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Canberra Today 15°/20° | Friday, February 23, 2024 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

The Q’s new season ‘a big colourful mixtape of life’

Bottom in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” Photo Shelly Higgs

THE Q’s artistic director Jordan Best described the Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre’s 2024 season as “like a big colourful mixtape of life.”

Expanding on the theme at Monday night’s launch, Best said: “It’s got a little bit of everything that makes us tick – tunes that make you hum, jokes that make you snort, stories that tug at your heart, big flashy shows, tribute bands that are just like being there, deep stuff that makes you think, fun stuff that’s just plain silly, and the poetry of movement in dance.”

This year, she said, The Q would have four mainstage offerings from local artists, including “Happy Meals, Happy Kids” by Jade Breen, comedy show “Eulogiser Bunny”, solo show “The Will To Be” from Mark Salvestro and the musical “Ordinary Days”.

As well, The Q will support the development of four new works, from Caitlin Baker, Joanna Richards, Sarah Stewart and musician Alexander Unikowski.

The 2024 year opens with the return of comedian Garry Starr in “Greece Lightning”, where he will attempt to perform all of Greek Mythology in order to save his Hellenic homeland from economic ruin.

The Q The Locals season begins with “Happy Meals, Happy Kids”, described as “Breakfast Club on the edge of the apocalypse”, followed by “Eulogiser Bunny”, a  theatrical invitation to the funeral of Cameron Ribbons.

Catapult Dance in “Awkward”.

“The Alphabet of Awesome Science” professors return with their all-singing, all-dancing family show, “You are a Doughnut!”, then in March, Newcastle dance collective Catapult Dance bring the wit and wisdom of the socially awkward to in the “cringe-worthy” show, “Awkward”.

Star singer and songwriter Emma Donovan comes to The B in April with classic American R&B, soul and country, through the lens of her Noongar and Gumbaynggirr ancestry.

Another kids’ show is “Whalebone”, where Jens Altheimer blends humour, imagination and heart in a show bursting with dazzling visuals, playful inventions and a pinch of circus.

Following the Greek theme, A Slightly Isolated Dog brings “The Trojan War!”, the third instalment in its trilogy of “very sexy works”. In June, Bathurst’s Lingua Franca presents “Highway of Lost Hearts”, a regional story by Mary Anne Butler, with original music by Smith & Jones from Central West.

“The Will To Be” looks back to 1962 when homosexuality is illegal. Junior lecturer William O’Halloran has been dismissed from his position and  Mark Salvestro shows what he thinks.

Funny man Dave O’Neil is bringing his new stand-up show, “Overweight Lightweight”, after selling out the Melbourne International Comedy Festival this year.

Echo Theatre presents Joanna Murray-Smith’s play “Bombshells”, which strips back the facade of womanhood.

“The Sunshine Club”, directed by Wesley Enoch, is set in 1946 and tells the story of Aboriginal soldier Frank Doyle, complete with 28 songs composed by John Rodgers.

Four young New Yorkers search for love, fulfillment and cabs in Adam Gwon’s “Ordinary Days”, billed as an intimate, snappy and life-affirming musical.

“SLAP. BANG. KISS.” from playwright Dan Giovannoni tracks three young people whose stories kickstart a series of events none of them could have anticipated, transforming them into global symbols of revolution.

The Listies are back with “Make Some Noise!”, a comedy concert for humans aged 4-400.

Finally, in November, Echo Theatre presents “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, its inaugural Summer Shakespeare at The Q. It’s directed by Jordan Best and it’s one of her favourite plays.


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Helen Musa

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