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Culture March 28, 2020

MICF director Susan Provan on shutting down the show

Susan Provan has been director of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for 27 years, taking it from strength to strength. So, the decision to cancel this year’s event – for the first time in its history – was no laughing matter. “We were in a position where we had to move quickly. We were literally building venues. We needed to minimise the fallout.”

Culture March 21, 2020

Author and activist Naomi Klein

Author and activist Naomi Klein has long been a critic of consumer culture and its focus on individualism, arguing instead that we need to band together to deal with the world’s crises. “The tricky thing is that we are able to find our best selves in these moments of crisis, of high crisis, but within our economic system, the pressures of the market bear down pretty fast.”

Culture March 14, 2020

The Australian Ballet’s Alice Topp

As a homesick teenager from Bendigo, Alice Topp dreamed of dancing with The Australian Ballet. Now she is also a resident choreographer with the company, and only the second woman to hold the title. She speaks about the creative collaboration of her latest work, Logos. “We are in a vulnerable space together, and it’s a safe space and we’re free to have our own voice and it’s a really special journey for me. I can’t imagine creating any other way.”

Culture March 7, 2020

Astrophysicist Jo Dunkley

As one of the world’s leading astrophysicists, Professor Jo Dunkley has researched both the mass of the tiniest particle and the size of the universe. Here, she speaks about the thrill of discovery and the untold stories of women in science. “I started off being intent on just writing about the science, but then I realised the stories of the scientists would be just as interesting. Now I’m fascinated about all the people that must be out there who have never been credited.”

Culture February 29, 2020

Bhenji Ra goes vogue

Community has always been important to dancer and artist Bhenji Ra, who found solidarity in New York’s ballroom culture. In the wake of this summer’s devastating bushfires, she turned her focus back home, to the NSW south coast community that supported her to pursue her dreams. “It was the most incredible New Year’s Eve I’ve had. I’d never felt so intimate with my family. We were all there together – except for my older sister, who lives in Los Angeles – and with our community as well.”

review

Culture March 28, 2020

The Plot Against America

HBO’s The Plot Against America, based on the Philip Roth novel, brings together Winona Ryder and John Turturro in a reimagining of America’s World War II history. Now the slickly produced series is more pertinent to current times than the creators could ever have imagined.

Culture March 28, 2020

The best new Australian music

While Australian musicians are losing significant income with the cancellation of tours and festivals, they are still making remarkable records to inspire and revitalise us.

Culture March 21, 2020

The Extraordinary

A favourite at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, The Extraordinary, starring Vincent Cassel, offers insight into the lives of autistic youths and their carers.

portrait

Culture November 3, 2018

António Serzedelo, revolutionary

A visit to the Lisbon apartment of polymath activist António Serzedelo.

Culture October 13, 2018

Author Deb Kandelaars

The writer of Memoirs of a Suburban Girl on her long road out of a violent relationship. “There I am, right in the middle of my teenage years and suddenly in a serious relationship. A relationship that pushes away my other life. Being hit was beyond my world experience. I didn’t want it to happen again. I started treading a little bit more carefully, and that set up a power dynamic.”

Culture October 6, 2018

Theatre designer Tracy Grant Lord

A chat with theatre designer Tracy Grant Lord, side stage at a rehearsal for Twelfth Night.

books

Culture March 28, 2020

Blueberries

“Writing in the first person is writing that admits that experience is always truncated,” writes Ellena Savage. The Melbourne-bred, Athens-based writer is powerfully self-aware in her debut essay collection, which marries cultural criticism …

Culture March 28, 2020

Displaced

Philosopher Glenn Albrecht calls it farmosophy – thinking philosophically and creatively in relation to the practice of farming. It’s a new name for an old undertaking – Hesiod’s agricultural poem “Works and Days” …

Culture March 21, 2020

Author and activist Naomi Klein

Author and activist Naomi Klein has long been a critic of consumer culture and its focus on individualism, arguing instead that we need to band together to deal with the world’s crises. “The tricky thing is that we are able to find our best selves in these moments of crisis, of high crisis, but within our economic system, the pressures of the market bear down pretty fast.”