10 episodes

The Witness Interview series - in depth Interviews with prominent practitioners in the Australian performing arts, by the Witness team - Robert Reid, Carissa Lee and Alison Croggon (Subscription-only)

The Witness Interview Witness Performance

    • Performing Arts

The Witness Interview series - in depth Interviews with prominent practitioners in the Australian performing arts, by the Witness team - Robert Reid, Carissa Lee and Alison Croggon (Subscription-only)

    The Witness Interview: Candy Bowers

    The Witness Interview: Candy Bowers

    ‘You are asking someone from the field into the house, and we are going to fight. Because I will always fight to decentralise the white patriarchy’

    Candy Bowers is an auteur – in her work, she is a playwright, producer, director, performer and an activist. In this wide-rangng conversation she talks to Alison Croggon about her hiphop show for young people, One the Bear. Co-written with her sister, composer Kim Busty Beatz Bowers, it’s latest in a long history of activist collaboration. Candy discusses her history as an independent activist theatre maker, and how she brings her vision of decolonisation to her audiences. “A lot of time in the theatre space it’s felt like war,” she says.  But, she tell us, things are changing.

    One the Bear opens next week at Arts Centre Melbourne as part of the Big World Up Close series. Bookings

    Further reading: Candy Bowers’ production of Susan Lori-Parks F*****g A

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

    • 44 min
    The Witness Interview: Nicola Gunn

    The Witness Interview: Nicola Gunn

    ‘I don’t have a process… What I do is put things that interest me on stage.’

    In this month’s podcast, Robert Reid talks to the unclassifiable Nicola Gunn, one of Australia’s most important and intriguing theatre makers, about her practice. They discuss her practice, from her early “Edward Gorey phase” to her most recent work, including Working with Children, which she considers her “disaster” to what she’s making now, a “live pedadogical exercise”.

    Gunn works as a performer, writer, director, producer and dramaturg. She makes live performances, videos, objects, site-specific installations and books that borrow from theatrical, choreographic, literary, comedic and visual art languages to create a mode of contemporary performance that plays with form and pursues a narrative, working across theatre and dance. Her solo work has been shown in Australia, New Zealand, Chile, the US, Canada, France, Austria, Portugal, the Czech Republic, Italy, Finland and Belgium.

    Producer: Ben Keene

    Further reading:

    Review of Working with Children

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

    • 40 min
    The Witness Interview: Thomas M Wright

    The Witness Interview: Thomas M Wright

    ‘There’s something fundamentally wrong with young men…that they gravitate to war, that they gravitate to violence, that they gravitate to self destruction…I’ve always felt compelled to wrestle with that.’

    In this wide-ranging conversation, writer, director and performer Thomas M Wright talks to Alison Croggon about his new film Acute Misfortune, his background as a theatre artist as one of the founding members of Black Lung during the Australian theatre renaissance of the early Noughties, the construction of masculinity and what’s wrong with maleness today, and the formal conventions of film.

    Thomas M Wright came to international notice when he was cast in Jane Campion’s series The Top of the Lake and has starred in many series and film since. His most recent film Acute Misfortune, which he directed and co-wrote, is a biopic about the controversial visual artist Adam Cullen, explores the destructive masculinity that runs through Australian culture. Based on the biography by journalist Erik Jensen, it won the Age Critics Prize at the Melbourne International Film Festival and is now showing in cinemas Australia-wide.

    Further reading

    Lauren Carroll-Harris in Kill Your Darlings on Acute Misfortune

    Alison Croggon on Oscar Redding’s Hamlet

    Alison Croggon on Black Lung’s Avast

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

    • 37 min
    The Witness Interview: Richard Watts

    The Witness Interview: Richard Watts

    ‘We still tend to overlook and ignore the remarkable work of Australians’

    Robert Reid talks to broadcaster, writer and general arts stalwart Richard Watts, discussing his background as a poet, activist and advocate, and his passionate and abiding connection to Australian arts. The conversation looks at the need for cultural change, the need to combat cultural imperialism and white supremacy, and the persistence of the cultural cringe.

    Richard is a Melbourne-based arts writer and broadcaster. The founder of the Emerging Writers’ Festival and a Life Member of the Melbourne Queer Film Festival, he has worked for a wide array of arts organisations and sat on numerous boards. He currently is chair of the Board of La Mama Theatre and is a member of the Green Room Awards Independent Theatre panel. In addition to writing for ArtsHub as Performing Arts Editor, Richard presents the weekly program SmartArts on 3RRR.

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

    • 43 min
    The Witness Interview: Moira Finucane Part 1

    The Witness Interview: Moira Finucane Part 1

    ‘When I think about art, I think: what raises the hair on your arms’

    In the first part of this funny, fabulous and very candid two-part episode of The Witness Interview, Ben Keene talks to the seductive and subversive Moira Finucane. With Jackie Smith, Moira is half of the powerhouse that is Finucane and Smith. Their variety-style performance art has become a staple of our performance landscape, and generated a loyal worldwide following. Here she talks candidly about the passions and struggles informing her work and how she began to create her unique form of queer performance.

    Finucane and Smith have won 15 theatre awards, including The Patrick White Playwright Award, Cuba’s National Theatre Award, the CHAMACO for the most outstanding International Presentation of 2015, 7 Green Room Awards, the Outstanding Contribution to Cabaret Award, Scotland on Sunday’s “Hottest Temptation of the Festival”, the Australia Council for the Arts Theatre Fellowship.  Finucane was also a Creative Fellow of the National Gallery of Victoria, the first ever appointed.

    The Witness Interview Moira Finucane: Part 2

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

    • 27 min
    The Witness Interview: Moira Finucane Part 2

    The Witness Interview: Moira Finucane Part 2

    Moira Finucane, ‘the patron saint of magpies’, digs into her creative practice in Part 2 of her interview with Ben Keene

    In Part 2 of this funny, fabulous and very candid two-part episode of The Witness Interview, Ben Keene talks to the seductive and subversive Moira Finucane. With Jackie Smith, Moira is half of the powerhouse that is Finucane and Smith. Their variety-style performance art has become a staple of our performance landscape, and generated a loyal worldwide following. Here she talks candidly about the passions and struggles informing her work, her processes, and her work around the world, including her work in China.

    Finucane and Smith have won 15 theatre awards, including The Patrick White Playwright Award, Cuba’s National Theatre Award, the CHAMACO for the most outstanding International Presentation of 2015, 7 Green Room Awards, the Outstanding Contribution to Cabaret Award, Scotland on Sunday’s “Hottest Temptation of the Festival”, the Australia Council for the Arts Theatre Fellowship.  Finucane was also a Creative Fellow of the National Gallery of Victoria, the first ever appointed.

    The Witness Interview Moira Finucane: Part 1

    You can subscribe to Witness podcasts through iTunes or an RSS feed. Click here for instructions on how to subscribe.

     

    • 34 min

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