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Lindy Hume on opera’s existential crisis, opportunities, and sexism

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

The last five years have been a particularly difficult and unusual period in the opera world, with both Australian and international companies facing huge financial pressure and apparently dwindling audiences. That situation has made for a challenging few years for Lindy Hume, who has been Artistic Director of Opera Queensland from 2012, and is stepping down from the role

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Cancelled music theatre festival leaves leading opera singers seeking payment in court

Musicals, News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

The inaugural Melbourne Musical Theatre Festival launched late last year, with a program of concerts and stagings of full-length musicals at the Athaeneum Theatre. It had lofty ambitions of evolving into “THE major Musical Theatre Festival in the world.” The centrepiece of the festival was to be Some Enchanted Evening, a concert of Rodgers and Hammerstein music, starring leading

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Will private philanthropy save the arts in Australia? Survey reveals extraordinary growth


The Australian Major Performing Arts Group has today released the results of its annual philanthropy survey, showing that income from donations, corporate sponsorship, and fundraising to our major performing arts companies grew by 15.2 per cent in 2016. The survey showed revenue from these private streams grew by $12.6 million to a total of $95.7 million from

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Opera Australia launches 2018 season with stark gender inequality

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

Opera Australia’s 2018 season might feature some of the biggest roles written for female opera singers– including Tosca, Aida, Carmen, and La Traviata’s Violetta — but the vast majority of creative roles in the season will be filled by men. Just 23 of the 138 creative roles listed in the brochures for the upcoming Melbourne and Sydney season are

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The Rape of Lucretia review (Sydney Chamber Opera, Carriageworks)

Opera, Reviews, Stage |

There’s a lot happening in composer Benjamin Britten and librettist Ronald Duncan’s curious 1946 opera The Rape of Lucretia, and even more happening in director Kip Williams’ production for Sydney Chamber Opera. At the core of the opera is the story of Lucretia (Anna Dowsley) and her attacker Tarquinius (Nathan Lay), and the sexual assault which played

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Opera Australia reveals 2018 Sydney season, returning to the Opera House

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

Opera Australia is set to return to its Sydney home, the Opera House’s Joan Sutherland Theatre, after extensive renovations has kept the company out of the theatre for most of 2017. Several of the company’s most popular productions will return during 2018, alongside Barrie Kosky’s production of Shostakovich’s The Nose, which premiered at Covent Garden last year, and a

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Brett Dean’s Hamlet opera will have its Australian premiere at Adelaide Festival

News & Commentary, Opera, Stage |

Following its success this year with Barrie Kosky’s production of Saul, Adelaide Festival has announced another large-scale opera to open next year’s festival. Australian composer Brett Dean’s new operatic version of Hamlet will have its Australian debut next March, directed by Adelaide Festival’s Joint Artistic Director Neil Armfield. The opera had its world premiere in June at the UK’s Glyndebourne Festival

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Helpmann Awards: local vs foreign artists, and the other big talking points


Last night’s Helpmann Awards were thoroughly endured by all in attendance. The ceremony, which recognises live performance in almost every form (from ballet, to contemporary music, to stand-up comedy, to opera, to musical theatre), is typically a marathon event. Thankfully, the ceremony ran pretty much to time (three hours, straight through), and there were some

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Helpmann Award Winners 2017: full list


Barrie Kosky’s production of Saul, which had its Australian premiere at Adelaide Festival, has dominated this year’s Helpmann Awards, picking up six awards, including Best Direction of an Opera and Best Opera. The winners of the awards were revealed tonight at a ceremony at Sydney’s Capitol Theatre. Leah Purcell’s much-awarded stage adaptation of The Drover’s Wife was a

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