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‘What makes directing worthwhile are the people who you do it with.’ Jane Dempster/AAP. Bell Shakespeare's production of Tartuffe, 2014.

Theatre directing in Australia – some notes from the wings

'Theatre directors come in two kinds: "star" and "of use". I'm in the latter category, which means that, for any given play, there are at least three or four other directors who could do it equally well.'
We need to consider what balance we want to achieve between the heritage and contemporary arts. AAP Image/Julian Smith. Artists of the Australian Ballet rehearse for the The Dream.

Majors and the majority: planning for Australia’s artistic legacy starts now

Given the pressure being applied to the majority of people working in the arts sector, we would be foolish not to consider the roles and inherited rights of Australia's major performing companies.
Sophiline Cheam Shapiro (L) in rehearsal with one of the members of the Sophiline Arts Ensemble. Khmer Arts Theater, Takhmao (Kandal Province), Cambodia. June 26, 2015. Photo by Chris Philips

Re-enchanting the world with performing arts: stories from Cambodia

New stories can offer insight on alternative ways of living out our lives. As the experience in Cambodia shows, the performing arts can help us face up to enormous challenges and possibilities.
At its best, opera can, indeed, be a powerful form of allegorical theatre. EPA/Gian Ehrenzeller (Image from Verdi's I due Foscari)

Opera, sexual violence, and the art of telling terrible tales

A gang-rape scene in a new London staging of Rossini's Guillaume Tell was greeted with audience booing, and has sparked ongoing controversy. Are opera directors at risk of miscomprehending the medium?
Stage musicals, such as the Rocky Horror Show, don’t necessarily make sense. Nor do recent changes to arts funding. AAP Image/Paul Miller

We have a ‘show tunes’ government, with an arts policy to match

In cultural policy every good idea becomes a bad one if the context is confused. The fact there wasn’t initial clarity around the Program for Excellence indicates it will probably do more harm than good.
Andrew Bovell’s adaptation of Kate Grenville’s The Secret River is a key example of post-Apology theatre. AAP Image/Heidrun Löhr

Beyond Sorry: colonial oppression on Australian stages

It's been seven years since Kevin Rudd delivered his apology to Indigenous Australians. On Australia's stages dramatists continue to explore the ramifications of that apology and colonial history.
The pantheon of the Bard’s plays is now larger by one – or so the headlines would have you believe. George

Shakespeare’s Double Falsehood? Alas, that’s neither true nor false

You'd be forgiven for thinking Double Falsehood was recently "found" and confirmed as being by Shakespeare. But that's not what the researchers behind the computational tests actually said. So what's up?
Theatre critics are a vital point of mediation between the stage and the audience – and they must do their job with care and discernment. Tom E. Lewis onstage at the Malthouse in 2014. AAP Image/Jeff Busby

Theatre reviewing is a responsible job – and it requires care

Theatre reviewing should be a public judgement pronounced with discernment. So what are we to make of those who do it badly?

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