KING. Shaun Parker & Company, Sydney, February 28, 2023

Shaun Parker & Company’s work never fails to lodge itself tenaciously in the memory. I think of This Show is About People from 2007, Am I (2016) and Happy as Larry (2013) in particular and KING will be another. It’s not a new piece, having premiered in 2019, but has returned to Sydney appositely as part of WorldPride. Next stop, Europe.  First let’s…

Let’s do the Time Warp. Again.

Nostalgia currently rules at Sydney’s big three commercial theatres, along with a hefty dose of pragmatism. Old favourites are back in relatively modest productions that have been designed to tour. Nothing is settling in for too long, which is undoubtedly a wise move. Who’d be a producer these days? It’s hard enough at the best…

Pinchgut’s Apollo and Dafne now available for streaming

Australian Theatre Live, a streaming service that offers films of local performing arts productions for subscribers to view at home, has just added Pinchgut Opera’s delectable comedy The Loves of Apollo and Dafne to its growing list. ATL is as yet a relatively small service – Apollo and Dafne is the 20th film in its catalogue – but there’s no…

Four Romeos and four Juliets at The Australian Ballet, October and December 2022

The return of John Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet to The Australian Ballet after nearly 20 years is a reminder of how few narrative ballets surpass it for range and complexity. Cranko’s version of Shakespeare’s tragedy, made in 1962 for Stuttgart Ballet, has been in TAB’s repertoire since 1974 and until 2003 was staged relatively regularly. Not all…

Instruments of Dance, The Australian Ballet, Sydney Opera House, November 10, 2022

Australian audiences know Wayne McGregor from Dyad 1929, made in 2009 as part of The Australian Ballet’s Ballets Russes celebration; Chroma, choreographed in 2006 and brought into the repertoire in 2014; and Infra, staged by TAB in 2017 but dating from 2008. Obsidian Tear, the opening work in the Instruments of Dance triple bill, is not that Wayne McGregor. Absent…

Three ballet companies, three distinctive looks in 2023

Australia’s three leading classical companies have released their 2023 programs, each with a distinctive flavour. The Australian Ballet has a deeply glamorous 60thanniversary season, West Australian Ballet’s line-up gratifyingly features a strong list of female choreographers and at Queensland Ballet the premiere of Cathy Marston’s My Brilliant Career will make Brisbane a must in June. Another must…

The Mousetrap, Theatre Royal, Sydney, October 9, 2022

Governments rise and fall. Children grow up to be mothers and then grandmothers. A man steps on the moon. Evolution creates a new version of humankind, the digital native. And serenely The Mousetrap goes on, a resolutely unchanging oasis of certainty in an unpredictable world. It’s a phenomenon that, if not for the COVID-19 pandemic, would have been…

Manon, Queensland Ballet, QPAC, September 28 and 29, 2022

Kenneth MacMillan’s Manon premiered in 1974, not quite a decade after his Romeo and Juliet, and in some ways is the earlier ballet’s dark twin. Each has as its heart young lovers in a hostile environment whose instant attraction to one another ends in tragedy; each has hugely coveted leading roles of the kind that make reputations.  Queensland…