Opera and musical theatre in 2014

MUSICAL theatre in Sydney got a boost in 2014 with the arrival of Hayes Theatre Co. When Darlinghurst Theatre Company won the residency at the lovely new Eternity Playhouse, a group of music-theatre producers collectively known as Independent Music Theatre took over the Darlinghurst’s former premises, a small theatre in Greenknowe Avenue, Potts Point. They…

The year ahead

And coming up in 2014 … LAST year it was easy to point to the events in dance one thought would be unmissable (not so very many) and theatre (vast amounts). Mostly performances and productions delivered pretty much what one thought they would and moments of transcendence were few, but I guess they always are….

2013: a retrospective

Here’s my take on the year’s high points. As many have noted before me, “best” is a useless word when applied to the cornucopia available in the arts. Here are the people and productions that most inspired me. “A SHORT show is a good show,” we all carol (me and my fellow critics) as we…

Giasone

Pinchgut Opera, City Recital Hall, December 5. IT’S no wonder Francesco Cavalli’s Giasone was the hit of 1649, the most performed opera of that year. The bigger mystery is why it’s rarely seen now. Giasone is a rousing, expertly constructed sex comedy that throws in low humour, high drama, a bit of magic and a…

‘A modern oriental fantasy’

Madama Butterfly on Sydney Harbour, 2014 IN April Michaela Boland, a senior arts reporter for The Australian, tweeted that NSW arts minister George Souris – he is also minister for tourism, major events, hospitality and racing – had confirmed Madama Butterfly as next year’s Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour. I don’t think he was supposed…

Owen Wingrave, Sydney Chamber Opera

Carriageworks, Sydney, August 5 THE tyros at Sydney Chamber Opera nimbly and thrillingly tread where larger organisations fear to go, or at least traverse sparingly. Owen Wingrave is perfect SCO territory: it is 20th century repertoire, it’s an Australian stage premiere and it suits presentation by a small, tightly focused group of musicians. Another attraction,…

A Masked Ball, Semele Walk, Sydney Festival

A Masked Ball, Opera Australia in association with the Sydney Festival, January 16 Semele Walk, KunstFestSpiele Herrenhausen, Germany, Sydney Festival, January 12 WHEREVER or whenever you want to set it, Verdi’s A Masked Ball – Un ballo in maschera – takes place in a world of privilege where the haves live it large and those…