Cry Jailolo

September 25, 2015 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, LIFE, THEATRE, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

Oz Asia Festival, “Cry Jailolo” (Dunstan Playhouse, Festival Theatre, Adelaide) (24/9/15) Jailolo, part of the Indonesian archipelago, has coughed-up a troupe of seven fit young men who (choreographed by Eko Supriyanto) present a genuinely novel dance sequence based on indigenous tribal myth from North Malaku, with modern overtones of environmental threat to a pristine local environment.  Sinuous, mesmerizing, ephemeral and fluid, involving moves that are both new and alien, this is an interpretation that intrigues and engages lovers of dance and agnostics alike.  Their unusual motion, use of light and shade, stillness, subtle use of hand and foot for percussion, and sense of space,…

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Theatre of Embarrassment

September 5, 2015 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | LIFE, THEATRE |

Brent went home for his guitar (Photo Radio Times)

A very anglo-saxon form of comedy, the Theatre of Embarrassment makes one squirm as well as laugh, and the laugh is often through gritted teeth.  It is hard to watch and even harder to believe, yet it unfolds before your very eyes, arch and formal as Kabuki, visceral as a knife-fight in an alleyway. When Norman Gunston asks Warren Beatty if “it’s true Miss Carly Simon wrote that song about you…?…The Impossible Dream…?” or mentions en passant to an interrupting Linda McCartney “It’s funny, you know, you don’t look Japanese,” you are at The Theatre. When Larry and Cheryl David,…

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The Adelaide Ring

August 23, 2015 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Opera, THEATRE, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS, WAGNER |

(2004: Recording 2012) The Varnished Culture is leery of greatest hits records.  Everyone’s CD cupboard bursts with them, especially those replenished after an insurance claim.  Yet with The Ring, one can make an exception.  Especially when this is the only record of the sublime Adelaide production seen in 2004, when little Adelaide’s gallant attempt to simulate Bayreuth was almost scuttled by a relatively new State Government (which is still the State Government) quibbling about funding.  Thankfully, a Commonwealth Grant to the Melba Foundation cleared the way. The Adelaide Ring was the first ‘ground up’ production in Australia and many feared it would be…

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Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

August 16, 2015 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | THEATRE, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Dir. Geoff Brittain) Adelaide University Theatre Guild, 15 August 2015 This ivy-league Greek tragedy, a superb three-act melodrama by Edward Albee, was filmed in 1966 by Mike Nicholls, using camera-men suspended from ropes to achieve the claustrophobic intimacy the piece requires. The action occurs in the sprawling living room of George and Martha, a New England University history professor and his wife, the daughter of the Vice Chancellor.  A Saturday evening faculty party has been in swing and Martha wants to party on, inviting newbies Nick and Honey back to their house.  As the night unfolds, Mario-Lanza-amounts of liquor take effect, tempers flare, and secrets are…

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Much Ado About Nothing

May 3, 2015 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | THEATRE, Ulalume |

"This looks not like a nuptial."

(W. Shakespeare) (1598) (Dir. Kenneth Branagh) (1993) (Dir. Megan Dansie) (Theatre Guild, 2 May 2015) This is not the Bard’s best comedy but it endures as pure rollicking farce, with Beatrice and Benedick as a prototype Martha and George from Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?  TVC quite likes the Kenneth Branagh film with him and ex wife Emma Thompson as the leads, staged in Tuscany with a roving, loving camera.  And on Saturday last, we walked our pleurisy into the night and caught the nice production at the Adelaide Theatre Guild.  Bronwyn Palmer and Adam Tuominen starred as the verbally-crossed lovers…

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