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The Update - September 25, 2018

ABR Arts 25 September 2018

The Update - September 25, 2018

ABR Arts 25 September 2018

AA Cover

Recent ABR Arts reviews:

Peter Grimes (Brisbane Festival) ★★★★1/2
Spartacus (The Australian Ballet) ★★★
Evita (Opera Australia) ★★★
Accidental Death of an Anarchist (Sydney Theatre Company) ★★1/2
Encore! The Killing of A Sacred Deer (Madman Films) ★★★
Encore! The Merchant of Venice (Bell Shakespeare) ★★★★★

Coming Up in ABR Arts?

Upcoming ABR ArtsUpcoming in ABR Arts: Michael Halliwell on Metamorphosis; Susan Lever on I'm Not Running; and Fiona Spitzkowsky on Prize Fighter.


There’s plenty of quality ahead in ABR Arts. Michael Halliwell is heading to Metamorphosis by the Opera Queensland; Susan Lever is reviewing I'm Not Running, directed by Neil Armfield (Candy) at the National Theatre in the UK; and our new reviewer Fiona Spitzkowsky is attending Prize Fighter, a combination of boxing and theatre at the Northcote Town Hall. 


Calibre Essay Prize

 Calibre Prize 2018

Australia’s oldest and most prestigious essay prize, the $7,500 Calibre Essay Prize, remains open until 14 January 2019. The total prize money will be awarded across two chosen winners, with $5,000 going to first place and $2,500 going to second – both of which will be published in full in the magazine. Anyone writing in English is eligible, and ABR welcomes creative non-fiction essays of any kinds: the personal or political, literary or speculative, traditional or experimental.

To judge Calibre, ABR Editor Peter Rose will be joined by celebrated authors J.M. Coetzee and Anna Funder.

For more information on the 2019 Calibre Essay Prize, visit our information page. For information about judges click here, or for past winners click here.


$100,000 Ian Potter Moving Image Commission

 Ian Potter Moving Image Commission

The Ian Potter Cultural Trust and the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) are calling for submissions for the 2020 Ian Potter Moving Image Commission. The chosen applicant will receive $100,000 and will be given professional support covering highly specialised curatorial, production, and presentation expertise from ACMI. 

Expressions of interest for the $100,000 commission must be focused on the moving image, as well as be designed for future exhibition within a gallery. The project outlined can be created either individually or collaboratively, with no restrictions on the duration or number of channels used. Craig Connelly, Chief Executive Officer of The Ian Potter Cultural Trust, said ‘We are proud to support this wonderful opportunity for artists interested in exploring the moving image as an art form outside the conventions of cinema or documentary.’

The work chosen by the judging panel – chaired by ACMI Director and CEO Katrina Sedgwick – will première at ACMI in 2020 as part of the company’s international exhibition program.

Applications for the 2020 Ian Potter Moving Image Commission close midnight Sunday 28 October. For more information, visit the Ian Potter Moving Image Commission website.


Alexander Theatre Reopens

 Paul GrabowskiMonash Academy of Performing Arts Executive Director Professor Paul Grabowsky AO outside the new Alexander Theatre (photo supplied)


After a reopening ceremony on Tuesday night 11 October, The Alexander Theatre at Monash University is officially back in the public sphere, having been under restoration since 2016. First opened in 1967, The Alexander Theatre has served the public and the Monash community for half a century, with many notable productions along the way. The refurbished theatre is now the main attraction of Monash’s new Ian Potter Centre for Performing Arts, which also features a 130-seat Sound Gallery and a 200-seat Jazz Club. The new design by Peter Elliott Architecture revisits the original plans for the theatre, some of which were unrealised due to a lack of initial funds. The project was financed with $5 million from the Ian Potter Foundation and $10 million from the Victorian government.


David Williamson on his new play, Nearer the Gods

Playwright David WilliamsonPlaywright David WilliamsonNearer the Gods, a new Queensland Theatre play by playwright David Williamson, is a bleak drama–comedy looking at the significance of great human achievements. Focusing on Isaac Newton and his laws of motion, Williamson follows young astronomer Edmund Halley as he tries to wrest these ideas from the scientist’s capricious mind.

‘Newton might have been brilliant, but he was also quite mad,’ said David Williamson. ‘Nearer the Gods is about brilliance and bastardry. The toxic disconnect between our highest and basest potentials. The better angels of our nature always in danger of being ripped down by the crocodile lurking in our brainstem.’

Maggie Haining will review the production for ABR Arts.

Thanks to Queensland Theatre, two new or renewing subscribers can win double pass to Nearer the Gods at the Billie Brown Theatre, showing 6 October to 3 November. Find out more below.


KYD New Critic Award 2019

 The KYD New Critic Award 2019 is now open (photo via Kill Your Darlings)The KYD New Critic Award 2019 is now open (photo via Kill Your Darlings)


Applications for the 2019 Kill Your Darlings New Critic Award, now in its third year, are now open. The award assists in the vocational development of a critic early in his or her career and is open to those working in all fields of arts and culture. The winner will receive $3,000 in prize money, comprised of $1,000 in cash and five commissioned long-form columns to be staggered throughout 2019. Two runners-up will be invited to ‘pitch’ for publication in KYD throughout the year. The judges for the 2019 Award are Kill Your Darlings Editor Alan Vaarwerk and 2018 New Critic winner Kylie Maslen.

Find out more on the KYD website. Entries are open from now until 2 November 2018.

Australian Short Story Festival returns to Perth

The Australian Short Story Festival returns to Perth over the weekend of 19–21 October, and will feature more than thirty writers, actors, musicians, and storytellers. Interstate guests include Laura Elvery (Trick of the Light) and Jolley Prize winner Jennifer Down (Our Magic Hour, Pulse Points) and acclaimed writer and inaugural Jolley prize winner Maria Takolander (The End of the World, The Double) will give the closing address. The festival will also feature writers workshops, advice from publishers and editors, street-side readings, music, and Aboriginal visual art.

Find out more at the festival's website.



25 Giveaways

You Were Never Really Here

And thanks to Umbrella Entertainment, ten new or renewing subscribers can win a double pass to You Were Never Really Here, now in cinemas.


Nearer the Gods

Thanks to Queensland Theatre, two new or renewing subscribers can win double pass to Nearer the Gods at the Billie Brown Theatre, showing 6 October to 3 November.


To be in the running please email Grace Chang at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your full name and contact details. Preference is given to subscribers who have not received a giveaway in recent months. To be eligible for these giveaways, you must be a current or new paid subscriber to the print edition of ABR or to ABR Online.

From the New Issue

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