Ray of Comedy Sunshine
Ray Badran is not just a top bloke, he’s one of Australia’s most interesting rising comedians. A regular at the Sydney Comedy Store, Ray has also performed on The Footy Show and contributed to writing various TV shows such as Good News Week. He has blitzed it at the Sydney and Melbourne comedy festivals and has found himself just as much at home on stage in the US as he is in Australia. Ray Badran is joined by the big man of comedy Greg Sullivan. Since beginning his comedic career in 1995 Greg has performed at the famous Improv in Los Angeles, appeared on numerous TV shows and embodied a vast range of roles including fronting breakfast radio at Triple M in Brisbane for an incredible 14 years. Bringing the ladies’ touch is MC Mandy Nolan, right smack bang in the middle of her national book tour for Boyfriend’s We’ve All Had and Shouldn’t Have. Thursday at the Ballina RSL from 8pm. Free.
French Film Festival
Cinephiles and romantics rejoice! The Alliance Française French Film Festival is coming to Byron Bay, with a tantalising lineup of 14 films that make a French ‘affaire’ essential! This year marks the 25th anniversary of the festival in Australia and the directors have organised a spectacular program to celebrate its 25th birthday, transporting audiences to a nation awash with colour and romance. Local songstress and keyboard player Vasudha Harte will be adding some Gallic glamour to the opening night at Palace Byron Bay Cinema on Thursday. Vasudha will be entertaining patrons at the after party for opening night film The Finishers. Filmed in the mountains of Nice during the 2012 Ironman competition, The Finishers is an emotionally charged, superbly crafted drama starring Jacques Gamblin and Alexandra Lamy playing characters inspired by a true story. It follows the incredible journey of an embittered, former Ironman champion and his disabled son, who join forces to compete in a triathlon. The Alliance Française French Film Festival is recognised as one of the biggest events in the world for the promotion of French cinema, and this is its first year in Byron Bay. The festival continues until April 28. On closing night the festival will honour one of France’s most beloved directors, the comic genius Jacques Tati, screening his classic and much-loved film Mon Oncle.
Films about Donkeys
Donkeys and Disillusionment visualises the life stories of five pilgrims and a donkey over a six-year period.
The film follows the pilgrims as they undertake the physically and mentally gruelling journey through the Pyrenees mountains and on to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, northwest Spain.
Years later, the same characters are interviewed in their hometowns and we discover whether or not the pilgrimage was a catalyst for change in their lives.
The film is projected onto a screen behind musicians playing a live soundtrack, taking audiences on their own journey through story and sound to a point of revelation and discovery. Saturday at the Star Court Theatre in Lismore.
Shakespeare’s Sexual Revolution
This year celebrates the 450th birthday of William Shakespeare and in his honour the Drill Hall Theatre Company is staging his most famous romantic play with a lavish design aesthetic. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a lusciously psychedelic extrapolation of the joyous nature of love, the most beautiful human emotion, which the Drill Hall Theatre Company has wholly embraced by setting their production in Mullumbimby in the late 1960s.
The Dream opens on Friday and runs for three weeks until May 11. Tix at The Bookshop, Mullumbimby, or by visiting
www.drillhalltheatre.org.au and following the links.