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

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Cast of “OH, What a Lovely War!” at REP, photo Helen Drum
“OH, What a Lovely War!” – the satirical stage musical created by Joan Littlewood and the Theatre Workshop, is being revived by Chris Baldock for Canberra REP, in part as a  WWI commemoration. Theatre 3, Acton, February 22 (preview) to March 10, Wednesday to Saturday. Bookings to or 6257 1950.


THE Mother Language Walk across Commonwealth Bridge marks the UNESCO-proclaimed Mother Language Day to promote awareness of linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. The walk across Kings Avenue Bridge will start from 3pm this Sunday, February 25, under the international flag display near the National Library on Lake Burley Griffin. It’s a free event and everyone’s welcome to bring a picnic for the end of the walk in Kings Park. More information at

THE inaugural Summerfest will be held at The Link, Ginninderry, from 5.30pm, this Saturday, February 24. Deputy Chief Minister and local member for Ginninderra, Yvette Berry, will open the event, which will be packed with live, outdoor music, dance and theatre performances from local community groups and artists. Recently opened Strathnairn Arts café, Two Before Ten, will also be selling treats. 90 Stockdill Drive, Holt. Bookings to or at the door.

The Crackup Sisters
THE Royal National Capital Agricultural Society has the bright, energetic and ridiculously witty, The Crackup Sisters, providing entertainment this year. They bring a mixed-bag of comedy, whip cracking and acrobatics and tell the stories of the Australian country and its larrikin characters. The 2018 show will be held at Exhibition Park in Canberra from February 23-25. Bookings and details to


MANNING Clark House Poetry has Alice Springs poet, Penny Drysdale, reading from her first collection “Dew and Broken Glass”. Keith Harrison will be reading from a forthcoming publication called “Love, Variously”, a gathering of love poems, prior to his Sydney launch in April. 11 Tasmania Circle, Forrest, 7pm, today, Thursday,  February 22. Tickets at the door, wine and nibbles provided.

Workshops and classes

“SOUL Motion” founder and master teacher Vinn Arjuna Marti from Portland Oregon is holding a weekend of conscious movement workshops, at Belconnen Arts Centre on March 3 and 4. Vinn has come especially to teach in Australia. Participants may enrol in single or both sessions. Bookings to Geeti at 0418 407984 or

DANCERS Steve Gow and Alison Plevey will conduct a two-hour QL2 free taster class for boys aged 13-20. During the class they’re invited to “defy gravity, take risks, jump high, move, get up there” and make it their own. Gorman Arts Centre, Braddon, 11am–1pm, February 25. Bookings to

Concerts and gigs

Conductor Dane Lam
CANBERRA Symphony Orchestra’s first big concert for the year features pianist Tamara-Anna Cislowska, in Prokofiev’s demanding Piano Concerto No.2. The conductor is the youthful Australian-raised Dane Lam, now at the helm of the of China’s Xi’an Symphony Orchestra, and the CSO will also perform works by Carl Vine and Elena Kats-Chernin as well as the Ninth Symphony of Shostakovich. Llewellyn Hall, 7.30pm, February 21 and 22, Bookings to

LUMINESCENCE Chamber Choir pays tribute to the art of renowned Parisian teacher and composer Nadia Boulanger, in a recital St Andrew’s Anglican Church, Braidwood, 2pm, Saturday, February 24, and Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra, 6pm, Sunday, February 25. Bookings to

SOPRANO Ayse Göknur Shanal and pianist Alan Hicks will perform “A Journey from East to West” for Art Song Canberra, at Wesley Music Centre, 20 National Circuit, Forrest, 3pm, Sunday, February 25. Tickets at the door only.

THE Australian Tenors are soloists in their own right, but have performed with Opera Australia, Australian and international symphony and philharmonic orchestras. At The Q, Queanbeyan, 2pm, February 24, but bookings to will be tight.

CLASSICAL pianists Shaun Choo and Bernice Chua join in a recital featuring works by familiar composers such as J.S. Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Debussy and Schubert. They will play piano with “4 hands” for Choo’s own award-winning composition, “Fiestravaganza”. Wesley Music Centre, 7pm. Bookings to or at the door.

Brooke McClymont and Adam Eckersley
AUSSIE country music couple Adam Eckersley and Brooke McClymont will be here performing singles from “Adam & Brooke”, other favourite albums and their debut duo single “Train Wreck”. They say they’ll tell lots of stories about the songs. Canberra Southern Cross Club, 8pm, Saturday February 24. Bookings to

CANADIAN guitarist Charlie A’Court is no stranger to Australian audiences, having played at some of Australia’s top festivals, such as Woodford Folk Festival, Gympie Music Muster and last year’s Blues on Broadbeach. He’ll be at the Harmonie German Club, Narrabundah, 8pm, Friday, February 23. Bookings to

BECK’S singular career has been one that’s seen him utilise all manners and eras of music. He’ll be back after a five-year absence. At Royal Theatre on Monday, February 26. Bookings to


PADMA Menon continues a busy season with “Dancing Deities”, a performance fusing contemporary and traditional Indian dance drawing on stories from Indian epics and myths, including the Blue God Krishna and the Indian deity Indra. James O. Fairfax Theatre, NGA, 6.30pm, February 23 and 24. Bookings to or 6240 6701.


