Victorian Opera says opera’s future depends on ‘relevance’

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

The National Opera Review was released this week and although the headlines were about its dislike of Opera Australia’s commercial musical activities, it also suggested that Opera Queensland might soon be dumped from the Major Performing Arts Group (28 companies with guaranteed recurrent Australia Council funding) to make way for Victorian Opera. The Victorian Company, now its 11th year of operation — and funded

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Leave opera alone: why it’s time to stop the attack from within the arts industry

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

It took two years to complete, but the National Opera Review ordered by former arts minister, Senator George Brandis, finally delivered its final report this week. Its 118 recommendations set out a clear way forward for our biggest opera companies to solidify their financial positions, and requires them to transform into innovative companies with artistic

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Faith Healer review (Belvoir, Sydney)

Reviews, Stage, Theatre |

There are plenty of things to praise in Belvoir’s new production of Brian Friel’s 1979 play Faith Healer, but there’s one element that comes close to outshining all others: the acting. Between them, Colin Friels, Pip Miller and Alison Whyte deliver the most vital, nuanced and powerful performances I’ve seen in Sydney this year. Across four monologues, the actors explore

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Whatever the National Opera Review says, musicals will still be on the agenda

Musicals, News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

Yesterday the much awaited National Opera Review report made it clear that it didn’t like Opera Australia’s resources going into partnering with commercial producers to stage musicals such as My Fair Lady, The King and I, South Pacific and Anything Goes. “Many musicals offer limited opportunities for operatic artists and, in Sydney, several mainstage opera productions in the Joan Sutherland Theatre

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So, when will Catalyst be wound down?

Music, News & Commentary, Stage, Visual Arts |

Daily Review recently revealed that the Coalition’s arts funding debacle will see its recently introduced Catalyst program be scrapped and most, if not all, the funds returned from the Minister’s department to the Australia Council. The question is not if but when Arts Minister Senator Mitch Fifield will announce the changes. It will happen no matter how the government

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WATCH: Paulini performs I Will Always Love You from The Bodyguard – The Musical

Musicals, News & Commentary, Stage |

It was this week announced that singer and former Australian Idol star Paulini will lead the Australian premiere of The Bodyguard – The Musical, stepping into the role made famous by Whitney Houston in the classic 1992 romantic thriller film. The show opened on London’s West End in 2012, and features some of Whitney Houston’s biggest hits, including I Will

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Sydney Festival 2017 launched: Wesley Enoch fights back for Australian artists with first program

Live, Music, News & Commentary, Stage, Visual Arts |

Wesley Enoch today unveiled his first Sydney Festival as director, putting his signature stamp on the city’s massive summer event by gently shifting the balance of international and local work further in favour of Australian artists. There are still plenty of high profile international works: Sydney Festival gets Simon McBurney’s hit immersive audio/theatrical experience The Encounter just

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David Freeman gives Sydney a ‘silent opera’ worthy of its Opera House

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

As any arts-loving Sydneysider will tell you, ascending the monumental steps to the Sydney Opera House is a pseudo-religious experience. For all our gripes with the building and its shortcomings as a first class opera venue, the grandeur and physical beauty of Danish architect Jørn Utzon’s masterpiece inspires awe and a sense of spirituality. So it’s not surprising

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Brandis’ National Opera Review finally released, recommending Opera Australia’s musicals not be funded

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

Opera Australia’s long-run musicals should no longer receive public funding, Opera Queensland should be put on notice for its status as a major performing arts company, and our opera companies should receive a significant funding boost of $24.1 million. These are amongst the 118 recommendations made in the National Opera Review, established by former Arts

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