Arts / What’s on and where in Canberra this weekend?

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Tara Robertson, Beau Dean Riley Smith, Kaine Sultan-Babij in Bennelong. Photo by Vishal Pandey.
WITH “Bennelong”, Bangarra Dance theatre’s director Stephen Page wanted to “shake it up a bit and make it operatic”. At Canberra Theatre, August 3–5, bookings to or 6275 2700.


RAW’s mission is to provide independent artists of all creative genres, with the tools, resources and exposure needed to inspire and cultivate creativity and hosts events.
RAW’s mission is to provide independent artists of all creative genres, with the tools, resources and exposure needed to inspire and cultivate creativity and hosts events in more than 60 cities across the US, Australia, Canada and the UK. Canberra’s next RAW will be at Belconnen Arts Centre, 118 Emu Bank, Belconnen, this Thursday, August 3, from at 6.30pm. Bookings to or at the door.

“DIRRUM Dirrum 2017: For the Common Good” is a summit at Radford College this Saturday that seeks to foster a greater humanity. Speakers include Sarah Bachelard, Yassmin Abdel-Magied and Mark Tedeschi. It all winds up at 7pm with George Huitker and his band Junk Sculpture releasing a new song and video clip, “Near Myall Creek”. Mackinnon Senior School Building, Radford College, College Street, Bruce, Saturday, August 5. All welcome and information at


THE Drill Hall Gallery Cezanne Lecture Series hosted by director Terence Maloon continues apace with Lecture 4, “The artist of doubt, contradiction and crisis”, at ANU School of Art and Design, Level 1, via the Childers Street entrance, from 3pm, Sunday, August 6. Tickets at the door.

Workshops and classes:

Paul Jarman
“SINGING for your Soul” will see Australian singer and composer, Paul Jarman, leading a two-day singing workshop, suitable for all ages and abilities, in Four Winds’ Windsong Pavilion. Included in the ticket price is a vegetarian lunch and morning tea as well as a yoga/mindfulness/tai chi session. Four Winds Windsong Pavilion, Barragga Bay, 9.30am–3.30pm, Saturday, August 5 and 9.30am–2.30pm, Sunday, August, 6. Bookings to or 6493 3414.

SOUTHERN Tablelands Arts is hosting a professional development course called “Website Building for Creatives” in the Goulburn-Mulwaree, Wingecarribee, and Queanbeyan-Palerang and Hilltops local government areas. Bookings to

CIT Adult Short courses are held every first weekend of the month all year round at Canberra Glassworks. Costs apply and to find out more, email

Arts Business:

BERNIE Ayers Collection Sale, includes works by Ben Quilty and Reko Rennie. At Aarwun Gallery, Shop 11 Federation Square, Gold Creek, opens on Saturday, August 5, and runs for two weeks. All inquiries to 0407 778022.

CANBERRA Writers Festival is coming up again for the second time in late August and bookings can now be made at or 132 849.

ENTRIES are open for John Hinde Award for Excellence in Science-Fiction Writing, with $10,000 on offer for the best produced script and professional support for the best unproduced script entered each year. Valued at $15,000, the prize will be presented in early December for an original essay of up to 3000 words that addresses a significant aspect of contemporary Australian life. The winning essay will be published in The Saturday Paper on December 23. Submissions are open until September 18, to

GARY France’s Groove Warehouse in Hume is expanding its percussion business and now offers daytime adult classes and keyboard lessons at 5/1 Sawmill Circuit, Hume. Information and enrolments to

PIGEONHOLE Theatre’s production “Playhouse Creatures”, seen at The Q last year, has been invited as the only Australian representative at the Mondial du Theatre in Monaco in August. It’s time to chip in and help director Jordan Best and her all-star Canberra cast get there via the crowdfunding site,

“MAMMA Mia!” The musical, inspired by ABBA’s classic songs, has seen over 60 million people all around the world pack in for the show. Tickets are now on sale for a new Aussie production that will premiere at the Canberra Theatre from November 24 to December 10. Bookings to or 6275 2700.

