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

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Comedian Tom Gleeson tilts at public servants
COMEDIAN Tom Gleeson had no idea how popular he was with what he calls the “bloated public service”, so has two shows when he comes to town to perform “Cheer Up” at the Playhouse on August 19, at 7pm and 8.45pm. Bookings to or 6275 2700.


THIS year’s choir section of the Australian National Eisteddfod runs from August 18 to 19. All program details and booking details at

AUSTRALIAN Beard Day, where the battle for the Canberra’s best beard will commence, will be at King O’Malley’s in Civic from 2pm this Sunday, August 20. You can donate at


MUSE Café has one of Australia’s most accomplished former diplomats, Richard Woolcott, in conversation with executive director of the ANU China Institute, Richard Rigby, in a conversation on Australian diplomacy. East Hotel Kingston, 3pm-4pm, this Sunday, August 20. Bookings to

Zoe Woods engraving on glass
Crystal Clear: Talking Residencies”, with  Zoe Woods at Canberra Glassworks, from 4.30pm, Thursday, August 24. Entry by donation. RSVP by August 23 to

Workshops and classes:

THE Groove Warehouse has Japanese percussion/Marimba legend Kuniko Kato (Japan) in a two-day residency, on August 31 and September 1, as part of her 2017 Australian national tour. Details and bookings to or 6260 2847.

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:

SOUTHERN Tablelands Arts is running a “Website Building for Creatives” course on practical web building skills for artists, creatives and NFP arts organisations, in four local government areas Goulburn Mulwaree (full), Wingecarribee (full), Queanbeyan-Palerang and Hilltops. Bookings to

CREATIVE Partnerships Australia is offering 12 arts fundraising mentorships for Australian arts organisations in 2017/18. Over 10 months, mentors and mentees will work together to set organisational fundraising goals while developing skills and methodology. Applications close on August 18. Further details via

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

Mamma Mia! is returning to Canberra.
“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.

ENTRIES are open for the Digital Portraiture Award 2017, to 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 makerspace, 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 Cranston, 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


AT the Dead Poets Dinner, diners are invited to read one or two poems by dead poets whose work they admire, in any language. At ANU’s Graduate House from 6.30pm, Wednesday, August 23. Booking to close August 16.

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

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.


THE National Film and Sound Archive of Australia has “Strictly Ballroom: Behind the Curtain”, a new online exhibition to celebrate 25 years since the release of Baz Luhrmann’s debut film in August 1992. Visit

“Blue Love” is billed as a poetic and satirical take on the clichés of pop culture, romance, coupledom and suburbia.

CHOREOGRAPHER Shaun Parker’s “Blue Love” is billed as a poetic and satirical take on the clichés of pop culture, romance, coupledom and suburbia. Infused with intense physical theatre, film and dance, the show sees Glenn and Rhonda Flune take the audience on an expedition in search of the perfect relationship. The Playhouse, Canberra Theatre Centre, to August 17. Bookings to or 6275 2700.

AUSDANCE ACT Open Class is continuing with advanced to professional level classes on Wednesdays from 10am-11.30am at the Belconnen Arts Centre. An evening class on Thursday, called Ballet with Jessica Ausserlechner, will is 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:

THE Young Music Society Concert Band, conducted by Beth Way, will present a selection of light music titled “Sunday Afternoon by Lake Ginninderra”, at the Belconnen Arts Centre, from 2.30pm-3.30pm, this Sunday, August 20, and it’s free.

Hector McDonald. Photo by Heide Smith
FORMER staffer at the School of Music, Hector McDonald, who was at the time, the principal Horn with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra and Concentus Musicus Wien, returns as a featured performer in the current Canberra Symphony Orchestra concert. He will be supported by Meriel Owen on the piano and will perform horn works by Krol, Beethoven, Dukas and Messiaen. At Llewellyn Hall, from 7.30pm, to August 17. Bookings to

THE next concerts by Musica da Camera will be conducted by Leonard Weiss, with flautist Jodie Petrov as soloist. At the Holy Covenant Church, Dexter Street, Cook, 2.30pm, August 19 and then at 2pm on August 20 in Gunning Shire Hall. Children aged under 15 years are free. Tickets at the door, online bookings to

Christian Bester
BARITONE Christian Bester and Canberra pianist Hilda Visser-Scott will perform a romantic program, which includes works by Gounod, Bizet, Farrenc, Bellini and Chopin. At Wesley Music Centre, from 5pm, Saturday, August 19. Proceeds to go to the Wesley Music Scholars program. Bookings to and at the door.

THE Phoenix Pub in Civic has as follows: Thursday, August 17, at 9pm, Piss Weak Karaoke; Friday, August 18, at 9pm, Melbourne indie pop/rock quintet, Self Talk, Brief Habits, Helena Pop, Slagatha Christie; and Saturday, August 19, at 8pm, The Gypsy Scholars, Tate Sheridan, Aloise.

