Arabic revolution and romance

 “Grandma, A Thousand Times”... one of the movies in the Arab Film Festival.

“Grandma, A Thousand Times”... one of the movies in the Arab Film Festival.

• FEATURING revolution, romance and stark reality, the Arab Film Festival is in Canberra until July 21 at the Arc Cinema. Settings include tunnels below the border of Israel, wartime Beirut, Cairo in January 2011, the streets of Morocco and even suburban Australia – it’s about as up to date as it could be. Full program at

• TERRIFIC news for opera lovers that CinemaLive and Greater Union Manuka will screen Opera Australia’s famous “La Dolce Vita”   production of Verdi’s Rigoletto  July 23-27. Elijah Moshinsky originally directed this terrific production. Alan Opie plays the hunchback jester, with Emma Matthews as his daughter Gilda.
For a different audience on July 24, they’ll screen André Rieu’s annual concert series from Maastricht direct via satellite. Bookings to

• BARBARA van der Linden’s next portrait in her marathon Canberra Centenary project series is of graphic designer Frank Arnold. “He looks like Keith Richards from the Rolling Stones and we can imagine his life sometimes runs in close parallel,” she says.

• HURRY, hurry, hurry to book for the following two concerts: creative director of Canberra’s Centenary Robyn Archer is incredibly busy, but not too busy to perform “The Other Great American Songbook” at The Street, July 16-17. Bookings to 6247 1223. Then the Choir of Christ’s College, Cambridge, is at Wesley Uniting Church, 7.30pm, July 19 and 20. Bookings to 6232 7248 or email Full program at

• ARTIST Steve Roper is organising an exhibition of work by himself, Mac Nichols, Moira Nelson, Margot Hislop, Terry Everston and Jo Telfer at Cafe Yala at CIT Reid campus, Monday-Friday, until August. The fabulous title? “Woof Cluck Moo Neigh”. No prizes for guessing that animals feature prominently.

• THE National Film and Sound Archive tells us that the Film Australia Collection, consisting of about 5000 titles, has been transferred from Screen Australia to the management and care of the NFSA. What a coup.

• CARO Roach, ACT ArtsAbility Officer, is naturally chuffed that Federal Arts Minister Simon Crean has announced $500,000 in Australian Government funding for Arts Access Australia, the national peak body for arts and disability.

• REMEMBER our call for unloved 35mm film cameras? Well, West Belconnen Child and Family Centre is hosting classes where ace photographer, Lee Grant, will teach photography as art and as journalism beginning on August 4. It’s free, but be quick. Bookings to 62640232 or

• ROB Riley’s 10th solo show, (and his fourth in Canberra) “Screen Graphics – Common Sites”, is at CCAS Manuka until July 17. Riley’s paintings are “vertically gridded 2D planes with freeform, painterly shapes floating on their surfaces” and owe much to familiar online sites.

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