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Arts Features

Posted 14 Sep 2016 @ 11:21am

Henry Rollins is a dangerous man. Over the course of a career spanning more than three decades, the punk rock icon has systematically set his sights on a thousand different forms of authority, all the while resisting the conformist pull of the very industry he manages to make a living from. There are a lot of so-called rebels out there who look like children’s show hosts next to Rollins, and...

Posted 8 Sep 2016 @ 2:34pm

“God, her writing!” Brett Cousins is on the phone enthusing about 29-year-old writer Clare Barron, likening her to the theatre equivalent of Lena Dunham. “She's of that generation of women writing amazing stuff and she has such a fresh voice and absolutely incredible play,” the theatre director says.

 

Just like New Yorker Dunham, the creator, writer and star of the HBO series...

Posted 8 Sep 2016 @ 2:32pm

Not meaning to be salacious, but it’s all sexy and disruptive over at Malthouse. Malthouse’s 2017 program picks up the 2016 trend of theatre as provocateur and bolts with it. The fact that the company’s program is the antithesis of staid theatre is, in no small degree, due to Malthouse’s artistic director Matthew Lutton’s deft and bold leadership.

 

Lutton is...

Posted 8 Sep 2016 @ 10:17am

The often confronting and ever-exciting Melbourne Underground Film Festival celebrates a whopping 17 years of shock and awe in 2016. For filmmaker, founder and festival director Richard Wolstencroft, the independent spirit of the experimental and high-octane genre features that populate its bounds rage stronger than ever.

 

Wolstencroft worked at Beat Magazine around 1991, and...

Posted 7 Sep 2016 @ 3:12pm

Welcome to the Beat's weekly rundown of what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. This just in: TOO MANY MOVIES. There's nine films coming out on Thursday, and I am but one man.

 

As such, your recommended dose of five is below, and it's a shame, really, given I have had to skip four. The first two honourable mentions are Aussie flicks deserving of your...

Posted 31 Aug 2016 @ 1:10pm

Dance is often considered to be a fairly traditional artform – but one French production, opening in Melbourne this week, is set to change the way we see dance, and take it into the future.

 

Pixel, an hour-long immersive dance show co-created by Mourad Merzouki, one of France's most prolific choreographers, alongside Adrien Mondot and Claire Bardainne, two innovative digital...

Posted 31 Aug 2016 @ 1:08pm

Nine years into hosting the Heart of St Kilda Concert at the Palais Theatre, Australian comedian and personality Brian Nankervis still remembers vividly what drew him to support the Sacred Heart Mission.

 

“I was doing a show at a school out in Ivanhoe, a well-to-do school, and I got chatting to a guy after the show and it was close to Christmas so I asked him what his plans were...

Posted 31 Aug 2016 @ 1:05pm

In 2013, Michael McIntyre was revealed to be the world’s highest-grossing comedian, and his popularity certainly hasn’t waned since then.

 

Last year he sold out London’s 20,000-capacity O2 Arena an astounding ten nights in a row. Such widespread approval could easily go to one’s head, but McIntyre’s success hasn’t alienated him from his core fan base. His stand-up isn’t...

Posted 31 Aug 2016 @ 12:49pm

Welcome to Beat's weekly rundown of what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. My bugbear of unresolved problems on a script level comes roaring back this week, along with some refreshing horror and painterly drama.

 

Six films again? Goodness, I spoil you. To be fair, there's seven releases, but ...

Posted 30 Aug 2016 @ 3:04pm

Jasper Jones is knocking at our windows.

 

In the past two years alone, Craig Silvey’s iconic novel - being hailed as Australia’s answer to To Kill A Mockingbird - has been turned into a film, added to the VCE booklist and adapted into not one, but three stage productions. Adapted and scripted by local playwright Kate Mulvany, Jasper Jones is Melbourne Theatre Company’s latest...

Posted 26 Aug 2016 @ 12:00pm

Melbourne has undergone a bold stylistic change over the past few years. Whether people have caved into the endemic hipster movement or just undergone a contemporary shift, hairstyles and haircut requests have ranged from trendy to peculiar to downright weird. But that’s us, and that’s what we’re supposed to do, and our barber shops have been forced to pull out all the stops to respond. Some...

Posted 26 Aug 2016 @ 11:30am

The incredibly talented musician, beatboxer, humourist and tech-wiz Beardyman – real name Darren Foreman – is no stranger to a challenge. He's embraced a multitude of creative trials, leaving an impressive legacy and countless amazed audiences in his path.

 

He'll be coming to Australia with his 'One Album Per Hour' tour, in which he'll undertake the gargantuan task of completely...

Posted 26 Aug 2016 @ 9:47am

“It’s ludicrous, the amount of blood going on stage,” explains Eddie Perfect of The Beast, preparing to stage his black comedy at the Sydney Opera House before it hits Melbourne. It’s a unique sales pitch for a unique play. But how did it come to this?

 

The origins of The Beast date back to when Perfect lived in Healesville. He recalls a big, save-the-date dinner party between...

Posted 17 Aug 2016 @ 1:52pm

The Korean Film Festival In Australia (KOFFIA) is back and bigger than ever for its seventh year running with a program busting at the seams covering everything from blockbuster cinema to arthouse and rom-coms, all screened with English subtitles. To help wade through the sprawling lineup, KOFFIA artistic director David Park introduces his five hottest picks of the festival.

 

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Posted 17 Aug 2016 @ 11:55am

Abe Forsythe is on stage, his extensive ensemble cast around him. Appropriately for the director's latest feature, the darkly hilarious Down Under, it's screening at the Comedy Theatre as part of the Melbourne International Film Festival's Centrepiece Gala. Moments earlier MIFF Artistic Director Michelle Carey had explained to the 800 gathered that the point of the night was “celebrating the...

