Category Archives: Theatre

Symphony in the Domain 2011 – for everyone?

After a rather successful year of blogging in 2010 I thought I’d be really lazy and start my 2011 at the end of January. Aren’t I thoughtful? The real reason for this total neglect would have something to do with house hunting, job searching and laziness. Oh, the joys of laziness! One day I’ll end up thinking I’m in some sort of misguided time warp as I dig around for more Doritos while dreaming about some imaginary past….but that’s for the future to dictate – let’s get on with now…

As for today, this glorious day of days, I’m going to bump out some well needed thoughts about what we consider to be “free” in this country, (in terms of live entertainment), and why it can really suck being educated in certain circumstances…

I love classical music. I grew up with it, I danced to it and I played it, (and one day I will eventually start playing again), but that doesn’t make me some glorified snob. For instance, I know pretty much nothing about rap music. This makes me uneducated and in certain communities I can be considered to be incredibly thick. Therefore, when you go to a free event like Symphony in the Domain and witness a drunken brawl break out in front of you over some guy’s “bitch” (quote), you tend to think why so many people are there in the first place. Is it because it’s free and they can drink or is it because they enjoy the wonder that is classical music? Who knows? I will say this – if you want to get pissed go to a pub. Fair enough?

Apart from the overcrowding and questionable audience members, the Sydney Symphony played superbly. It’s always a thrill to watch Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture performed live amongst a wonderful array of fireworks and cannon fire.

Another special addition this year was John Bell. What a brilliant orator that man is, reciting soliloquy’s from some of Shakespeare’s greatest works – it was a special touch to the evening and it was definitely worth waiting for…if you’re as into Shakespeare as I am.

In summation, I love these free events because I consider them to be incredibly important in our day and age where nothing comes for “free “. Afterall, it’s so very hard to keep ones head above water financially we tend to forget what true enjoyment really is. However, it’s so disappointing to see idiots getting a kick out of picking fights with security staff just for the hell of it while John Bell recites the St. Crispin’s Day speech from Shakespeare’s Henry V. But it’s a free event right?

Peace and Happy New Year,

– C

P.S. For all of those Opera lovers remember that next Saturday night is Opera in the Domain – be sure to get a good seat!  Also, be sure to check out the launch of the Chinese New Year celebrations which start next Friday. Head on down to Belmore Park from 6pm – 8pm. Both are free events so don’t miss them.

All photos taken by Shane Van Laar @



1 Comment

Filed under Daily opinions, Music, Theatre

A love letter from Norman Bates…

“A boy’s best friend is his mother…” – Norman Bates  

"Anthony Perkins" playing the role of Norman Bates in Hitchcock's "Psycho", (1960).

As screwed up as Sigmund Freud’s ‘Oedipal’ theory may seem, he was definitely onto something…  

A mother is seen to be this idealised figure to which every woman in her son’s life has to live up to. The same can be said with the relationship between fathers and daughters, but for some reason there is this massive stigma associated with boys desiring their mothers sexually. Goodness knows Hitchcock didn’t help with his creation of Mr. Norman Bates…  

"Poor Norman..." - Perkins playing the role of Norman Bates in Hitchcock's "Psycho", (1960).

Now that’s called motherly control…  

It’s similar to “Footfalls” by Samuel Beckett. The sound of May’s footsteps, the inferred haunting of her mother, and May’s self-imposed imprisonment is so interesting because it really enforces an idea about the mother figure’s subconscious control over us all and how it can become an entire reason for living. Ironically, it is just so – we exist because of our mothers. Nevertheless, if one is lucky enough to be given life one should make it their own, of course. Cut the umbilical cord already and find yourself – experience life for what it is.  

Beckett's 'muse' for twenty-five years - Billie Whitelaw playing the role of "May" in "Footfalls", (1976).

When it comes to the relationship of mothers and daughters there is this image relatedness to it or this kind of need to relate in order to understand oneself. A mother can be this figure to look up to, a figure to become in some way or other. You can see the strain in the relationship between some famous mothers and daughters in Hollywood, just take a look at what Liza Minnelli and Isabella Rossellini had to look up to. Judy Garland and Ingrid Bergman – these astoundingly huge figures of romance, glamour and success were their mothers. Who could live up to that?  

Paradoxically, both women tried to disassociate themselves from their motherly ties in order to prove their capability as actresses. It’s like this never-ending source of fuel for their careers – almost a vicious cycle of endless comparative judgement that never ceases to exist. In any case, they are both fabulous and dynamic in their own right.   

Then again…   

How successful would they have been without their colossal maternal images of super-stardom? That’s the real question…  

"Liza Minnelli" performing alongside her mother "Judy Garland", (1965).

As mentioned earlier with Hitchcock’s “Psycho“, Freud’s ‘Oedipal’ theory has been a key creative device for many television series such as the modern comedy “Weeds“. A big congratulations to the writers of this show – they truly pushed the limits of the mother-son relationship. Who can blame poor Shane Botwin? With a mother as attractive as that any young boy would be confused…   

Oedipal confusion: "Mary-Louise Parker" and "Alexander Gould" acting in the TV series "Weeds".

Freud alluded to the idea that in order to understand ourselves and our place in the world completely we have to understand our unconscious minds and repressed desires. Sure, you can say that he was an incestuous pervert as a kid, but his theories and practices are pretty popular and he certainly revolutionised psychiatry by founding the psychoanalytical school. On the other hand, perhaps he just pushed us all into over-thinking everything and thus worrying so much more than is necessary. 

Who knows what’s right for us but us, right?… 

"Sigmund Freud"...that fascinating German.


– C


Filed under Daily opinions, Film, Theatre, TV series

Berowra Musical Society (Inc.) presents: RENT…

Evocative, sexy and dynamic!

A huge congratulations to the entire cast and crew of this fabulous production – you’ve made Larson’s vision come alive…

In truth, this would have to be one of my favourite modern musicals. Not only does it challenge the audience’s perspectives through sheer visual spectacle, but its realism and its truth is so powerful that the story stays with you for a lifetime…

David Bleier (Roger) & Candice Jones (Mimi) - photos taken by Susie Stavert @

There is no greater pleasure than to see top quality live entertainment and tonight was definitely no exception.What better way to spend a rainy, winter’s evening ‘in’. The music and the story is so brilliant that, I bet anything, you’ll walk out of the theatre singing, “Five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred minutes!” over and over again…

Kate Campbell Westerway (Joanne) & Stephanie Broadbridge (Maureen) - photos taken by Susie Stavert @

Well done, Kelly Horrigan, for grouping together such an idyllic cast. The fiery red hair of Candice Jones playing Mimi, the deep, warm voice of Will Stavert playing the lovable Tom Collins and the perky, petite and delightful Mitchell Lagos playing the beautiful Angel – just to mention a few!

Mitchell Lagos (Angel) & Will Stavert (Collins) - photos taken by Susie Stavert @

It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening and I highly recommend that everyone heads on down to the Berowra Community Centre, (Gully Rd, Berowra), for either of the final two performances this Saturday!

(Saturday, 5th June) at 2:00pm & 8:00pm

La Vie Boehme!


– C

Leave a comment

Filed under Daily opinions, Theatre