Frederic Chopin 1849
THE final fundraising event for the Australian International Chopin Piano Competition icoming up from September 10–17 is “Dinner with Monsieur Chopin” at the Polish Australian White Eagle Club on August 12. All details at

ENTRIES are open for the Digital Portraiture Award 2017, which will go on show at the National Portrait Gallery from December 1. Entrants have until midnight on  September 17 to submit their digital portraits. The winner of the Award will receive $10,000 cash and an artistic residency valued at $15,000 at State Library of Queensland’s community makers space, The Edge. All details at

THE 10th Queanbeyan Art Society’s Charity Fine Art Show will take place in City Walk Canberra between King O’Malley’s Pub and the merry-go-round, from September 23 to October 2. Entries are now welcome, inquiries to the president of the society, Barry, at 0439 392709.

YOUNG Canberrans with ideas for projects, events or activities, which focus on social inclusion can now apply for the ACT government’s Youth InterACT grants of up to $1500. The grants are available for initiatives that will support young people in Canberra. Initiatives previously funded include an event celebrating Pacific Island culture and workshops creating art from recycled materials. The grants are open to Canberrans aged 12-25 and organisations that support young Canberrans. Applications will close at midnight on September 3. Information at

AINSLIE and Gorman Arts Centres offers supported office accommodation for artists, creatives, as well as arts organisations and music-based organisations and individuals. Inquiries to


Dancer in “Love is Love”.
FORTY original artworks from the never-before-seen CBCA Children’s Book Week collection can be seen in the Clive Price Suite, Building 1, University of Canberra, from 10am-2pm, Monday to Friday to August 30.


INSPIRED by great Shakespearean stories about love, lies, family and betrayal, Australian dance company Dance Editorial Productions is bringing “Love is Love”, a hip hop and contemporary dance show. The dancers are aged between 14 and 17 and the cast includes Canberrans, Bella Choundary, Noah Gorrell, Chloe Andriolo, Indigo Butler Moss, and Kayla Watson. At Gungahlin Theatre, August 5, only. Bookings to

AUSDANCE ACT Open Class is continuing with advanced to professional level classes on Wednesdays from 10am-11.30am at the Belconnen Arts Centre. Evening classes on Thursdays run from 6.50pm-8.20pm at QL2’s Dance Studio, for intermediate to professional level dancers of all genres. Inquiries to 6247 9103.


Concerts and Gigs:

Canberra Blues Society is celebrating International Blues Music Day on Saturday, August 5.
CANBERRA Blues Society is celebrating International Blues Music Day on Saturday, August 5. There’ll be 12 acts on two stages, including Owen Campbell Band (ACT Region) Shane Pacey Trio (NSW) and PJ O’Brien Band (Sydney). At the Harmonie German Club, Jerrabomberra Avenue, Narrabundah, from 1pm-11.30pm. All welcome.

IGITUR Nos Chamber Choir will be performing at the next High Court of Australia Sunday concert from 1.30pm, August 6. The event is free but registrations are essential to

THE National Capital Orchestra is performing Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto with pianist Katherine Day. It will also be hosting the Canberra premiere of Australian composer Nigel Sabin’s “Symphony” and the world premiere of a suite from Australian TV series “Moby Dick” by Australian film composer Christopher Gordon. At The Q, Queanbeyan, from 3pm Sunday, August 6. Bookings to or 6285 6290.

CANBERRA Wind Symphony presents an evening of contemporary works from composers telling their New York stories with intriguing rhythms, textures and colours, with two Australian premieres and a major Leonard Bernstein work. “New York, New York”, at The Street Theatre, 7.30pm, Wednesday, August 9. Bookings to or 6247 1223.

MARCELA Fiorillo’s piano students, J.Chia, J. Zheng, N. Wang, M. Nguyen, A. Wang, Crony Zhou,J. Chia, E. Wang, F. Bian, L. Nguyen, I. Bian, D. Nguyen, I. Stening, A. Choy, S. Kan, D. Douglas-Smith, B. Cummins, C. Thompson, I Stening and N. Wang, will performing works by the masters at Wesley Music Centre, Forrest, from 3.30pm Saturday, August 5. The entry is free.

