It feels like a whole new world (give or take an Aladdin lyric or two) is at my feet. Not only is spring here, generally raising my spirits and setting the trees around Carlton and in my courtyard into blossom, but it’s arts festival season in my fair city. This week I’ve enjoyed Melbourne Fringe events, a ‘behind the scenes’ day at the Australian Ballet, and have started itemising shows that are ‘must-sees’ at the Melbourne Festival for 2014. There’s also some big changes going in my life more generally, which I will be excited to share with you all soon! So today’s blog is all about a new look (inspired by Monsieur Dior, of course) for a new season in the year, and a new season of my life.
Monday started off excellently, with a trip to the Australian Ballet’s People’s Day – effectively an open rehearsal event. Held at the State Theatre under the Arts Centre spire, the People’s Day was very much a little girls fest – featuring a world of sugarplum fairy tinies keenly watching the ballerinas onstage as they went through their barre class. It was a great opportunity to see the State Theatre stage without any scenery – you could really observe the depth of the stage and all the ship-like ropes and pulleys they facilitate the gorgeous set design we are used to enjoying. The ballerinas were graceful in their routine warm-up exercises, but sans costumes and tight leotards, one really sensed the sheer hard (and indeed, painful) mechanized work that is required in order to perform modern or classical ballet. More like an army of gazelles than a floating corps de ballet, this open rehearsal a good reminder for all (especially the junior dancers whose parents take them to dancing classes weekly) that professional dancing is more than tutus, buns and tiaras.
My own new look: outside the Arts Centre, wearing H&M skirt, Obus jacket and Hot Chocolatica shoes
Dior’s new look, which never fails to flatter – in its original incarnation or modern iterations
Come Thursday, I put my hair in my best Betty-bangs (see these bangs on Instagram by following @iolantherubyslipper) and looked forward to an evening at Melbourne Fringe Festival with barbershop quartet comediennes Bobby and the Pins. Held at the fabulously kitsch Lithuanian Club on Erroll Street in North Melbourne, Bobby and the Pins’ fringe show Glamping was rich with the jokes a 15-year-old version of you would roll around at a sleepover laughing at. This isn’t to say it is necessarily juvenile or stupid humor – the loose plot about four high-maintenance gals going glamping is simply a vehicle for the quartet to showcase their acapella chops. The audience were jollied along, the players were jollied along … in all it was pretty darn jolly. I understand that Bobby and the Pins can be found at various festivals around town plying their charming trade of songs and cheeky humor …. go awn, book a Bobby here!
Don’t forget that Melbourne Festival is also coming our way, from the 10th-26th of October. Click here to see the vast array of shows to select from, and ring in the new season with your own new look.