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Byron Shire
March 5, 2021

Interview with Tory Bauer curator of NORPA’s Festival of Love

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Tory Bauer

The Tory Story

I want to Know What Love Is, NORPA | Lismore City Hall | 7.30pm | 29 & 30 March | $25-54

Tory Bauer has curated NORPA’s Festival of Love, a series of fun love-themed experiences including three Love Hotels created around the theatre show. I Want to Know What Love Is at NORPA at the end of the March.

What is the Festival of Love and I Want to Know What Love Is? How can people get engaged?

It’s a love letter to Lismore. It’s a cross cultural blow out of all the different types of love – hopelessly in love, falling in love, self love, unlucky in love, looking for love, hired love, loveless, 24 hour love… It’s about having a date night (even with a friend) and choosing your own love adventure.

Tell me about your concept for The Love Hotels? How have you decorated the hotels with a love theme? What kitsch ideas did you go for?

My concept for the Lismore Love Hotels series is influenced by both Japanese Love Hotels and The Madonna Inn in California. Both are incredibly enchanting and quirky. The Lismore Love Hotels will be an escape from the treadmill of life (what’s for dinner, we need more toilet paper, never ending to-do lists) into a world of fake plastic roses, love protest signs, swan ceramics, midnight snacks, and embroidered dressing gowns. Think John and Yoko meets Bridget Jones’s Diary.

What mediums are you using in the theatre?

The theatre will be a serenade into an evening of late-night love song dedications, red roses, aphrodisiac delights, mesmerising cocktails, a pink fountain and a stand up bed…

Where do you source all your knits and crotchets?

I’m always rummaging through op shops and I also have a secret rug dealer in Byron.

What is it about love do you think that has us so addicted?

I think love lyrics have a lot to do with this. In the words of Robert Palmer:

Your lights are on, but you’re not home

Your will is not your own

Your heart sweats and teeth grind

Another kiss and you’ll be mine

Might as well face it, you’re addicted to love

Does love bring out the dag in all of us?

Yes! We’re all living out scenes from rom-coms in life.

Whats the most embarrassing thing you’ve done for love?

I asked my husband to marry me publicly using a RMS traffic sign – a ‘roadworks up ahead’ style sign.

Will the audience find love? If not love, what will they find?

Yes! They will find love in the charm of Lismore (my husband describes it as the Berlin of the Northern Rivers), they will find love in the play, the food, the late-night love song dedications, the electric atmosphere.

NORPA and The Good Room present I Want to Know What Love Is on 29 & 30 March at 7.30pm at Lismore City Hall from 6pm. Tix are $25–54 at norpa.org.au

Purchase your tickets before Tuesday 19 March and automatically go in the draw to win a night in one of three Lismore LOVE HOTELS curated by Tory Bauer.


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