CANBERRA women’s ensemble Polifemy, directed by Robyn Mellor with Peter Young as guest artist at the organ, will be presenting a kaleidoscope of music inspired by the Magnificat at Wesley Uniting Church, Forrest, 4.30pm, Sunday, August 20. Tickets at the door or bookings to

Pete Murray
BYRON Bay singer-songwriter, Pete Murray, has released his sixth studio album “Camacho”, and will be playing with his full band, at the Canberra Theatre this Saturday, August 19. Bookings to or 6275 2700.


“The Inheritance” is a new Australian comedy written by Greg Gould and directed by Cate Clelland for Budding Theatre.
“THE Inheritance” is a new Australian comedy written by Greg Gould and directed by Cate Clelland for Budding Theatre, with an all-star cast of young and older actors. When billionaire Les Essington dies, his estranged daughter Gina is forced to put her medical career on hold to come home for the will-reading. At Belconnen Community Theatre, to August 17. Bookings to

DYLAN van den Berg is an actor and writer based in Sydney and Canberra. His first full-length play, “Blue”, in which three women grapple with their personal demons against a backdrop of disco music, is being showcased under the direction of PJ Williams as part of The Street’s “First Seen” dramaturgical series, at The Street Theatre, Civic, 3pm, this Sunday, August 20. Bookings to or 6247 1223.

Comedian Damian Callinan and award winning filmmaker John Cheery have captured local identities on camera to celebrate the human fabric of Queanbeyan.
COMEDIAN Damian Callinan and award winning filmmaker John Cheery have captured local identities on camera to celebrate the human fabric of Queanbeyan and will combine them with onstage interactions. “Town Folk”, at The Q, Queanbeyan, 7.30pm, this Saturday, August 19. Bookings to or 6285 6290.

THE poetry of Canberra’s Joshua Bell is the inspiration for Canberra Youth Theatre’s company ensemble’s newest work, “Poem Every Day”, which, we hear, will be “highly theatricalised” in drawing on the practices of Pina Bausch, Omar Naharin and Bertolt Brecht. At Ainslie (note not Gorman) Arts Centre, Braddon, from 7pm, August 17-19. Bookings to

KATE Blackhurst has directed Lally Katz’s “Neighbourhood Watch”. It’s an all-star cast but watch out for mother and daughter pairing in performances by Liz de Toth and Alex McPherson.“Neighbourhood Watch”, runs until August 19 in Theatre 3. Bookings to or 6257 1950.


“NEIL Roberts: chances with glass” is an exhibition focusing on the much-missed late artist’s relationship with glass as “object, medium and signifier”. Curated by Barbara Campbell and Jane Cush, it runs at Canberra Glassworks until October 15.

A selection of Kay Patterson’s collection. Photo supplied by the Museum of Australian Democracy by Mark Nolan.
“FINDERS Keepers: Collectors and their Stories MoAD at Old Parliament House runs from 9am-5pm, daily, until the middle of 2018. Entry is free after museum admission.

NANCY Sever Gallery is presenting “Byrd: Unreliable Narrator”, an exhibition of recent work by Canberra’s top mural and graffiti artist. The themes of Byrd’s work have grown out of a longstanding relationship with Australia’s natural environment, its fragility, management and the traces of human passage through it. 4/6 Kennedy St Kingston, Wednesday to Sunday, 11am– 6pm until September 3.

IN “Tolwong Road : A story of fire,” Stephen Hartup’s black and white photographs tell the story of bushfire, recovery and regeneration.
IN “Tolwong Road : A story of fire”, Stephen Hartup’s black and white photographs tell the story of bushfire, recovery and regeneration as observed and captured over a three-year period. At X Gallery, 32 Gibraltar Street, Bungendore, opens this Saturday, August 19, opening hours, 11am to 5pm, Friday to Monday.

The 50th Anniversary exhibition for the Queanbeyan Art Society is showing until the end of August at the QAS Gallery, Trinculo Place, Queanbeyan, under the bridge on the Queanbeyan River bank.

One of the new exhibitions at Photoaccess is “Next Generation: Solomon Islands, After RAMSI” by Sean Davey.
PHOTOACCESS has two new exhibitions: “Next Generation: Solomon Islands, After RAMSI” by Sean Davey and “Provenance” by Geoffrey Dunn. Both exhibitions will open in the Huw Davies Gallery, from 6pm today, Thursday, August 17.  The shows will then continue until September 10, where they will be “In Conversation with Sean Davey and Geoffrey Dunn”.

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, which conclude that making art is the often-overlooked force that unites all people. ANCA Gallery, 1 Rosevear Place, Dickson, from Wednesday to Sunday, 12pm–5pm, until August 20.

