23 January 2012

LA SOIREE the perfect start to the Sydney Mardi Gras Festival!

The Studio at the Sydney Opera House has been themed to give the impression your’ve walked into a circus tent with a small circular red stage as its centerpiece, with the audience sitting in rows surrounding the stage. The atmosphere is perfect for the next two hours of cabaret, new burlesque, circus sideshow and contemporary vaudeville. La Soiree is the new and improved version of La Clique which has turned Sydney on its head before. In fact many of the stars you’ll see in this show were in La Clique including The English Gents, Captain Frodo, Ursula Martinez and Bath Boy. Notwithstanding this it’s mostly full–on, sexy, in your face exciting adult entertainment. 

Le Gateau Chocolat performs in La Soiree

It begins with a newcomer Le Gateau Chocolat who brings an interesting twist on an opera singing gender illusionist, he’s a bit tame on the Sydney scale of drag-fab but used to effect in setting the mood. Next up the incredible English Gents, Denis Lock and Hamish McCann, whose display of strength, trust, and precision take your breath away, whilst delivered with an engaging take on British formality.  

16 January 2012

Meow Meow is the reigning Sydney showgirl!

The queue to get into the Spiegeltent for this popular Sydney Festival adventure was well established 30 minutes before we were to see our seats for Little Match Girl: typical scene of Sydneyites drinking and being social on a warmish summer night, but all eager to pay homage to the current reigning Sydney showgirl.

Meow Meow - Little Match Girl

You know the setup inside the Famous Spiegeltent but this time it’s enhanced by the most fabulous, huge, sparkling chandelier I’ve seen. The only accessory this showgirl would need, along with the customary Sydney showgirl red sequin dress.   Were soon off and running with everything, showgirl, band and staging all turned to full-on.   
We learn that this show is inspired both by Hans Christian Andersen’s tale of a girl desperately selling matches to buy food and a documentary about Oasis the Salvation Army Sydney-based shelter for homeless people. The nexus between these two becomes at times emotional and dark – its clever sophisticated stuff to have with a few champagnes for sure.

9 January 2012

Renaissance – the perfect day out for culture lovers

This week a friend and I went on a fabulous day outing to Canberra and I thought you might find it of interest. We took the 7am CountryLink train to Canberra with first class tickets which turned out to be a great idea as we got lots of room and great service. After having breakfast and reading the paper we arrived in Canberra around 11ish. 
We were met by our tour guide for the day and transferred by maxi-cab, along with seven other tourists, to our first stop at the National Library at which we had timed entry tickets to Handwritten - ten centuries of manuscripts from the Berlin State Library. This extraordinary exhibition features 100 unique manuscript treasures spanning more than 1000 years of history, the exhibition includes exquisite illuminated manuscripts, rare letters, sketches and documents and priceless musical scores. Beethoven, Galileo, Michelangelo and Napoleon are just some of the many names represented in this exhibition. Whilst most are in German with no translations available it was the scores of famous operas which I found fascinating.
Next stop was the National Portrait Gallery which I hadn’t visited before. I could have done with more than the given hour and a half but got to wiz through the permanent collection – it will need a revisit to do it justice.  It’s a lovely building and has a terrific terraced cafe which was our lunch spot.
We arrived at the main game of the day the National Gallery of Australia just in time for our 2 pm timed enter to  Renaissance – 15th & 16th century Italian paintings. And what a show this is, these treasures are on loan from the Accademia Carrara in Bergamo, Italy. Borrowing from its marvellous collection is only possible because the Accademia is renovating its display spaces, and the museum is temporarily closed. The works range from poignant depictions of the Madonna and Child, Bible stories, the lives of the saints and moving renditions of the Crucifixion to insightful images of nobles and patricians.

1 January 2012

New Years Day 2012 and colleenwindsor.com greets the world

Happy New Year to you my friends and thanks for visiting this new little web page project of mine. As an old showgirl I’ve missed having a creative outlet and so this idea has taken shape.  Each week I hope to post either a review of something I’ve seen that might interest you or express an opinion on a current topic that were all talking about or just share a sighting that’s crossed my path – however I come at it I hope to entertain those that call by.
Cheers and all the best!
Colleen Windsor