The Boy With the Green Thumbs
TreeTop Theatre, a children’s theatre company with a social vision and international roots, is sprouting its first seed with the production of Tistou, the boy with the green thumbs.
Based on a French classic, Tistou is an eight-year-old boy who reminds us that life can flower into so much more than the fixed ideas many adults bring to it. With the help of the gardener, Tistou discovers a hidden talent. Can he use this talent to change the ugliness and misery he encounters: prisons, slums, hospitals… even war?
Shows will be held at Ocean Shores Community Centre, Saturday 1.30 and 4pm; and Sunday at 11am. Tickets $5 per child three years and older, $10 per adult and $20 per family (up to four people).
Bring your own cushions.
To Be or Not to Be
Off the back of directing the critically acclaimed, award-winning Henry V for Bell Shakespeare in 2014, Damien Ryan will deliver a new production of Hamlet, one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies. Hamlet is a detailed family portrait in the political landscape of a ‘rotten’ Denmark, a country furiously preparing for war, not realising that the enemy lies within.
Hamlet is a young man cast in an unfamiliar role in a story he never expected to tell. Deeply saddened by the sudden death of his father, he is further shocked to find his mother quickly remarried to his uncle, the dead king’s brother.
Haunted by his mother’s perceived crime, Hamlet is a mass of contradictions and a modern anti-hero. He is at once vulgar, misogynistic and cruel while being overwhelmed by insecurities and indecision. He stands before us and speaks the truth, confronting us with just how fragile our ideals of family, love, community, loyalty, faithfulness and the courage to act can be. The production offers a giant window to the inner machinations of Elsinore, a place where nothing and no-one is ever safe from the prying, eavesdropping, awareness of others; an environment under insidious surveillance and secret tyranny.
Bell Shakespeare company present Hamlet at Lismore City Hall on Saturday 29 August at 7.30pm and Monday 31 August at 11am and 7.30pm. Bookings: 1300 066 772 or www.norpa.org.au.
Death Cafe about Dying
How do you begin to talk about death and dying in the Byron Shire?
With good company, delicious food, a relaxed cafe atmosphere and some improvised playback theatre of course! ‘Dying To Talk’ is a great opportunity to experience this. Cape Byron Playback Theatre Company have teamed up with the Natural Death Care Centre to bring you another Death Cafe experience with a difference. Death cafes have been happening in the Shire for a several years; they are part of a global movement to bring people together for more open, informative and often lively conversations about death. The aim is to increase awareness and familiarity around dying and loss, and to encourage people to make the most of their lives.
Dying To Talk is on Saturday 29 August at the Mullum Drill Hall.Doors open and food available 6–9pm. Mullum Community Gardens will have delicious food for sale. Tickets are $10 from Mullum Bookshop, Byron Bay’s Mary Ryan’s or online at www.trybooking.com/148260.
It’s an intimate venue and space is limited to 80 people, so get in early.
Tickets for The Drill Hall Ballad of Edgar and Mary
The Ballad of Edgar and Mary was commissioned by the Drill Hall Theatre Company with assistance from the Anzac Centenary Program. The work is co-written by Claude Gonzalez and Gregory Aitken and it tells the story of a Mullumbimby soldier serving in France in WWI, and his wife, who has aspirations of becoming a music-hall singer. Only ninety tickets are available for the opening on 9 October of The Ballad of Edgar and Mary. Tickets can be purchased online at www.drillhalltheatre.org.au and this week at The Bookshop Mullumbimby if the opening and closing events have not sold out. The closing event is 1pm for 2pm on Sunday 25 October. Described as a boutique musical, the entertainment is the beginning of the centenary season of the Drill Hall. Tickets for the gala opening and closing events are $30.
Moonlight and Magnolias
Legendary Hollywood producer David O Selznick (Peter Harding) has suspended his scriptwriter for the film Gone with the Wind. His choice for a replacement, writer and playwright Ben Hecht (Trevor Stone), is available for one week only.
Hecht arrives and drops a bombshell. He has only read the first page of the book! This is a disaster.
Selznick has also fired his Gone with the Wind producer and he pulls producer Victor Fleming (Mike Sheehan) from finishing filming of The Wizard of Oz. Selznick locks the three of them in his office for five days and feeds them nothing but bananas and peanuts, his idea of brain food. They are attended by his assistant, Miss Poppenghul (Jenny Briguglio). The end result must be a film script. Moonlight and Magnolias is based on the true story behind the making of the movie. Moonlight and Magnolias will be staged at the Players Theatre over 4–19 September. Evening performances will commence at 8pm and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Opening-night patrons will receive a complimentary glass of champagne.
Book online at www.ballinaplayers.com.au or at Just Funkin Music, 6686 2440.
The Worm that Turned
Everyone needs to eat and, as Wendell Berry says, ‘Eating is an agricultural act’. So we’re all involved with agriculture, and therefore we all together have the power to change the system by choosing where we buy our food. The documentary The Worm is Turning shows with historical footage where the current corporate model of chemical, monoculture-style farming comes from, and how it was spread around the world, using India as the prime example. From dead soil to the ‘cancer train’ in Punjab, we get to see the effects of this type of agriculture. The film also has amazing examples of farmers – from India, to USA to Australia – showing that ecological farming is better for human health and the environment, a method that is sustainable and restorative. Study after study has shown that small, ecological farms are in fact more productive and efficient with resources, and are the best model for the future. The film connects the dots on global food issues and features Vandana Shiva, Joel Salatin, Helena Norberg-Hodge, Raj Patel, Winona LaDuke, Bob Cannard, Will Allen, Bhaskar Save, Meriel Watts, Devinder Sharma, PV Satheesh, Olivier De Schutter and many more. Screening at the Byron Community Centre on Wednesday at 6pm.
The film screening will be followed by Q&A with a panel including the filmmakers.
Tickets are $20 and available at Santos stores or at the door.
The event is sponsored by Santos Organics.
Merchant of Venice at the Palace
The Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of The Merchant of Venice screens at Palace Cinema this week, the first production in the 2015 Live from Stratford-upon-Avon program screening RSC works live from Shakespeare’s hometown.
In the melting pot of Venice, trade is god. With its ships plying the globe, the city opens its arms to all, as long as they come prepared to do business and there is profit to be made. Shakespeare has been performed and celebrated in his Stratford hometown for centuries and the RSC has trained generations of the very best theatre makers since the company was founded in 1961, pioneering contemporary approaches to Shakespeare’s plays as well as staging the work of those who inspired him and the work of today’s playwrights. Screening at the Palace at 1pm on Saturday.
Holding the Man
Australian actor Ryan Corr will be in Byron Bay this week for the northern rivers premiere of Holding The Man, a new film in which he has the starring role. The screening is to be held at Palace Byron Bay Cinema on Sunday and is a fundraiser for ACON, NSW’s leading HIV prevention and support group. The film is a wonderfully moving love story set in the early years of Australia’s HIV crisis, and is based on the memoir of Timothy Conigrave, who worked as a health promotion officer at ACON in the early 1990s developing HIV-prevention campaigns. The event is sponsored by an investor in the film, Byron Shire local Peter Waters of Byron Plantation and The Arthouse. Holding The Man had its world premiere at the recent Sydney Film Festival, where it received critical and popular acclaim. Tickets for the Sunday premiere, which also features a Q&A with Ryan Corr, are $25 or $15 concession, and include a pre-film drink. They can be purchased through acon.org.au/HTMByron.