Suite for the Bird
Phillip Adams BalletLab in Melbourne Festival 2011

MASS
Dancenorth

Anatomy of an Afternoon
Martin del Amo, Performing Lines and Sydney Festival

Can We Talk About This?
DV8 Presented by Sydney Opera House

BEST OPERA

Elektra
A Co-Production of West Australian Opera, ThinIce, Perth International Arts Festival and Opera Australia

The Barbarians
MONA FOMA/IHOS Opera

Moby Dick

State Opera of South Australia

The Rakes Progress

Victorian Opera

BEST PLAY

Neighbourhood Watch
Belvoir

The Boys
Griffin Theatre Company in association with Sydney Festival

Ganesh Versus the Third Reich
Presented by Melbourne Festival, Malthouse Theatre and Back to Back Theatre

The Importance of Being Earnest
Melbourne Theatre Company

BEST MUSICAL 

An Officer and a Gentleman
John Frost, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Power Arts and Chun-Soo Shin

A Chorus Line
Tim Lawson in association with the Adelaide Festival Centre

Rock of Ages
Rodney Rigby and the Rock of Ages Australia Management LLC

Grey Gardens
The Production Company

 

Cate Blanchett Gross und Klein

Cate Blanchett. Image by Lisa Tomasetti.

17
Jun
12

Let the Sunshine

Let the Sunshine

Let The Sunshine

Gardens Theatre

15th – 16th June 2012

Reviewed by Meredith McLean

Since moving to Brisbane I’ve been mostly quiet about my coastie heritage;

Coastie [Coh-stee] noun A person who originates from the Sunshine Coast. Often mistaken for a bogan.

…but I couldn’t help but be a little proud as I laughed at David Williamson’s jabs at the coast. Let The Sunshine is Williamson’s hilarious, satirical play is about two polar opposite couples struggling with their children who have inevitably fallen in love. It’s been described as part Romeo & Juliet, part Meet the Parents. It had me laughing the minute the stage had lit up.

Rick’s parents are a left wing pair played by Toni Scanlan and Dennis Coard. They go by Toby and Ros; Toby’s specialty being documentaries raging against the southeast Queensland coastlines being ruined by development. Emma’s parents on the other hand are Ron and Natasha. Natasha spends her days in gym pants’ getting facials and Ron is a development manager responsible for half the high rises on the Sunshine Coast. The two couples struggle to maintain a healthy state as “frenemies”.

This arrangement seems permanent until Rick and Emma meet at a birthday gathering gone wrong. It’s a case of opposites attract and the rest goes like clockwork from there. The whole concept is a hilarious send-up of some stereotypes that I have to admit isn’t too far off. What stirred in me the most though were the little jabs at Sunshine Coast I couldn’t deny were absolutely true. Noosa and its six-dollar coffees as well as the Sunshine Coast’s club scene or lack there of it had the crowd snickering. But it was the hilarious comments coming out the parents’ stereotypes that have the audience roaring.

The characters of Emma and Rick our star-crossed lovers as it were come off as a little flat. However I find this is no fault of the actors Ryan Hayward and Hannah Norris who do everything they can to make the characters live through the stage. The two-dimensional nature of their characters fall upon Williamson’s shoulders I feel. They are very carved out concepts. Emma, a young lawyer who thinks she wants to achieve but is more or less making the effort for her parents’ approval. Rick, the thirty something failing musician still running on the fuel of his mother and father’s encouragement. They are both truisms of Williamson’s creation.  The platitudes of their psyches, flaws and feelings are nothing new I have come across. But there is hope because we are forgetting this is a satirical comedy. There just isn’t time to develop some deep meaningful pair of lovers before the punch lines hits us. I did take note though of Hannah Norris’s character arc in her role as Emma and how it changes as the play progresses. In a way, character development has been sacrificed for the greater good.

The greater good in question is fantastic. It is projected across the stage and echoed back by the laughter of the audience. The banter of Natasha and Ron, played by Ally Fowler and Peter Phelps respectively, is witty and mocking of many households on the Coast. I must admit I couldn’t help but see a little bit of my own parents in them and found the whole situation even funnier.

Let the Sunshine

The cast as a collective reflects familiar faces. The baby boomer counterparts of the cast have all made a name for themselves through Australian television and overseas. Ryan Hayward and Hannah Norris, our example of opposites attract, have both extensively contributed to theatre down south and internationally.

Having had an interview with Hannah Norris earlier, there were hints that a social message also underlies the jokes in Let The Sunshine. I had been expecting something very singular and straightforward but found flourishes of individual messages are given to the audience behind the sly face of comedy. This isn’t a show parading feminism but it does take note of women in the working environment. It can’t be called a claim for peace but there are references to the summer of love and what that dream means today. This is no meeting for the Greens going on but there are undertones of urbanization and what it means for the Queensland coastlines. You have been warned. This is a satirical comedy and in being such a concept messages are handed to us through the crack of a joke.

It’s not on everyone’s mind I know but I have to say I sighed over the fluidness of the scene changes. For me I get a little shiver of satisfaction when a play runs well. It is never emphasized enough how much a production loses when you notice the stage hands or see the actors bumbling to find their next position. The smooth cog-like manner of Let The Sunshine is a credit to director Denis Moore. Each actor stepping purposely into the shadow then reappearing through another spotlight to signify a transition of scenes without so much as a hiccup between lines gives me goose bumps to watch. Under Moore’s stage direction it’s a clear a working family unit has grown during the rehearsal of this production.

Let The Sunshine is a charming comedy that beguiles the audience with some hilarious actors as well as some cheeky observations. The visuals and the dialogue leave the audience chuckling in their seats. Many times even clapping mid-scene. I hope you were able to catch it during this brief Brisbane visit.


11
May
12

A Message from Queenie van de Zandt

If you’re in Sydney for Mother’s Day you may like to get to THIS!

Be quick, it’s almost SOLD OUT!

And a message for Brissie friends before next Friday’s show at the Judith Wright Centre.

Are you on Queenie’s cyber mailing list? You’d better be!

 

Hi Brissie Gang…

Ok – below is the poster with all the low-down on the go-down on Friday. A guy called “Prince” is doing his show on the same night…but he’s only a prince – and I’m a fucking Queen…

On that – because you are on my ‘cyber-mailing list’ you get cheepo tix to my gig…(bet Prince whatever his name is doesn’t do that…). 

So if you mention the word “Prince” when booking your tix – you can get tix at the concession rate instead of paying full price.

I hope to see lots and lots of you there!


Q: What do a woman masturbating in the audience while you’re singing on stage AND getting verbal diarrhoea when meeting Olivia Newton John have in common?

A: THEY BOTH HAPPENED TO QUEENIE VAN DE ZANDT.


Ever since she pulled on her ABBA socks at age eight, Queenie van de Zandt knew she was destined to become a performer (or hairdresser). Her mind, and face, made up, she plunged into the shady world of eisteddfods, speech and drama exams and school musicals. At 18, Queenie finally got her “big break” at a cabaret venue in the theatrical epicentre of… Queanbeyan.

Thus began 21 years of bizarre theatrical experiences ranging from performing on the stages of Asia with some of the great actors of our time, to accidentally pooping herself in a performance of HAIR. Yes ladies and gentlemen, this right regal star of the stage has seen and done it all.

Don’t miss a night of hilarious anecdotes, insightful observations and beautiful songs from one of Australia’s best-loved cabaret and musical theatre stars!