September is a month of festivals, with some thrilling world premieres in the mix. Get your arty clothes on for spring in Perth!
In a major coup, one of the world’s most awarded and exciting choreographers Krzysztof Pastor has joined forces with West Australian Ballet to create a world premiere production of Dracula, opening on the 7th. The production features Wojciech Kilar’s music from the 1992 gothic film Dracula, performed by the WA Symphony Orchestra. After a 10-year absence, WA Ballet’s own artistic director Aurélien Scannella returns to the stage to dance the role of Old Dracula in special guest appearances. The season is selling fast so be quick!
Later in the month the WA Symphony Orchestra will perform another film soundtrack, this time John Williams’ Oscar-winning score for a live screening of Star Wars A New Hope on the 28/29th.
On the 9th September choral ensemble Voyces will present the world premiere of a piece by Perth composer Perry Joyce. Plus One will also include works by John Tavener, Paul Mealor and Matthew Orlovich both acapella and accompanied by instrumental soloists.
On the 7/8th the WA Youth Jazz Orchestra will present Count Basie’s seminal work The Atomic Mr Basie in a celebration of the album’s 60th anniversary as part of their Downstairs at the Maj series. Sister organisation the WA Youth Orchestra will present a program Pines of Rome on the 22nd featuring popular programmatic repertoire reflecting the many colours of Europe.
The Sydney based Ensemble offspring will complete a WA residency this month which will include a concert Spel on the 11th, a hard-hitting program of all-female works exploring nostalgia and adventure, love and life.
The annual Move Me festival also launches on the 11th, promising a smorgasbord of contemporary dance. The program includes CO3’s Dance Marker’s Project which celebrates a powerhouse of female contemporary dance makers with two new works, alongside Dust on the Shortbread which takes a poignant look at dementia and performed in an intimate house concert setting. A new trio by Kynan Hughes Love/Less explores the universal human experiences of intimacy and loss, sharing the program with NEXT, a new independent work, selected from the best of STRUT’s Shortcuts seasons.Queensland dance theatre group The Farm dance will also perform Cockfight. Described as a cross between The Office and a cage fight, Cockfight is a game of comical one-upmanship.
Lost & Found return on the 12th with their fresh take on rare operas, this time reviving Charpentier’s Acteon by performing it in a swimming pool with a new orchestration and translation. One of the highlights of the year for sure! Meanwhile students from the Australian National Academy of Music will perform an unusual take on a Mozart opera on the 16th as part of the Music on the Terrace series. Mozart at the Opera will involve a chamber music version of The Abduction from the Seraglio presented by narrator and wind players.
Craig Ogden will join forces with the University of WA Chamber Orchestra to perform the Australian premiere of Andy Scott’s Guitar Concerto on the 16th. The concert is part of a series of concerts and workshops that make up the inaugural UWA Perth International Classical Guitar Festival, running from 12-16th.
20th Meanwhile over at the WA Academy of Performing Arts the music department are proud to launch their new specially commissioned harpsichord by Bruce Kennedy, one the world’s greatest craftsmen. Stewart Smith presents Baroque Harpsichord, a program featuring the music of JS Bach and his contemporaries joined by violinist, Paul Wright and select string students
And there is more guitar in store with the popular Australian duo Grigoryan Brothers performing Songs Without Words on the 22nd, featuring works from their latest ARIA nominated release, Songs Without Words.
The Australian String Quartet will premiere a new work by James Ledger on the 26th, alongside Schubert’s dramatic Rosamunde quartet and Shostakovich’s tenth quartet.
After the sold out success in 2017 the Perth Symphony Orchestra will reprise Unplugged: Nirvana Reimagined on the 28th, featuring singer Justin Burford and a fully-fledged orchestra in bloom, transformed for one night only into a raging rock beast.
The Awesome Festival launches at the University of WA on the 28th/29th before heading to the Perth Cultural Centre for the following weeks. The festival offers everything from theatre to dance, early childhood activities, music, film and hands-on crafts events for children aged 0-12 and their families. The UWA Opening Weekend features Bambert’s Book of Lost Stories (Barking Gecko Theatre Company), Slapdash Galaxy by Bump Puppets, Game Theory where hospcotch meets contemporary dance and Filmbites where kids learn about and create film special effects. Madame Lark will be taking flight vocally around the campus with her musical-saw and check out world class pianist Simon Tedeschi sharing his life story and his unconventional practice tricks.
In the world of THEATRE Frieda Lee’s romance The Inconsequential Lives of Little Fish opens at The Blue Room on the 4th, billed as a a heartfelt two-hander with a dark twist. Company O are presenting a brief second season of their play Stuck before it tours to Sydney Fringe Festival. Stuck is the story of someone who wants to get on with their life but can’t, and two people who can get on with their lives but won’t. It is on at Curtin’s Hayman Theatre on the 14/15th. Amelia Ryan’s revealing foray into impending parenthood The Breast is Yet to Come runs Downstairs at the Maj from 27-29th. Spare Parts Puppet Theatre launch their school holiday season on the 22nd with The Night Zoo. This colourful large-scale puppetry show tells the story of girl who always wanted a pet of her own and then one night her dreams come true.