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Dina Ross

Dina Ross

Dina Ross is an award-winning playwright and commentator. Her latest play 'Six Ways to say Goodbye' is published by the Australian Script Centre.

The Realistic Joneses (Red Stitch Actors' Theatre)

ABR Arts 01 May 2017
Ah, Will Eno. The poet of the people, chronicler of twenty-first century angst, humorist, satirist, famously labelled ‘a Samuel Beckett for the Jon Stewart generation’, is back in dazzling form. The Realistic Joneses showcases Eno to the power of ten as he holds up a mirror to Middle America and makes us laugh and cry (often simultaneously). Readers, skip this review if you will – just book ... (read more)

Dina Ross reviews 'The Love of a Bad Man' by Laura Elizabeth Woollett

November 2016, no. 386 28 October 2016
Throughout history, women have been seduced by men who are mad, bad, and dangerous to know. Many of the world’s most notorious murderers and con artists have attracted loyal, besotted, and often very young female accomplices. The twelve stories in Laura Elizabeth Woollett’s collection, spanning the twentieth century, evoke the lives of real women who were all sucked into an abyss of murder, fr ... (read more)

Dina Ross reviews 'The Amazing Mrs. Livesey' by Freda Marnie Nicholl

June–July 2016, no. 382 24 May 2016
Ethel Livesey was a piece of work. By the time she stood trial in 1946, she had already served several terms in prison. The serial fraudster had accumulated more than forty aliases, married eight times (twice bigamously), borne four children to different men, and divorced four times. She fleeced shopkeepers, business owners, society élite – and her husbands – during a spectacular career as a ... (read more)

Middletown (Red Stitch)

ABR Arts 23 November 2015
'Middletown. Population: stable,' says the cop on patrol, addressing the audience. 'The main street is called Main Street. The side streets are named after trees ... Things are fairly predictable. People come, people go. Crying, by the way, in both directions.' Middletown. Muddletown. Everytown. The cop's monologue sets up the premise for this play. For the next few hours we will be immersed in th ... (read more)

Dead Centre and Sea Wall (Red Stitch)

ABR Arts 20 July 2015
When Red Stitch premièred Tom Holloway’s Red Sky Morning a few years ago, it was clear that Australian theatre was witnessing the birth of a significant dramatic voice. Here were a series of interlinked monologues rich in poetic intensity, mixing Aussie vernacular with a haunting lyricism that sung of the earth and was rooted in a tangible sense of place. Holloway has gone on to a stellar ca ... (read more)

The Flick (Red Stitch)

ABR Arts 04 May 2015
It is ironic that Annie Baker’s 2014 Pulitzer-Prize winning play about one of the last American cinemas to use a 35-millimeter projector is being revived by Red Stitch, whose theatre is opposite The Astor, the classic Melbourne cinema that was recently sold and will soon be transformed into a twenty-first century digital ‘palace’. Red Stitch first performed The Flick last year, as part of t ... (read more)

Dina Ross reviews 'Bert: The story of Australia’s favourite TV star' by Graeme Blundell

January-February 2015, no. 368 01 January 2015
In the world of Australian popular entertainment, few personalities are more prominent than Bert Newton. Since the 1950s he has been a presence on radio and television, as announcer, talk show host, compère, interviewer, and musical comedy star. Love him or loathe him, ‘Old Moonface’ has impressed as much for his ability to survive the ups and downs of showbiz politics as for his body of work ... (read more)

Dina Ross reviews 'Jean Galbraith: Writer in a valley' by Meredith Fletcher

November 2014, no. 366 01 November 2014
The last photographs taken of Jean Galbraith show a wrinkled woman in her eighties, with wispy hair pulled back in a bun, wearing round tortoiseshell spectacles, thick stockings, and sensible shoes – the kind of person you might expect to see serving behind the counter of a country post office early last century, or pouring endless cups of tea at church fêtes. Yet her unprepossessing appearance ... (read more)

Dina Ross reviews 'A Pianist’s A–Z: A piano lover’s reader' by Alfred Brendel with Michael Morley

October 2014, no. 365 01 October 2014
The concert pianist Alfred Brendel is one of the leading twentieth-century interpreters of music, with a special interest in the German repertoire. When he retired in 2008 after six decades of performing, he did so not through loss of stamina, but because of crippling arthritis in his hands. Brendel continues, at eighty-three, to teach, lecture, and write. (His poetry collection, Playing the Human ... (read more)

The Good Person of Szechuan (Malthouse Theatre)

ABR Arts 04 July 2014
When Brecht wrote The Good Person of Szechuan (1939–42), he had been influenced by the colour and brashness of Chinese theatre, whose archetypal heroes and villains underpinned his concept of the Alienation Effect. Brecht, ever the political theorist, wasn’t interested in characters with whom the audience empathised, or of employing Stanislavski-based acting techniques that strove to reach emo ... (read more)
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