No Plain Jane

Theatre reviews and musings (mostly) from Adelaide

Tag: The Australian Ballet

Interview: Kym Begg and RightAct ’10

Harder to get an interview time with than Meow Meow, last Wednesday Kym and I finally met up to talk about all things RightAct ’10, the conference he is organising for ActNow in October.  The interview can be read here at Australian Stage Online.

I’m really excited about RightAct: everyone who I’ve met in the past couple of months who is involved is lovely and passionate and willing and wanting to share their friendship and knowledge and enthusiasm; there are some really amazing speakers involved; and I just love listening to passionate people talk and discuss and debate – when that’s about theatre I love it even more.

Click to enlarge.

If you want more information about the conference, visit the ActNow website, or to register for the workshops fill in the registration form.

Another thing which it is time to be excited for is 2011 Season launches.  Yes, they’ve begun!  Of course we get the Eastern states first, but that is just to whet the appetite, and I am very excited to know the Australian Ballet is bringing Stanton Welch Madame Butterfly to Adelaide, I haven’t seen it and cannot wait.   I have been lucky enough to be invited to BOTH of the State Theatre Company’s launches (yes, that’s right!  count them!  two!), with the launch proper on October 8, and the Red Carpet launch on October 14.

If you’re under 30 and want to come along to the Red Carpet launch, at the Banque in North Adelaide from 5:30-7:30, just rsvp to Robyn on 8415 5333 or email robyn at

I don’t know when any of the other Adelaide seasons (you know, because there are so many of them!) launch but I would appreciate invites tips!


Review: Don Quixote

In just an absolute credit to this company and this production, when I left all I wanted to do (after 1. Go back for acts 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10, and 2. Figure out how to break into the after party – needless to say, neither plan came to fruition) was to go and write about it.  And then when I started to write, I wrote 600 words in the blink of an eye, and still felt the absolute need to come back the next day and write more.  I don’t remember the last time I feel such an absolute positive crave to review.  Thank you.

The Australian Ballet presents The Dancers Company
Don Quixote
Brenton Langbein Theatre, Tanunda 31/07/10

The Dancers Company is the regional touring arm of the Australian Ballet, and this year’s tour of Don Quixote marks the 30thanniversary of the company.  Comprised of 26 students in their final years at the Australian Ballet School along with guest artists from the ballet itself, the company is much more than just a student production or graduate showcase.  To begin with, the students are contracted to the tour, and are paid as professional dancers.   The tour gives students an invaluable experience in working for a company and touring, and being exclusively regional, it gives audiences which are otherwise unlikely to see the ballet an opportunity.  (Even if, I’m guessing a not insignificant number of audience members at the Tununda performance were people who drove up from the city for the event.)

Dana Stephensen with company members. Photography by Jim McFarlane.

Because of this, a ballet like Don Quixote is perfect for the Dancers Company: it has lots of individual characters, medium sized groups, and pieces for the whole company.  And as well as being a beautiful ballet choreographically, the structure of the story leads for much acting on behalf of all performers, and the company amply rises to the occasion.

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Review: The Silver Rose

Presented by the Australian Ballet
At the Adelaide Festival Centre, July 17 2010

For at least the past six years, I have been seeing the Adelaide season of the Australian Ballet twice: once at the final dress rehearsal, and once during the season. Beyond the fun of being privy to the dress rehearsal, straining your ears to hear direction, I love seeing it twice, once from the Dress Circle and once from the Stalls, getting a chance to appreciate things you perhaps didn’t the first time, and the best result is when you are lucky enough to see two casts.

Wonderful costumes by Roger Kirk.

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