With COVID causing cancellations of performances all over the country, and scheduled magazine features falling like flies, Limelight decided not to publish a September 2021 print edition – though our website was busier than ever. Instead we are publishing a bumper October 2021 issue, as well as extending everyone’s subscription by a month.

Limelight October 2021

In our expanded October magazine, you will find six major features and a whole lot more besides.

For our cover story (Red) Centrepieces, Janelle White, a social anthropologist based in Alice Springs, describes how the Alice Springs World Chamber Orchestra, founded by Markus Kucbenbuch in 2018, is creating a powerful space for community engagement and cross-cultural understanding, inspiring positive change. The photographs from their outdoor performances are spectacular too.

The global pandemic has accelerated the arts industry’s engagement with the digital world, allowing artists and companies to maintain a connection with audiences. But how do you make the investment in online work financially viable? Steve Dow investigates in his feature Arts and the Digital Frontier.

In Music for Humanity, Deputy Editor Hugh Robertson interviews superstar contemporary composer Max Richter about his new album Exiles. Richter explains how he uses music to make sense of a chaotic world, and why he believes the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights remains more relevant than ever.

Classical music and circus may be poles apart on the entertainment spectrum, but Brisbane’s globetrotting circus troupe Circa has been collaborating for years with companies including Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Opera Queensland and Lyon Opera. As Circa prepares to work for the fourth time with ABO on an Italian Baroque concert, Elissa Blake interviews Artistic Director Yaron Lifschitz about how music is central to everything Circa does in her feature Music Meets the High Wire.

Henry Purcell came of age at a time of religious and social turmoil, when writing for the monarch got a composer noticed but could be perilous. In the feature Purcell’s Songs of Praise and Propaganda, Limelight Editor at Large Clive Paget talks with Harry Christophers, Founder and Conductor of world-renowned UK choir The Sixteen, about how ‘The English Orpheus’ helped prop up the shaky Stuart dynasty, and how he emerged a better, brighter composer because of it. The Sixteen’s four-album series Royal Welcome Songs for King Charles II are available now on Caro.

In our final feature, Wotan’s Australian Daughter, Deborah Jones explores the extraordinary life of Marjorie Lawrence as a new documentary film about her life is released. Born in country Victoria in 1907, Lawrence was one of the greatest dramatic sopranos of her generation. Among her many triumphs, she stunned the audience at The Met when, in the role of Brünnhilde, she rode a horse on stage into the flames at the end of Götterdämmerung. A bout of polio left her in a wheelchair but that didn’t stop her singing. She truly had an amazing life and career. So why is she barely remembered today?

In At Home with the Arts, Hugh Robertson looks at Marquee TV, a leading digital platform for the performing arts, which has just launched in Australia, adding productions from Opera Australia and The Australian Ballet to its extensive, world-class catalogue. Head of Content Kathleya Afandor discusses Marquee’s track record and future plans.

Also in this issue, we interview 13-year violinist Christian Li about his new album for Decca Classics featuring Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, among other repertoire. Diana Simmonds takes her hat off to The Wharf Revue, which is leaving Sydney Theatre Company and going independent as it celebrates 20 years of political satire, providing an annual laugh-in that sells out year in, year out. We also interview Gina Williams about Koolbardi wer Wardong, the new opera sung entirely in Noongar, which she has written with Guy Ghouse, and which premieres at West Australian Opera in October.

And, as ever, there’s plenty more including book, theatre and opera reviews, as well as reviews of the latest recordings. In his latest Soapbox Guy Noble prepares a list of things to be grateful for to lift his spirits during the COVID lockdown, among them Bach, toasted sandwiches and the hold music on the ATO hold line. Tommie Andersson tells us about his relationship with the theorbo in Playing Up, avant-garde pianist Belle Chen, who performs at the OzAsia Festival on 21 October, answers 5 Questions, actor Tina Bursill says that being cast in Rodgers & Hammerstein’s music Cinderella is like a return to a love affair in My Music, while in this month’s Sacred Cow Deborah Jones says you should never review the audience, and yet….

The bumper October 2021 issue of Limelight is now available online.


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