Adam Harvey and Beccy Cole
COUNTRY luminaries Adam Harvey and Beccy Cole will be back in town with a tour based on their album “ The Great Country Songbook Volume II”. It’ll be a nostalgic time, with classic duets and show stoppers like “Jackson” and their personal favourite, “You’re The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly”. At Canberra Southern Cross Club, Woden, 8pm, Friday, August 4. Bookings to or 6283 7200.

THE Australian String Quartet String Quartet will be back in town this weekend performing three works by Britten, Stanhope and Dvo?ák reflecting themes of exile and return. At Gandel Hall, National Gallery of Australia, from 2pm, Sunday, August 6. Bookings to

FORMER King of Pop, Russell Morris, joins America for their touring show, which is coming up at the Royal Theatre on Thursday, August 3. Bookings to or 132 849.

PHOENIX Pub in Civic has as follows: Thursday, August 3 at 8pm, Lecherous Gaze, Hydromedusa, New Age; Friday, August 4, 9pm, Foley, Capes, Azim Zain & His Lovely Bones, and Helena Pop.


The Laramie Project
NARRABUNDAH College’s players, directed by Sophie Benassi, are staging perhaps the worlds’ most famous verbatim theatre piece, “The Laramie Project”. It is based on a real-life story from 1998, when a 21-year-old gay was beaten and left for dead. At The Hawk Theatre, Narrabundah College, until August 5. Bookings to

KATE Blackhurst, who directed Noel Coward’s “Blithe Spirit for REP” in 2014, is now directing Lally Katz’s” Neighbourhood Watch”. It’s an all-star cast, but we don’t know who’s playing the terrifying Alsatian dog in the show. At Canberra REP, Theatre 3, August 4–19. Bookings to or 6257 1950.

Around the World in 80 Days
ONE of the silliest comedies on the circuit, the stage adaptation of Jules Verne’s novel “Around the World in 80 Days”, is coming to town. The famous tale of Phineas Fogg’s balloon ride around the world, is billed as suitable for adults, families and children over seven years. At The Q – Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre, between August 2–5. Bookings to 6285 6290 or

BNC Theatre, Chrysalis Theatre and Lightbulb Improv, have joined forces to create a new experience for Canberra theatregoers in “Canberra Unscripted”, a weekend festival featuring five new shows spanning comedy, music, crime and Shakespeare… with zombies. At The Street Theatre, August 4–6. Bookings to or 6247 1223.

Daniel Greiss (background) as Tony and Brandon J Davenport (foreground) as Callum.
“WE don’t hear enough about queer history,” says director/playwright Trevar Chilver, whose new play “78 Reasons to Stay the Night”, is at Courtyard Studio, Canberra Theatre Centre, August 2 (preview) to August 9. Bookings to or 6275 2700. The August 3 performance will be followed by a community forum exploring the changes for the LGBTIQ+ community over the four decades since the first Mardi Gras.


HEIDI Lefebvre’s “SAGA SAGA” series was born from a visit to the Caverne du Pont D’Arc in the Rhone-Alps region of France and a tour through the recreated caves. In this second instalment, “SAGA SAGA: Imagination Time Machine”, Lefebvre brings together drawings, objects and writing that conclude that making art is the often-overlooked force that unites all people. ANCA Gallery, 1 Rosevear Place, Dickson ACT. ANCA Gallery hours, Wednesday to Sunday, 12pm–5pm until August 20.

Painter Jennifer Manning is exhibiting moody and semi abstract landscapes in the foyer of the East Hotel
PAINTER Jennifer Manning is exhibiting moody and semi abstract landscapes in the foyer of the East Hotel, Kingston until August 18. All welcome.

ZOE Woods from South Australia is Ausglass Artist in Residence at Canberra Glassworks, where she is to incorporate engraving techniques and experiment with new forms. Visitors can say hello to Zoe in her studio in the Engine Room at Canberra Glassworks, 11 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, from 10am–4pm, Wednesday to Sunday until August 27. Entry by donation.

