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All eyes on CATS nominees

THE nominations for the 2014 Canberra Area Theatre Awards, the “CATS” were announced this evening at a snazzy dinner held in the Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre. According to the founder of the awards, Coralie Wood, this was a particularly strong year for non-professional theatre throughout the wider Canberra region. The nominations, nearly 250 of them […]

African designs and camels for harbour ‘Aida’

SPECTACULAR African-themed Designs for Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour’s coming production of Verdi’s “Aida” have today been unveiled by Opera Australia. Designer Mark Thompson is shaping a spectacular vision for Aida, Inspired by the colours and designs of Africa and Ethiopia. Ablaze in gold and vibrant colour, with exotic head pieces, swirling dresses and bare […]

‘Mary Poppins’ stars raise questions about local musicals

AS excitement mounts in Canberra about coming blockbuster productions – professional and Pro-Am – of “Sweet Charity,” “Mary Poppins” and “Jesus Christ Superstar,” questions are being asked around town as to whether we might not have enough musicals to satisfy the Canberra public. Earlier this week, Stephen Pike at the Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre, The […]

Challenging interventions – Canberra’s newest theatre company

SOME of Canberra’s most socially aware and committed theatre artists have drawn accolades at an arts and disability event in Sydney. The ensemble of nine actors make up Canberra’s newest actors’ company, REBUS Theatre, directed by Robin Davidson and aimed at raising awareness of social issues and promoting equality for people living with disabilities, is […]

Ghostly comedy for REP’s silly season

THEY’RE normally hard-nosed realists over at Canberra Rep, but Noël Coward’s comedy, “Blithe Spirit,” the fifth production in the 2014-15 season, has them breaking most of the rules. Opening this Friday November 21 in a new production by Kate Blackhurst, the hilarious “Blithe Spirit” was, improbably, written in in 1941 when Coward headed to a […]

Arts / The little, lost suburb talks back

HOW do you make a theatre piece about a suburb? Easy, say, installation artist Louise Morris and theatre director/writer Pip Buining – just engage with the locals. In planning a site-specific “theatrical journey”, “Anthology”, Morris and Buining have set their sights on Westlake, the suburb once located in Stirling Park between the lake and the […]

Bell emboldens school actors with The Scottish Play

BELL Shakespeare and the Canberra Theatre Centre are about to astonish Canberra, and by implication the rest of the country, with their inaugural “Bell Shakespeare Schools Festival” running this week in the Playhouse. It’s a first, with high schools and colleges from the ACT and nearby region exploring the Bard in all his complexity. Billed […]

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NSW stumps up $20,000 for Canberra’s theatre awards

MEMBER for Monaro John Barilaro was joined yesterday by Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts Troy Grant to announce a $20,000 grant to help fund the Canberra Area Theatre (CAT) Awards. Following the ACT Government’s decision to withdraw funding support for the CAT Awards, Mr Barilaro said the NSW Government was keen to ensure […]

Out-of-towners to star in ‘Poppins’

FREE Rain Theatre has today made its long-awaited announcement of the interstate leads for its March 2015 of “Mary Poppins” at Canberra Theatre. The two leads, Mary Poppins and Bert, will be played by in-demand young musical theatre stars leads Alinta Chidzey and Shaun Rennie. This announcement is likely to further aggravate discontent in the […]

Arts / Surprises in Canberra Theatre’s celebratory season

TO dark-voiced cabaret star and MC Mikelangelo, it was a once-in-50-year opportunity to celebrate. To theatregoers keen to hear the Canberra Theatre’s selection of theatrical goodies for 2015 it was a chance to “oooh” and “aahh” at novelties, old favourites and one or two surprises at the 2013 subscription season on Monday (October 20). With […]