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. And, Art Group Creative Fellow Harriet Schwarzrock is now working full time in the Engine Room. Visitors can say hello to Zoe and Harriet in the Engine Room at Canberra Glassworks, 11 Wentworth Avenue, 10am–4pm, Wednesday to Sunday, until August 27.

Fern Beakers by Josephine Townsend.
TWO exhibitions are opening at Watson Arts Centre this Friday, August 17. The first, “Light and Heat” is a collaboration between two sisters – photographer Jane Kelly, a Sydney based professional photographer, and Canberra ceramicist, Josephine Townsend, a Canberra based ceramicist. The second, Janet Fieldhouse’s self-titled is an exhibition of the work of Canberra Potters’ current artist-in-residence. Both will be on display at Watson Arts Centre, Aspinall Street, Watson, until September 10, 10am–4pm, Thursday to Sunday.

M16 Artspace has four new exhibitions until September 3: “ Lines of Site: Finding the Sublime in Canberra”, curated by Grace Blakeley-Carroll, features the work of Jacqueline Bradley, Cathy Franzi, Kirstie Rea, Mark Mohell, Annika Harding, Caren Florance and Melinda Smith; and “The Structure of Things”, by Al Munro. All open at in Blaxland Crescent, Griffith, 6pm, Thursday, August 17.

A BOOK launch of “Members Only” by Caren Florance and Melinda Smith will be held at M16, from 2pm, August 20. All welcome.

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

“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. Megalo Print Studio + Gallery 21 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, Tuesday to Saturday, 9.30am-5pm, until August 19.


THE Belconnen Community Gallery “Springboard” series presents “Beauty in Imperfection”.
THE Belconnen Community Gallery “Springboard” series presents “Beauty in Imperfection”, an exhibition of textiles and ceramics by its Emerging Artist Support Scheme prize winner Christine Appleby, at gallery@bcs, Swanson Court, Belconnen, until September 1.

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.

“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.

“JUDE Rae, A Space of Measured Light”, is the newest exhibition at the ANU Drill Hall Gallery. It’ll be launched by gallery director Terence Maloon at 6pm, this Friday, August 18. There will also be an in conversation session with the artist at noon on Saturday, August 19. The exhibition runs at Kingsley Street, Acton, until October 15, from 10 am–5pm, Wednesday to Sunday.

“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.

“Nicola” by Mayin Chan.
GINNINDERRA School House Gallery has “Life Scapes”, mixed media landscapes, animals and still life by Lesa Potten, who is a veterinary surgeon from Hall, traditional local country scenes and seascapes by Col Nelson of Yass and abstract figure sculptures created from beautiful local Broome W.A. timbers by Mayin Chan, a dentist from Broome. At Sweet Copper Cafe, Gold Creek, Nicholls, Fridays 10am–4pm, Saturdays and Sundays 8.30am–4.30pm, to August 27.

BILK Gallery is showcasing “Place, Knowing and Being”, a recent collection of works by Christopher Robertson, that were submitted as part of his practice lead research for a PhD at the ANU. These works include flatware and furniture as well as a selection of brooches from Robertson’s prior oeuvre. Bilk Gallery for contemporary metal and glass, Palmerston Lane, Manuka until September 3.

Lake Eyre Drain (2017) 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 human features are transported through genetic make-up. Both at 1/30 Aurora Street, Queanbeyan, from 10am–4pm, Tuesday to Sunday, to August 20.

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

BEAVER Galleries now have works by ceramic artist Avital Sheffer and Nicola Dickson’s most recent work, which has been inspired by the D’Entrecasteaux expedition to Australia and the Pacific in 1792-3. Opens at 81 Denison Street, Deakin, 6pm, Thursday, August 10 and runs until August 27.

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.

SECOND World War veterans —6500 of them—are showcased in a unique photography installation at the Australian War Memorial, “Reflections – honouring our WWII veterans”. The images will be archived and made accessible to the public as part of the Memorial’s online collection.

Bingi rust close, Helen Pizzano
STRATHNAIRN Gallery has digital photographic artist Helen Pizzano’s first solo exhibition, Bingi Bingi, showcasing the colour and texture of Bingi Bingi Point on the South Coast running until August 27. All works and wearable art scarves are available for purchase during the exhibition.

“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.

A work by Ingrid Bowen
SYDNEY artist Ingrid Bowen will open a solo exhibition at Suki & Hugh Gallery in Bungendore at 4.57pm, on August 19, all welcome. The exhibition entitled “Vast” presents a series of whimsical watercolour landscapes that should resonate with viewers from our region. 38A Gibraltar Street, Bungendore until October 1.

KYEEMA Gallery now has “Unconventional Destinations”, a collection of photographs by Mark Cunich, at 13 Gladstone Street, Hall Village, 10.30am–5pm, Thursday to Sunday until August 20.



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Helen Musa
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