Amanda Muggleton plays Maria Callas
AMANDA Muggleton is starring as diva Maria Callas in Adam Spreadbury-Maher’s production of Terrence McNally’s famous play, “Masterclass”, at The Playhouse, February 22-24. Bookings to or 6275 2700.


Sally Walk, ‘A little bit fancy’.
CERAMIC artist Sally Walk will return to Suki & Hugh Gallery in February with a solo exhibition entitled “Facades”. The exhibition comprises unique and elaborate creature-like sculptures and vessels. Some are delicate with frilled edges and fine carved patterns, others are harsh and aggressive with spikes and heavy carved lines. 38A Gibraltar Street, Bungendore, until March 18.

TWO new exhibitions of the year at Beaver Galleries are now open. In “A visit to the river”, Canberra ceramicist Cathy Franzi investigates ways in which representations of Australian flora on ceramic vessels can express current botanical and environmental knowledge. In “Slow boat”, printmaker David Frazer, explores complex emotional states of the human in intricately detailed prints. 81 Denison Street, Deakin, Tuesday to Friday, 10am-5pm and Saturday and Sunday 9am–5pm, until March 4.

CANBERRA Glassworks’ newest exhibition features “Hurt Locker” by Penny Byrne and “between stillness and movement”, by Harriet Schwarzrock, which involves a sound sculpture by Brian McNamara. At Canberra Glassworks, 11 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, to March 25.

Ciara O’Brien, Lifejacket graveyard 2016 (detail), inkjet print on phototex.
“INCOMMENSURABLE – photomedia in the era of globalisation” is an exhibition of work by Nick Danziger, Merilyn Fairskye, Ciara O’Brien, David Stephenson, Martin Walch and Anne Zahalka. ANU Drill Hall Gallery, February 22 to April 8, 10am–5pm, Wednesday to Sunday. Artists in conversation with curator Terence Maloon at 12pm, Friday, February 23. 

JON Lewis’ exhibition “Perfect Strangers”, which launched at the State Library of NSW last year joins Konrad Lenz’s “Portraits” exhibition at The Photography Room, Old Bus Depot, 21 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston Foreshore, running until March 4. Gallery open Sundays 10am-4pm and by appointment.

Nitty Gritty
BELCONNEN Community Gallery presents “Nitty Gritty – On the Front Line”, a mixed media exhibition of artworks by front line community sector workers, organised by artist/community sector worker Margy Duke. Gallery@bcs, Belconnen Community Centre, Swanson Court, Belconnen until March 16, Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm.

“BLAZE Twelve”, curated by Alexander Boynes, is an exhibition by artists Luke Aleksandrow, Riley Beaumont, Rowan Kane, Sanne Koelemij and Mei-Lynn Wilkinson. Opens at Canberra Contemporary Art Space, Gorman Arts Centre, 55 Ainslie Avenue Braddon, continues until April 14. All welcome.

Five WA artists at Bilk
BILK Gallery for contemporary metal and glass is launching its 2018 calendar with “Ap-ro-pos”, an exhibition of personal stories and makers narratives by five established Western Australian jewellers Brenda Ridgewell, Robin Wells, Claire Townsend, Helena Bogucki and Christel van der Laan. Opening at Bilk, Palmerston Lane, Manuka, by David Walker, at 6pm, Friday, February 23. The exhibition runs to March 24.

“LOOKING Out” is an exhibition of ceramics and paintings by the 2017 Anita McIntyre EASS award recipient Heidi Strachan and 2017 Artist in Residence Jackie Gasson is running at the Strathnairn Woolshed Gallery to March 11.

‘Esther’, by Nancy Tingey, watercolour.
“JUXTAPOSITIONS” is a collaborative exhibition of watercolours by Nancy Tingey inspired by the poetry of her friend of 40 years and artist in residence at Strathnairn, Jane Liddell-King. They met in Cambridge UK during childbirth classes while each was expecting her third child and Nancy’s husband was studying at the Scott Polar Research Institute. A graduate of Girton College, Liddell-King teaches English at Cambridge University. At Strathnairn Homestead Gallery 1, until March 11, Thursday to Sunday, 10am-4pm.

