Friday, November 9, 2012

2013 Arts Festival helps Perth to lose its “dullsville” tag

With the weather slowly warming up I am beginning to look forward to all the cool things that summer brings and the Perth International Arts Festival has to be one of my all time favourite events.   

Last night I was lucky enough to score an invite to the Perth Festival launch of its 2013 programme.    

It might sound like no big deal to sit through a multimedia presentation of shows that haven’t yet opened but it was just a reminder of the impact that PIAF has on the cultural life of Western Australia’s capital city.

Perth is one of the most geographically isolated places on earth and in the past the city has been labelled Dullsville on account of its often small town mentality and sometimes ethno-centric attitude.

I've written before on how cool the Festival is but after seeing what the 2013 programme will be, I am sure that next year’s festival will be no different.

The format of the Festival is of no surprise, with a plethora of different art forms such as film, theatre, circus, dance and music - spanning from early music with Carlo Gesualdo, right through to a 110 piece symphony orchestra playing Bartok and a commissioned work by the divisive classical contemporary Phillip Glass and all the way to the world’s coolest blues, jazz and pop shows performing in the Festival Garden.     

There are also plenty of shows for children and families as well as many free events if you are, like me and many others, on a budget.

The 2013 highlights are Bertolt Brecht’s The Threepenny Opera, Sydney Theatre Company’s adaptation of Kate Grenville’s The Secret River and an Australian excusive/premier of the Mission Trip directed by Rachel Chavkin.

There are also shows that cross genres, break the conventions and bring you stories in ways that are unusual.

Mariano Pensotti’s La Marea designed to be performed in various apartments and viewed by passer bys in the street. This will be something not to be missed as drama spills out from the theatre halls and into the street.
Another break from convention is the National Theatre of Scotland’s The Strange Undoing of Prudence Hart. This show had a phenomenally successful run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and will take places, not at the State Theatre Centre, but among the tables of Little Creatures’ Loft.

The shows that I have my eye on are the A History of Everything all the way from Belgium and Samuel Beckett’s play Watt, performed by the Gate Theatre Dublin.

Circus Rolado’s La Cucina Dell’arte with its vaudeville inspired act that include pizza throwing and plate spinning hilarity will no doubt be a show not to be missed.      

As for the Chevron Festival Gardens, I’ll be there every night enjoying the uber cool atmosphere and the super cool tunes that will electrify Perth’s cultural centre. With its great music and awesome vibe it makes me happy to be alive.   

I love a good Writers’ Festival and this part of PIAF is something that I always look forward to.

Having just finished  All That I Am, I can't wait to  hear Anna Funder speak as well as Margaret Atwood of the Blind Assassin fame.

But we don’t have to wait until February 8 2013 to enjoy artistic creations from overseas.

The Lotterywest Festival Films begins in late November 2012 and continues right through to mid April 2013.

Outdoor movies are a great way to enjoy balmy Perth nights and after enjoying a picnic and a glass of wine, watching movies from all around the globe making it a perfect end to a great night out.

The locations are at the University of WA Somerville outdoor movies and at Joondalup Pines, which is also outdoors. 

Choosing which shows to go to is already proving difficult but I am sure the 2013 Perth International Arts Festival will enrich the lives of the citizens Perth and making our city an exciting place to live. 

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