Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Marclay on show

On the way to work today I dropped in at ACMI to see the Replay Marclay exhibition. I can't recommend it strongly enough.

Christian Marclay is an American video artist who has produced some rivetting works. The work I was seeking out was Video Quartet, which I had seen last year at the Tate Modern and was transfixed by: it's a collection of fragments from films from the last 70-odd years. They are projected onto four screens, side-by-side, and (nearly) all the excerpts show some form of musical performance (singing, playing an instrument, dancing, conducting). The whole thing is edited together in such a clever way, excerpts often juxtaposed with seemingly unrelated other ones, yet somehow the mix works in a compelling way.

The other stand-out work is Telephones, again using clips from old films showing actors using the phone. Despite the fact that the clips come from a disparity of films the overall effect is of one long narrative, one long conversation. I laughed out loud often during this film.

I fully intend to revisit this extraordinary exhibition.

One warning: make sure you give your eyes time to adjust to the low light levels in the exhibition space. I nearly walked into a wall thinking it was a doorway.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

What a relief

After what seems like an interminable lead-up yesterday's election had a most satisfactory result. Not only Howard gone, but Costello is saying he will not pursue the leadership. Although there's still Turnbull, Abbott, Ruddock, Downer ...

Sitting in front of the ABC last night it took me a little while to realise what was actually happening, and a little bit longer to believe it. But when it sank in I was overjoyed.

Up early this morning to speed off to St John's Southgate to sing the final chorale for Bach's Es reißet euch ein Schrecklich Ende, which was translated in the order of service as "A horrible end will carry you off". Most appropriate we thought.

The tenor who sang was new to St John's - Robert Macfarlane, a young man from Adelaide who was very impressive. Jerzy Kozlowski was wonderful in his aria accompanied by rapid, almost demented, scales on the trumpet. And Chris Mason sang his recit beautifully. Even the orchestra was beautiful!

I could only pay a fleeting visit to Mum today as I had to race off early to come to work, which has been, as expected, fairly busy.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Please vote

Rehearsal this week for Messiah at St Peter's Eastern Hill (Dec 7 and 8 if you're interested) and evening shift on Wednesday.

The lead up to this election seems to have been endless but at last it's here. Work today was very quiet - the lull before the storm, I suppose - but earlier in the week we were fairly busy.

On Sunday morning I'll be singing at St John's Southgate; we've not had any rehearsal for this one as the choir is only singing the final chorale which we can run through beforehand.

And I'm working on Sunday evening, which will probably be quite busy. Let's hope it's a satisfactory result and we finally get rid of Howard and his minions. I won't mind working so much if we do.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

A bit of fun

Watch the boy in the middle - he's obviously the choreographer.

Super-duper film technology rocks

This afternoon after work I made my way down to the Astor in Windsor to see Ridley Scott's final cut of Blade Runner. It's a while since I've seen the film (I think my DVD version went in the last but one burglary) so I couldn't really identify the couple of new scenes he's added. The film has been cleaned up and was projected using super HD digital projection - what an eye-opener. Steady as a rock, no jumps, no scratches and a crystal-clear soundtrack. A shame it's only on for four nights.

In other news DG came down on Tuesday and we met for dinner in Victoria Street. He seems to be doing well in Newstead and I'm planning a little trip there in a couple of weeks.

Tat got back last week - I haven't seen her yet, but it sounds as if she had a good trip.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

More soon

Friday, November 09, 2007

End of the week


A couple of Tuesdays ago we went to a fabulous performance of Schubert's Winterreise given by Steve Davislim and Anthony Romaniuk at Melba Hall. Davislim's voice is very impressive and his performance, while a little over the top at times, was effective; the only carp I have is that he sang holding the music. His constant referral to the printed page was an interruption to the communication between performer and audience that is vital for a work like this. The evening began with a most enjoyable performance of Schubert's Rosamunde quartet by the Tim Alley Quartet.

Before the concert I met P&B at the delightful and out-of-the-way Yamato restaurant where we had some very tasty food.

Rehearsals for the Gloriana concert continue reasonably well, though last week there were a few too many people missing and it felt harder than it had the previous week.

Last week I caught up with BN who is now at home after spending some time in hospital having a partial hip replacement. She seems to be coping well at home, though not keen on doing her exercises. It was nice to catch up and I hope to get there again soon.

B was in Sydney and Nowra for much of the previous week - I caught up with him last night when I went for dinner. P had made a rather delicious rack-off lamb with roast potato and pumpkin, plus a salad which I've just realised I didn't eat. The piece de resistance was B's yummy strawberry ice-cream.

Work continues - roll on the election.