Home' InDaily : October 30th 2009 Contents We invite you to a free public talk with Carl Vine,
Artistic Director of Musica Viva Australia.
Thursday 12 November 2009 at 6.00pm
Venue: Napier Theatre GO4, Ground Floor,
Napier Building, University of Adelaide
Carl Vine first rose to prominence as a
composer of music for classical dance. He has
since emerged as a major orchestral composer
with seven symphonies and seven concertos
heading the catalogue. He has undertaken such
diverse tasks as arranging the Australian National
Anthem and writing music for the Closing
Ceremony of the Olympic Games (Atlanta, 1996).
Carl Vine has commented widely on the role of
the Arts in Australia.
Bookings by Tuesday 10 November to:
or Telephone 8303 4064
Admission is free and open to the public; gold
coin donation invited.
Sponsored by Unibooks.
What Use is Classical Music?
Friends of the University
of Adelaide Library
and Musica Viva
October 30 - November 5, 2009
The Independent Weekly
When Shakespeare penned
King Lear 400 years ago, he
was living in an entirely
different civilisation, yet so little
has changed. The play is still
relevant enough to be adapted and
re-adapted by theatre companies
the world over.
When John Gaden steps on
stage to play the lead role in the
State Theatre Company's latest
adaptation of the play, it will be 21
years since he last inhabited the
role. For him, much has changed.
"A lot happens in 21 years.
Particularly between the late 40s
and late 60s, which is where I am
now -- friends die, family die and
new people come into the world,"
The effect of this is to make the
role of King Lear a whole new
experience for Gaden, who is one
of Australia's most revered stage
actors, with a particular interest
"It's like doing a different play,"
he says, before admitting that
his memory of last time round in
Lear's shoes is not quite clear in
The State Theatre Company's
version of King Lear, which
opens tomorrow night, is not a
traditional take on the classic.
Brought into a modern day
setting, with a minimalist set
design which relies heavily
on lighting to create context,
the performance gives an
atmosphere of clutter-free
It's a suitable mirror for
the play's original context.
Shakespeare wrote Lear in
the amoral, pre-Christian era,
something Gaden says freed
the playwright from the ethical
structure of religious times.
"In a sense that liberates him
to set up a moral universe which
is much more to do with the way
people relate to each other. Gods
are mentioned as if they're part
of a human world, so you really
have to be careful how you judge;
how you judge yourself and how
you judge others in this universe."
King Lear finds himself in
trouble when he decides to divide
his realm on the basis of how
much his daughters appear to
Of the three, only Cordelia, the
youngest, refuses to take part in
the scheme. The others, Goneril
and Regan, seize the opportunity
for a power-play.
"You just find the worst of
human behaviour and slide into
it," says Victoria Longley, who
plays the manipulative Goneril.
"It's nice in a way because
she's wicked and naughty, and it's
alarmingly accessible to me."
Longley was asked to play the
part by State Theatre Company
artistic director Adam Cook just
days before she was invited to
play the same role for the Bell
"I said yes to that, too. It'd be
a very strange actor who didn't
jump at the chance to do more
Shakespeare," she says.
The cast of the State Theatre
Company production also
includes relative newcomer and
recent NIDA graduate Sarah
Snook in the role of Cordelia,
doubling as the fool.
Longley says Gaden is a special
highlight, something many
members of the King Lear audi-
ence will no doubt agree with.
"He's just divine. It's a pleasure
to be in the room and see his
performance blossom," she says.
■ The State Theatre Company's
King Lear plays from October 31
to November 21 at the Dunstan
POET'S CORNER Compiled by John Miles
AGISTS ELK LENGTHEN
E BLEEDER E
ARBOREAL NET ESCAPE
STRIDES LEPER CORGI
TOTEM OASIS WARTHOG
LEAGUE ORE ESTEEMED
S THERMOS X
MARJORAM GIN JALOPY
Solutions from 10
Dinner, Colac R.S.L.
four young men on the road
A dark road that burns
through country towns,
then slides away into the night.
Two aslumber in the backseat,
exhausted from a fourth day
of excursions on the road
and an hour yet from our rented cottage --
cold, unlit, grazed free of food.
We slow where evening traffic
congests into Colac. Stirring,
a drowsy voice suggests the R.S.L.
and by some travellers' fortune
it flickers into sight. Hot coffee,
steaming veg and schnitzel --
and, implicit, the tastes of home.
Above our booth, grey photographs --
young men lured to distant wars
by this same sense of adventure,
with this same fealty to friends.
And, rising to leave, we pledge
our pocket-change to the club --
instead, a poker-machine sings
and disgorges a pirate's hoard.
Thom Sullivan's first collection of poetry was
published earlier this year. He has contributed
previously to Poet's Corner.
Reader unpublished poems to 30 lines can be
emailed with postal address to poetscor ner@
independentweekly.com.au or posted with SAE to
the Poetry Editor, Independent Weekly, GPO Box
114, Adelaide 5001. A poetry book will be awarded
to each contributor.
A contemporary classic
King Lear's main players:
Martha Lott (back),
John Gaden, and
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