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Articles on Sydney Festival 2015

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The stunning vocal performance of the Latvian Radio Choir was one of the highlights of the 2015 Sydney Festival. Sydney Festival

Review: Latvian Radio Choir, a full-throated vocal celebration

Swedish director Kay Pollak’s film As It is in Heaven (2004) climaxes at a point of musical bliss which is both chaotic and profoundly unifying. Rather than singing a few polished songs with energy in…
Making a show for kids that’s not going to bore grown-ups a challenge. Prudence Upton/Sydney Festival

Cabaret for kids: Jazzamatazz! at the Sydney Festival

The kids program for Sydney Festival has been fun and varied this year, but a highlight was Ali McGregor’s Jazzamatazz!. The cabaret singer staged her set in the Aurora Room, a mini-Speigeltent with a…
On the Harmful Effects of Tobacco is a marriage between words and music. Pascal Victor/Sydney Festival

Dissonance and relief: Chekhov at the Sydney Festival

At least four metronomes ticked away at various points on the stage as the audience seated itself for last night’s opening performance of Anton Chekhov’s On The Harmful Effects of Tobacco at the Sydney…
UKCHUK-GA: Pansori Mother Courage. JD Woo MG/Sydney Festival

A stunning reworking of Brecht at the Sydney Festival

Bertolt Brecht’s Mother Courage and Her Children (1941) is, alongside Beckett’s Waiting for Godot (1953), the defining dramatic text of post-war European theatre. Few, if any, theatrical images are as…
Hazem Shammas performs in the stage-adaptation of The Tribe in Sydney Festival. Urban Theatre Projects

Q&A with author of The Tribe: Michael Mohammed Ahmad

This week, as part of Sydney Festival’s Bankstown: Live program, Michael Mohammed Ahmad will present a stage-adaptation of his debut novel. The Tribe, published in 2014, tells the story of three generations…
In Wot? No Fish!! Braverman made the theatre into a kind of living room, offering the audience gefilte fish with chrein sauce. Sydney Festival

Every detail counts in Wot? No Fish!! at Sydney Festival

During an artist talk just an hour before performing Wot? No Fish!! on Saturday at the Sydney Festival, English writer/actor Danny Braverman observed that as an artist he seeks “to foreground universals…
Perry Keyes songs about working class life in Sydney’s suburbs aren’t necessarily an easy fit for the festival setting. Photo by Johnny Barker. Sydney Festival

Review: Perry Keyes’ Tales of Sydney’s Western Suburbs

Whenever I approach mass cultural events – especially ones that seem to bear the conceit that they are “higher” and more culturally valuable than, say, a comic book fair – I am reminded of two of the 20th…
Falling Through the Clouds speaks to a future dystopic existence … and then some. Jarrad Seng/Sydney Festival

Review: Falling Through Clouds, a cautionary tale for our times

There is a flock of swallows that swoops low across the clifftop nearby. This kind of joyful flight, that windy rush of ornithological freedom, is at the heart of Perth Theatre Company The Last Great Hunt’s…
Photo: Far From Folsom. Jamie Williams/Sydney Festival

Far From Folsom: resurrecting the spirit of Johnny Cash

Tex Perkins, once upon a time lead singer of The Cruel Sea and Beasts of Bourbon, appears before his Tennessee Four band in a gentle swagger, grabs the chrome microphone, and announces: “Hello, I’m Johnny…
I Guess if the Stage Exploded … a chance to delve into the fundamentally mysterious nature of memory-making. Laura Montag/Sydney Festival

Remember this: startling memory games at the Sydney Festival

There’s a singular kind of hush that comes over an audience when the figure on stage takes off her shoes and steps into a bucket of flour. But this hush is even more apparent as the actor, now flour-footed…
In Darkness and Light, the long tradition of organ music is combined with a visual world created by Australian artist Lynette Wallworth. Sydney Festival

Evoking the sacred: Darkness and Light at the Sydney Festival

The dramatic, temperamental sound of the organ joined with the lush visuals of contemporary video is not an obvious combination. They are brought together in Darkness and Light, a work by two collaborators…
At the forefront of a renaissance of Brazilian pop-samba - and its commercial success - is Seu Jorge. Alisson Sellaro/Flickr

Review: Brazilian star shines – Seu Jorge’s Australian debut

One evening ten years ago I was walking in pouring rain down the streets of Cidade Baixa in downtown Porto Alegre, Brazil. I went into a music store to look around and, to my surprise, the two-storey building…
Kate Mulvaney’s Masquerade is a joyous, poignant adaptation of Kit Williams’ book for children. AAP/Nikki Short

Reaching for the sun: Masquerade at the Sydney Festival

The opening night of Masquerade at the Sydney Opera House last Friday attracted a rather higher number of under-12s than might usually be expected for Australia’s theatre demographic – and it was a delightful…
James Thierrée’s Tabac Rouge - a ghoulish dreamscape “choreodrama” at Sydney Festival. AAP/Paul Miller

Theatre of disarray: Tabac Rouge at the 2015 Sydney Festival

French circus performer and director James Thierrée famously eschews comparison with his grandfather Charlie Chaplin, to whom he bears a conspicuous resemblance. But as he and his troupe stood on stage…

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