Friday, March 6, 2015

Wow, what a festival!

The Perth International Arts Festival (PIAF) has in recent years been seriously amazing and the 2015 season was no different.

This year PIAF opened with The Giants. It was organised by a French Street Theatre Company called Royal de Luxe and it apparently took a team of 70 people to move the two huge marionettes (a little girl and a diver who were 6 meters and 11 meters respectively) through the streets of Perth over 3 days telling a story about WWI while integrating elements of our Indigenous heritage.     

It was a mammoth operation that required government agencies to shut off parts of the CBD as well as ensure that there were enough buses and trains to allow people to get to the city. Transperth was quoted as saying that it was the biggest logistical operation that they’ve ever encountered. It was estimated that 1.4 million people or ¾ of the population of Perth came into the city to see The Giants.   

The whole thing was amazing! Just the size of these marionettes were breath taking and the effort involved in their movement was captivating. To be honest, the story was lost on me as we ended up seeing bits of them rather than walking along and following the narrative.

There was one cool moment when, by chance, the girl stopped directly in front of us and squatted to go to the toilet, at which point all the guys and girls working the ropes turned away out of respect.  

Apart from the amazing Giants I got to go to an incredible performance of the Canadian group Tafelmusick. They gave a semi staged performance of the music by JS Bach, Handel and Vivaldi while a multimedia presentation displayed images of the houses that they lived in and a narrator told us about the art works that hung on their walls, etc. The amazing thing was (apart from their superb playing) was they did the entire performance by heart. Now that’s impressive!!     

Another highlight was Perth Writers' Festival. PWF was a perfect weekend of sessions that looked at the art of belonging, optimism vs pessimism, women in power and the political environment, just to name a few; it was great to hear the likes of Geraldine Doogue and Bob Brown. Thankfully it wasn't too hot so and it turned out to be a perfect weekend.           

We got to go to other events too such as 1980s rock icon Neneh Cherry at the Chevron Festival Gardens and the Lotterywest Film Festival at the University of WA.   

Our 2015 Perth Festival journey finished with Opera in the Park and a WA Opera performance of Rossini’s The Barber of Seville. Emma Matthews was an incredible Rosina as too were James Clayton as Figaro and Douglas McNicol as Dr Bartolo. Local singers Fiona Campbell and Mark Alderson were also great.

Thank you so much PIAF for a great Festival. Until next time, I can’t wait!!  


  1. It peed? That's awesome! It looks like an amazing festival.

    Corinne x


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