Arts & Culture

Krishna Istha: Beast at Fringe Perth

Krishna-Istha-Beast-Fringe-Perth

In these times of gender fluidity, pan-sexuality and the LGBT+ alphabet, you could be forgiven for feeling a bit confused about it all. What's the correct pronoun? Which toilets do trans people use? Do they still have their original naughty bits?

Never fear, Krishna Istha (25) – self confessed fence sitter and testosterone taking transgender bisexual – is here at The Blue Room for Fringe World 2020 to answer all your questions. Well, actually Krishna isn't here to do that, but they won't answer them in such a way that you'll learn a thing or two and have a laugh at the same time.

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Maureen: Harbinger of Death at Fringe Perth

Maureen-Harbinger-of-Death-Fringe-Perth

As I stepped into The Blue Room Theatre for their latest performance,  the nearby Perth Cultural Centre was abuzz with people partaking in Fringe Perth activities.

With the title “Maureen: Harbinger of Death”, I was curious about what might be in store, with the promo materials describing the play as one that explores the themes of friendships – in particular with older women, inter-generational relationships, ageing, and death - told through a queer lens.

The audience is transported to an apartment in Kings Cross – it is a simple set with solo performer Jonny Hawkins (a WAPAA graduate) at the fore. One minute he is briefly introducing us to the character of Maureen and the next he is Maureen sitting in the lounge room of her apartment. A quick change into a dress and earrings and we are off and running.

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Me and My Divas at Fringe Perth

Me-and-My-Divas-Fringe-Perth

There was a fresh summer breeze in operation at The Woodside Pleasure Garden as we waited in line and watched the ebb and flow of Perth Fringe Festival goers passing by.

The queue of people quickly built up as we patiently waited to enter the Spiegeltent to watch Me & My Divas.

They tell you to enter the Lotterywest De Parel Spiegeltent to leave your troubles behind and that is exactly what we did.

Clutching her Diva Bible, Velma Celli - "The UK's Queen of Live Vocal Drag", started off her evening performance with a bang, showcasing some well known diva tracks, accompanied by her music director Joe Louis Robinson.

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La Belle Époque at Perth Festival

La-Belle-Epoque-Perth-Festival

La Belle Époque is the sort of film that only the French could pull off – a heady mix of modern times and nostalgia – sexy, smart and utterly charming.

After viewing the trailer, I was mildy interested in coming to watch the movie. The premise wasn't fully clear, but seeing as I usually find anything with Daniel Auteuil quite enjoyable, I was willing to give it a go.

After settling in at the Somerville among the pines and with our premium on-site pizza from Charlies (two thumbs up for the field mushroom one), we put on the mozzie repellent (a must!) and waited for the trailers to end.

When La Belle Époque finally began, the opening scene gave me a brief moment of panic before everything came together and the magic began.

Attempting to summarise the plot of La Belle Époque risks ruining the experience for others, so I'll simply say that this a wonderfully entertaining and enjoyable film, showing that even when people change (or when they don't!), love still remains eternal. But love is not always simple or easy!

 

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Portrait of a Lady on Fire at Perth Festival

Portrait-of-a-Lady-on-Fire-Perth-Festival

Director and writer Céline Sciamma’s latest romantic movie Portrait of a Lady on Fire revolves around the story of artist Marianne (Noémie Merlant), who is commissioned by the mother of a bride to be to paint a secret portrait of her daughter Héloïse (Adèle Haenel), to give to her future husband.

As the painting progresses, Marianne and Héloïse become better acquainted and form a strong emotional and sensual bond.

Set in the 1770’s in France, Portrait of a Lady on Fire brings to the fore some interesting issues that women had to face during those times – lack of recognition for their chosen vocations (Marianne as an artist), restricted social freedom, repressive public morals and more.

 

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Bang Bang at The Blue Room Theatre

Bang-Bang-The-Blue-Room-Theatre

Standing on the balcony outside the Blue Room Theatre, my partner and I mused on what we were about to witness during the performance of Bang! Bang!, a theatrical dance double-header. Not being dance devotees, we were interested in how the cast and crew would bring the two pieces, Love You, Stranger and Act 2, Scenes 1-4 to life.

Prior to settling into our seats, we crossed a stage stripped bare of props and scenery apart from a half-dozen or so black wooden boxes. The focus was undoubtedly on the three cast members, dressed in garb reminiscent of Victorian era dresses. Love You Stranger presents the fates of three women of those times who were brought to trial for murder, and provides a commentary on our own modern issues of public shaming.

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Farming at Luna

Farming-Luna

Based on an autobiographical story by writer-director Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Farming centres around the story of Enitan, a young Nigerian boy growing up in the UK last century.

During the 1960’s to 1980’s a practice called “farming” took place, whereby Nigerian families fostered out their children to working class white families in Britain, so that they could focus on work, study and saving money.

As the movie unfolds, we are thrown into Enitan’s childhood and coming of age story which one can only best describe as turbulent.

He is alone and a misfit – caught between cultures, and subject to constant racism. When he gets drawn into the world of a racist and violent skinhead gang, it starts a sequence of events that lead to pointless repeated violence and tragic circumstances.

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