Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Bamboo Moon: The Tale of Princess Kaguya

I loved Studio Ghibli's 2013 film, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, based on the ancient Japanese folktale, The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter. What a beautiful, honest and tragicyet equally upliftingfairytale about love and loss. And told with a particularly delicate minimalism which only Studio Ghibli can make sexy.

So when I heard local Darwin youth theatre company Corrugated Iron was putting on a new adaptation of the very same Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, I obviously got myself up in that hotness. Bamboo Moon was the title of the production, and it reshaped the classic story into a dynamic short live show.

It was put on as a free show with a three night run at the start of August. It was also staged outdoors in the wonderful dry season air, at the George Brown Botanic Gardens, and with excellent set design, props and costumes; it was a visually spectacular show.

That's a snap from a rehearsal. I played Haru, the son of the Emperor, a very important and pretty cool guy, whose only real flaw is that he enjoys a wee bit of violence and war. Doh! There also is Taylor who played the eponymous Princess Kaguya and Tahlia who was my guard and lieutenant.

There's me on the night. In character. Feeling things. Emotions. Drama. Acting.

That's some of the other actors being funny on stage. Don't worry, they were also in character.

As a dynamic outdoor youth performance, this show of course also included music, dance and circus! Look bamboo spirits on stilts!

And aerialist moon people!

Unfortunately there are far more wonderful images of all these people than I can include here, but you can have a look at the show's photo gallery on the Corrugated Iron website.

Finally I want to congratulate the dedicated crew, some of whom can be seen here...

...and the enormously friendly extended cast, some of whom can be seen here:

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Darwin Fringe Show: Vaudeville Variety starring Chaplin

Here's the facts.

The Darwin Fringe Festival was a month ago. It was good. I got to perform in two shows. One of them was "VAUDEVILLE VARIETY STARRING CHAPLIN".

It was... well, it was what it sounds like. A madhat Vaudeville-inspired couple of hours of comedy, song, slapstick and skits. It was produced by an insane chap who I shall refer to simply as Russell "Rusty Rhubarb" Smith, and directed by a terrific gentleman called Tony Rive.

Russell "Rusty Rhubarb" Smith (shown above) was the centrepiece of the evening, singing and larking through a variety of comedy bits. One of these was a slapstick restaurant skit starring the titular, aforementioned and again shown above Charlie Chaplin, played by Russell "Rusty Rhubarb" Smith.

That photo displays a few other characters from the very same skit: (left to right) Haylee the gangster, Isaac the waiter, Damon the gangster, and me! I was the generically named "Male Lover". In this case referring to the facts that I was A) a lover and B) of the male gender, as opposed to my defining character feature being that I "love males".

This one's a snap from the night itself (thanks videographer Nathaniel Kelly!) in which Russell "Rusty Rhubarb" Smith and I can be seen performing the famous Abbott and Costello skit, Who's on first. Beast of a piece to learn, but it's mega funny.

Thanks to all of the wonderful cast and crew and brilliant musicians and everyone who came to see it. A great experience.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Dance Academy film review

Dance Academy was a pretty big hit among people my age when it aired on Australia's ABC TV a few years back. Now they've made it into a full-fledged movie. Of course I was excited to see it and record a little podcast discussion about it.

Listen above or click here to find more episodes of You Are What You Watch.

Seabreeze Festival antics

A few days ago the annual Seabreeze Festival was held at the Nightcliff foreshore in Darwin. This year my pimp Jennifer Dowling roped me into performing some monologues from the Spoken Word Stage, which she ran masterfully with a varied lineup of poets, singers and storytellers.

The canopy buckles under the strong breeze as honoured guest speaker Kate Holden shares some words

It was a lovely afternoon. Basically the Seabreeze Festival is just such a brilliant event. The weather's great this time of year, and the setting is superb; blue sky and blue ocean was our exotic backdrop.

The palm trees buckle under the strong breeze as myself says things

I mostly shared some monologues which I already had pretty much learned from previous projects, which were primarily by Shakespeare and Tom Stoppard.

The night concluded with an excellent excerpt from a show by Jazmine Productions

Cheers and congrats to JD and Samara Erlandson and everyone involved, good times.

Sideshow Sound does Rogue One Score Guide

I'm an enormous fan of so many podcasts, and Sideshow Sound Radio is one of the big ones. One of their coolest projects is a series of "Score Guide" episodes, in which they present and discuss the entirity of a beloved soundtrack, including clever insights and a range of opinions. To make these episodes hosts Wendell Jones and William Dodson regularly seek contributions from listeners. So when I heard they were doing a new Score Guide on Michael Giacchino's fabulous Rogue One, I thought I'd better send something in.

The episode is out today, and it's excellent, and sure enough you can hear a little bit of me towards the end. Here's a link to the show.

I find these podcasts so enjoyable and relaxing; it feels like listening to a full album of superb music with other people who love it just as much as I do. Which is very special because honestly, how many people do you come across in everyday life who listen to film soundtracks every day?

Not many.

Monday, 17 April 2017

Podcasting Doctor Who's 10th Season

The new season of Doctor Who has begun, and so returneth the Doctor Who recap podcast A Bad Case of Loving Who.

On this first episode I'm joined by regular co-host Chris to talk about the latest episode and some general issues surrounding the show. Listen below, or find out more about the podcast and all of its previous episodes over here.

Escucha"Season 10, Episode 1: "The Pilot"" en Spreaker.

It should be a fun season, and we'll likely be having a few guests dropping in along the way. Geronimo etc!