Posted 10 Aug 2016 @ 12:14pm

Get ready to throw away every preconception you might have about poetry when you read Dorothy Porter’s work. The late Aussie poet’s work isn’t the stuff of daffodils and clouds – it’s about flesh, sweat, sex, passion, love, obsession, murder, intrigue and death. Read Porter’s workon public transport and you risk blushing, but it’s as beautiful and evocative as it is erotic – and now Kiwi...

Posted 10 Aug 2016 @ 10:55am

Filmmaker and producer Mitu Bhowmick Lange, the director of this year’s Indian Film Festival, believes that art can bridge cultural gaps. With that in mind, she co-founded the Bollywood and Beyond Film Festival, is a director of Mind Blowing Films (a specialist film distributor for Indian cinema and now producer for both Bollywood and Beyond and the Indian Film Festival of...

Posted 10 Aug 2016 @ 10:53am

Every year since 2014 the Glow Winter Arts Festival has featured something so wild that patrons still discuss it. In the first year, UK’s Exxopolis Luminarium took over the car park of the roof of the Jam Factory with 3000 square metres of plastic molded into an illuminated, pulsating labyrinth. Last year, the car park behind Coles and Woolies in Prahran became a hotspot when it...

Posted 10 Aug 2016 @ 10:51am

Wit Incorporated are presenting what might be the first ever gender-flipped casting of Shakespeare’s most famous tragedy. Beat chats with Company Manager Jennifer Piper about what sets their production apart on the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death.

 

Why swap genders in Macbeth?
 
Why not? It seems trite, but there's really no good reason not to mess with the...

Posted 9 Aug 2016 @ 1:22pm

The hallowed Melbourne Festival returns once more for 2016, under the guidance of newly instated Festival Director Jonathan Holloway. While the program remains as eclectic and creatively fulfilling as ever, littered with special events and oddities, this year's festival will be remembered as a celebration of our city – of all its nooks and crannies,  hidden secrets and exploratory nature – in...

Posted 4 Aug 2016 @ 1:35pm

Welcome to Beat's weekly rundown of what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. Hey, you know how you got a bonus film last week? Well, now I'm taxing you. Or, more accurately, there's only four films out this week.

 

I'm making up the shortfall with a SURPRISE GUEST that shows how deeply current I am. Witness me.

 

Thing is, for me, there's only...

Posted 3 Aug 2016 @ 3:20pm

When the Police Academy film series concluded in 1994, Michael Winslow had captivated the world with his bewildering yet stunning articulations. Cadet Larvell Jones was a mischievous police officer who used his devious vocality to swindle criminals, authoritarians and innocent citizens alike. It was flabbergasting to say the least, but what would become of this fascinating persona in the films...

Posted 27 Jul 2016 @ 2:49pm

When Amy Winehouse died in 2011 from alcohol poisoning, thereby becoming another victim of the fabled '27 Club', there was an outpouring of grief and a spate of finger pointing. The blame game was amplified with the release of Asif Kapadia’s 2015 documentary Amy. To what degree were her dad Mitch Winehouse and members of management culpable? Would Winehouse have...

Posted 27 Jul 2016 @ 11:21am

Welcome to Beat's weekly rundown of what's hot in the coming seven days of cinematic releases. Another key franchise entry for the year takes to the silver screen this week, along with classic adaptations that make this cycle truly anachronistic.

 

With a timeline spanning from 18th century England to the Wild Wild East, the present day and the distant future, there's...

Posted 27 Jul 2016 @ 10:57am

Mary Ann Evans isn't a name that would ring a bell for many folks out there today. Come to that, the name George Eliot might reward you with a fair share of blank stares despite having penned one of our classic fictions, Middlemarch (indeed, Julian Barnes rates it as likely the greatest English novel). But Eliot was himself a fiction, a pseudonym employed by Evans to be taken more seriously by...

Posted 20 Jul 2016 @ 1:11pm

Booze and video games. As the old saying goes, it's the simple things in life. As if crushing your mates in a round of Mortal Kombat wasn't satisfying enough, couple that with a few beverages and you've got yourself a recipe for one hell of a good time. With that in mind, we're celebrating ACMI's upcoming Retrolympiad by compiling the very best places to share a pint over some pixels with Beat...

Posted 20 Jul 2016 @ 11:27am

David Icke is a man whose name is often accompanied by controversy. Once a professional footballer turned sports commentator, Icke now focuses his energy on lifting the veil of perceived common knowledge. After spending a quarter of a century researching and writing in excess of 20 publications, Icke is coming to Australia as part of his World Wide Wake Up tour.

 

"What I've been...

Posted 15 Jul 2016 @ 1:58pm

Imagine a world without advertising. In our image and slogan saturated, brand obsessed world, so conditioned to it being a part of the fabric of our lives, could we even consider it? Visual artists Aphrodite Feros-Fooke and Chase Burns have envisaged a world where advertising is illegal (capitalism, block your ears) for their piece The Detour. “It's an intimate roaming projection performance...

Posted 15 Jul 2016 @ 1:51pm

“Imagine a virtual reality experience that goes beyond sight and sound, to stimulate your every sense and propel you back in time!" Indeed, once upon a time – 1998, in fact – Sovereign Hill was advertised as the "ultimate in virtual reality". Ballarat's open-air museum was apparently the best we could do back then. You'll be glad to know the technology has come a long way since, and, according...

Posted 14 Jul 2016 @ 4:56pm

In its 65th year, Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) will celebrate a total of 344 films from around the globe. The program, including 244 features, 91 shorts and nine virtual reality experiences, blends brand new technologies, much-adored classics and the best of the best in current cinema.

 

Acting as the largest annual showcase of both emerging and established...

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