MEANTIME Art Group Creative Fellow Harriet Schwarzrock is now working full time in the Engine Room at the Glassworks from 10am–4pm, Wednesday to Sunday. Entry by donation.

“RETROGRADE” is an exhibition of new work by Melbourne artist Jimmy Langer. The works are direct digital experiments utilising printmaking techniques and are the result of a four-week residency at Megalo in June this year. At Megalo Print Studio + Gallery, 21 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, Tuesday to Saturday, 9.30am-5pm until August 19. Artist talk: 5.30pm, Thursday, August 3.

MARSDEN Art Group, established in 2003 by Barbara Van Der Linden, visits the theme “Evolve”, which reflects a process of change whether in relation to humans, animals, the planet, weather, plants or thought. This year’s artists are Ian Baird, Julie Delves, Liz Dovey, Val Gee, Margaret Gordon, Susan Hey, Penina Huho, Marilyn Hutchinson, Sally Jones, Margaret Kalms, Manuel Pfeiffer, Saggu Sukhvinder, Barbara Van Der Linden and Delene White. At Watson Arts Centre, Aspinall Street, Watson, from August 3-13, 10am-4pm, Thursday to Sunday. “Meet the artist’s” afternoon tea, 1pm–3pm, Sunday, August 13. All welcome.

“Ficus Fantasy” by Joan Costanzo.
FORM Studio and Gallery now has “Branching Out”, an exploration of techniques and materials by Joan Costanzo and “The Shaping”, in which Karyn Fearnside looks at how our features are transported through our genetic make-up. Both at 1/30 Aurora Street, Queanbeyan, August 3–20, 10am–4pm, Tuesday to Sunday.

BELCONNEN Community Gallery “Springboard” series presents, “Soul of Fiji”, an exhibition resulting from a trip in February this year where CIT 2016 Photography Competition Prize Winner Lydia Downe travelled to Fiji to work alongside UN Women documenting their “Markets for Change” program. Gallery@bcs, Swanson Court, Belconnen, Monday to Friday, 9am-4.30pm to August 11.

A RARE collection, which features 52 portraits of British street people will be on display for the first time in “Dempsey’s People: a folio of British street portraits 1824-1844”. Curated by David Hansen, the exhibition will bring together 51 works painted by little-known itinerant portraitist, John Dempsey. National Portrait Gallery, King Edward Terrace, Parkes, from 10am–5pm daily, to October 22.

M16 has four new exhibitions at 21 Blaxland Crescent, until August 13. “Touch” is the focus of the annual M16 Artspace Studio Artists’ 2017 exhibition, with a mighty line-up of works by Carmel McCrow, Val Gee, Angela Bakker, Sarah Murphy, Marje Seymour, Tony Curran, Jacob Potter, Bronwyn Davies, Jane Dunn, Phil Page, Fiona Little, Jodie Cunningham, Robin Setchell, Megan Jackson, Katy Mutton, Johanna Butler, Sanne Koelemij, Kate Murphy, Leanne Crisp, Di Broomhall, Derek O’Connor, Nicola Dickson, Rose Montebello, Ella Whateley, Meelan Oh, Kerry Shepherdson, Katherine Campbell, Andrea McCuaig, Elizabeth Faul and Suzanne Moss.

ALSO at M16 is “Orchestrated Chaos”, by Rahsa Ajaj and an exhibition by Hands On Studio artists, curated by Tilly Davey and Hands-On tutors. Then in Chutespace is “Let Go” by Caren Florance which is a meditation on grieving that uses a poem by Rosemary Dobson.

“MELODRAMA in Meiji Japan” features Japanese woodblock (Kuchi-e) illustrations at the Exhibition Gallery on the ground floor of the National Library of Australia, from 10am-5pm, to August 27.

“DEFYING Empire: 3rd National Indigenous Art Triennial” brings the works of 30 contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to the National Gallery of Australia until September 10.

