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Andrew Fuhrmann

Andrew Fuhrmann

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews books and theatre. He is currently dance critic for the Age newspaper.

ABR Ian Potter Foundation Fellowship: 'Patrick White: A theatre of his own' by Andrew Fuhrmann

November 2013, no. 356 30 October 2013
In 2008, when Patrick White’s unfinished novella The Hanging Garden was liberated from obscurity, his biographer David Marr suggested that White might have returned to this ‘masterpiece in the making’ in 1982 had he not been beguiled by the ‘siren song’ of the theatre. This is the conventional narrative: flirtation and distraction, with Patrick White, Australia’s unambiguously great no ... (read more)

The Cherry Orchard

ABR Arts 28 August 2013
Writing to his brother in 1889, Anton Chekhov advised: ‘Try to be original and as clever as possible in your play, but do not be afraid of appearing stupid. Freethinking is essential, but to be a freethinker one must not be afraid to write nonsense.’ I thought a lot about nonsense during the Melbourne Theatre Company’s new production of Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard (1904). In this often t ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'Griffith Review 41' edited by Julianne Schultz

September 2013, no. 354 28 August 2013
And so Griffith Review is ten. It’s a credit to the publishing smarts of founding editor Julianne Schultz that the journal is now a fixture on the cultural landscape, alongside the country’s older literary journals. Griffith is the vantage not of the outraged so much as the frustrated, a reliable forum for passionate criticisms aimed at the inadequacy of political discourse in contemporary Aus ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'Mateship with Birds' by A.H. Chisholm

June 2013, no. 352 27 May 2013
Alec Hugh Chisholm, born in 1890 at Maryborough, is a legendary figure among Australian birders. He was a pioneering member of the Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union, later known as Birds Australia, now BirdLife Australia, and worked tirelessly to facilitate and promote ornithological research. He was a prolific author of journal articles, field notes, prefaces, reflective essays, and popular ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews Southerly, Vol. 72, No. 2, edited by Melissa Jane Hardie

May 2013, no. 351 28 April 2013
The critical essays collected in this current issue of Australia’s oldest literary journal make for frustrating reading. The theme is true crime, with a focus on the relationship between the sensational and the literary. Topics range from Underbelly Razor to the Jerilderie Letter to Schapelle Corby’s autobiography. Fascinating material, no doubt, but most of the contributions fail to engage an ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews A Clockwork Orange, directed by Alexandra Spencer-Jones

May 2013, no. 351 26 April 2013
You’ve got to admire the bolshie great yarbles of young British company Action to the Word. It must have taken much courage and not a little jejune presumption to dream of touring Anthony Burgess’s novel A Clockwork Orange (1962) to such capital city main-stage venues as Melbourne’s Malthouse Theatre, QPAC in Brisbane, and Canberra’s Theatre Centre. Such confidence is difficult to understa ... (read more)

'Hate': Stephen Sewell’s play about family hatred

April 2013, no. 350 26 March 2013
Stephen Sewell’s sixth play, Hate, first performed in 1988 and written with a bicentennial commission, is a monster of ambition. It is a play that seems to swallow whole the Australian story since 1788 and represent a family tragedy, one steeped in the ritual violence of an Ancient Greek myth or a perverted Easter drama. ... (read more)

Wild Surmise

December 2012–January 2013, no. 347 20 November 2012
Was there ever an Australian poet who drank so deep of that turbid spring, enthousiasmos, Aristotelian enthusiasm, as Dorothy Porter? From the grungy vitality of her early collections, to the exuberant embrace of popular genre fiction in her five verse novels, to the high, passionate tone of her lyrics, libretti, and later collections, she was never less than rhapsodic. Such enthusiasm is contagio ... (read more)
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