“THE Magic of Country” by David Lancashire presents over 50 painted and collage works connected to a larger body of over 200 works initiated on a long ago trip to the MacDonnell Ranges in Alice Springs. Nishi Gallery, facing Hotel Hotel, until March 11.

Timothy Phillips’ ‘Christmas 1997’, 2017.
FOUR new exhibitions are at M16 Artspace: “If you were buried for a thousand years even you would be priceless” by Alex Hobba, Patrick Larmour, Rosalind Lemoh, Darren Nedza, Timothy Phillips, Leila el Rayes, Camille Thomas; “Osculate” by Jenny Lyons; “It is. They are” by Lauren Butler; and in the Chutespace, “Knit together: shelter” by Helen Martin. At 21 Blaxland Crescent, Griffith, Wednesday to Sunday from 12pm-5pm until February 25.

“ANCESTRAL Journeys: Waters of the Past”, a multiple-media exhibition by Canberra artist Tracey Benson, incorporates a range of media, such as photography, video and augmented reality. It focuses on the waters of migration and connections to ancestral lands and places of significance. The video work is interwoven with music made from DNA sequencing, created by NZ/US based artist and programmer Josiah Jordan. CSIRO Discovery Centre, Clunies-Ross Street, Acton, until March 2.

INDONESIAN-Australian artist Dadang Christanto focuses on issues of heritage and collective memories as they are seen to sink beneath modern belief systems in “Lost”, at Nancy Sever Gallery, B-Block, Gorman Arts Centre, until March 4, Wednesday to Sunday 11am-5pm.

THE Artists’ Society of Canberra Contemporary are holding an exhibition at the Yarralumla Gallery, Weston Park Road (opposite the nursery). Exhibiting artists are Patricia Wheatstone, Arlene Williams, Peggy Spratt, Joan Costanzo, Cheryl Parkins, Susan Reynolds, Lynn Nicholls, Anne MeDermott, Rosemary Von Brehens, Elizabeth Rogers and Brigitte Schreiter. Opening by Harriet Elvin at 3pm, Sunday 25 February, all welcome. The show runs until March 23.

AUSTRALIAN National Capital Artists Gallery now has “Urban Instabilities”, paintings by Phil Page and Katie Hayne that focus in two dramatically different ways on Canberra’s urban landscape, at ANCA, 1 Rosevear Street, Dickson, to February 25.

“COLOUR In Canberra” artists are exhibiting at Canberra & Region Visitors Centre until February 28, when a closing auction of fine art and design raise funds and record the expertise of the group via the television and screen production, “Colour in Your Life”.  The guest speaker will be Graeme Stevenson. Canberra & Region Visitors Centre Regatta Point, 6pm, Wednesday, February 28.

CRAFT ACT has a solo exhibition by textile artist Sharon Peoples, “Death of a Craft”. In it she uses lace as “a vehicle to approach the withered nexus between the craft of lace and its design in traditional lacemaking”. At Craft and Design Centre in the North Building, Civic, alongside Craft ACT’s National Award Exhibition for early career artists, “Emerging Contemporaries”. Both run to Saturday, March 17.

CANBERRA Spinners and Weavers have their 50th anniversary show, “Crossing Threads”, curated by Meredith Hinchliffe, at Canberra Museum and Gallery, corner of London Circuit and Civic Square, to March 18.

GROUND-BREAKING Australian audio-video artist Angelica Mesiti has an exhibition of five major works, including the National Gallery of Australia’s most recent acquisition, “The Calling”, at the NGA until March.

“EIRENE Mort: A Livelihood” marks the 40th anniversary of Eirene Mort’s death at the age of 98. Mort was a prolific artist, collaborator, teacher, writer, family historian and a “new woman” pursuing a profession in the arts at the beginning of the 20th Century. Curated by Dale Middleby, this social history exhibition features an extraordinary array of artworks and artefacts created by her. Canberra Museum and Gallery, until February 25.

Work by Tony Ameneiro
“LIGHT of the Spirit” is an exhibition of paintings by Phillip Franklin, to be seen at Yarralumla Gallery, Cottage 1, Weston Park Road, Yarralumla until February 23, Tuesday to Friday 10am to 4pm and Saturday to Sunday 8am to 5pm.

PHOTOACCESS has two exhibitions: “Break It Up”, a visual and tactile installation by Karena Keys featuring an animation filled with pulsating and bulging golden blobs; and “The In Between”, in which Madeline Bishop explores the construction of women’s identities and the development of relationships within domestic space. Both at Manuka Arts Centre to February 25.

MARQUETRY artist Michael Retter and wood master Scott Mitchell, who first worked together some 20 years ago when fitting out an old railway carriage situated on Dick Smith’s property near Canberra, have collaborated again to break new ground, in an exhibition at Bungendore Wood Works Gallery, Kings Highway, Bungendore until February 27.

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Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

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