Melbourne returns to the stage
With Victoria’s double-dose vaccination rate surpassing 80% of the population over 16, Melbourne’s performing arts organizations are back on the scene.
The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is leading the charge with a series of concerts at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl throughout December.
The centerpiece of the outdoor mini-season is the star-studded Performance of a Lifetime: LIVE event, presented two nights and hosted by Double J radio presenter Zan Rowe. It features the MSO led by Benjamin Northey, performing alongside the stars of the Performance of a Lifetime vaccination campaign video, including Rhonda Burchmore, Deborah Cheetham, Virginia Gay, Ali McGregor and Meow Meow, as well as some of the greats. names of the Melbourne theater, including Lucy Durack. , Josh Piterman (The Phantom of the Opera), Alinta Chidzey and Des Flanagan (Red Mill! Musical comedy), Jemma Rix and Courtney Monsma (Frozen the musical) and Gillian Cosgriff (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child).
The concerts will also feature contemporary music stars including Tim Rogers (You Am I), Kate Ceberano, Kylie Auldist and Lance Ferguson (The Bamboos), Emma Donovan, Paul Grabowsky, Lior and Felix Riebl (Cat Empire) in preview of all new solo material.
The season kicks off with Classical Hits at the Bowl, with a program selected from among the more than 80 concerts that the MSO had to cancel in 2021. Benjamin Northey will lead a real hit parade of great classics, including that of Holst The planets, Elgar Variations of the enigma, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 and that of Ravel Bolero. The concert will also feature 14-year-old violin prodigy Christian Li, who will perform the first movement of Tchaikovsky’s beloved Violin Concerto.
The MSO also announced its return to Hamer Hall for two performances of Handel. Messiah, conducted by Graham Abbott and starring Samantha Clarke (soprano), Sally-Anne Russell (viola), Samuel Sakker (tenor), Pelham Andrews (bass).
The Melbourne Recital Center is also open for business again, with concerts resuming on November 12, with the a cappella ensemble Coco’s Lunch kicking off performing songs from their new album. Upcoming Highlights Include Melbourne Chamber Orchestra In Handel’s Performance Dixit Dominus, and the world premiere of the Commission Merlyn Myer 2021 by composer and pianist Nat Bartsch, who will perform his work The glass house alongside Inventi Ensemble.
Great musicals are also coming back. Red Mill! Musical comedy will finally have its Australian premiere at the Regent Theater on November 12, with Frozen the musical resume that same evening at Her Majesty’s Theater. Meanwhile, the two-part piece Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Is prepares to return to the Princess Theater from November 18.
The Melbourne Theater Company has scheduled its premiere for November 13, featuring Shakespeare’s production by Simon Phillips As you like it, with music by Kate Miller-Heidke and Keir Nuttall. The Malthouse Theater is relaunching its outdoor stage season, which has been designed to allow COVID-safe performances, and will feature a mix of live music, lectures and cabaret. And perhaps the happiest reopening will be the beloved La Mama theater, which will reopen in December after being destroyed by an electrical fire in May 2018.
The Melbourne International Jazz Festival will take over the city from December 2-5, hosting 70 shows and events, including 16 premieres and album launches.