“INTERLACED” is a new exhibition of handwoven cloth by Belinda Rosee, who helped Canberra weaver, Monique van Nieuwland when she was asked to design and produce fabric for the Hollywood movie “Gods of Egypt”, starring Geoffrey Rush. The exhibition will run until August 6.

“The High Court”, by Col Nelson.
MAYIN Chan, Col Nelson and Lesa Potten are holding an exhibition of their work called “Lifescapes” at the Old Ginninderra School House in Nicholls. Mixed media landscapes, animals and still life, traditional local country scenes, seascapes and abstract figure sculptures will be unveiled at its opening at Sweet Copper Cafe, Gold Creek, Nicholls, on Sunday, August 6 at 3pm. The exhibition will continue on Friday to Sunday, from August 4-27. 

CRAFT ACT has a solo exhibition by South Australian designer and maker Christian Hall, which includes furniture, sculpture and jewellery. Craft ACT will also feature “Emerging Contemporaries”, the Craft ACT National Award Exhibition for early career artists. At Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre, Level 1, North Building, 180 London Circuit. 

Detail from a Jason Benjamin oil painting
YARRALUMLA collector Bernie Ayers owns a body of work focussed on younger, mid-career artists like Reko Rennie, Jason Benjamin, Jasper Knight, Giles Alexander and Adam Cullen and Ben Quilty. Ayers is staging a private collection sale at Aarwun Gallery, Shop 11 Federation Square, Gold Creek, on Saturday, August 5. All inquiries to 0407 778 022.

MEREDITH Hinchliffe has curated an online exhibition of work by tapestry exponent Belinda Ramson, who died in 2014. This exhibition was mounted at the American Tapestry Alliance, visit

THE Australian War Memorial has as a permanent exhibition “The Holocaust: witnesses and survivors”, which includes over 85 collection items.

TWO exhibitions are at Beaver Galleries. Brenden Scott French’s kiln formed glass sculptures and wall pieces are carefully layered and assembled to develop pattern and form, which he uses as vehicles to reflect his experiences. Renowned artist Graham Fransella’s new works are the result of several decades of draughtsmanship and exploration into the theme of figure and landscape, painted on both canvas and paper. Beaver Galleries, 81 Denison Street, Deakin, from Tuesday to Friday, 10am-5pm, and Saturday and Sunday, 9am–5pm, July 20 to August 6.

“Red Noon” by Robert Boynes.
CANBERRA painter Robert Boynes’ newest exhibition of work, “Modern Times”, curated by Terence Maloon, is at the ANU Drill Hall Gallery, Kingsley Street, Acton, until August 13.

“THE Chandelier Show” is an opulent exhibition of hanging lights curated by Jane Cush, with works by Christine Atkins, Scott Chaseling, Ngaio Fitzpatrick, Jacqueline Knight, Kate Nixon, Tom Rowney, Wendy Dawes, and John and Ruth White. Canberra Glassworks, 11 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, until August 6.

NANCY Sever Gallery has an exhibition by the celebrated Canberra artist, Elisabeth Kruger, whose exhibition of recent works, “The Sea Paintings”, can be seen at the gallery, which is located on 4/6 Kennedy Street, Kingston. The exhibition will be on from Wednesday to Sunday, 11am–6pm until August 6.

THE Canberra Centre has now unveiled the first in a specially-commissioned series of large-scale murals, including an artwork based on the theme of the artwork series, “Beauty Redefined” created in Australian artist Nick Thomm’s photo-realistic style which utilises bright, psychedelic colours in a mixed-media format.

“A Change Is Gonna Come” is an exhibition focusing on the 1967 Aboriginal Referendum and the 1992 MABO land rights decision by the High Court. At the National Museum of Australia, until January 30, 2018.

“KIRSTIE Rea: the land”, a 20-year survey of works by one of Canberra’s most famous glass creators, has been chosen for the reopening of the Canberra Museum and Gallery. The show runs to August 20.

KYEEMA Gallery’s new exhibition with sale is “Margaret Ballard: Works in Resin”, which opens at 13 Gladstone Street, Hall Village. From 10.30am–5pm, Thursday to Sunday.



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Helen Musa
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