Visual art: There are more than 400 photographs in A Century in Focus: South Australian Photography. Art critic Wendy Walker identifies some highlights: Townsend Duryea’s impressive panoramas, Samuel Sweet’s unconventional portraits, George Freeman’s 1880 photograph of squarerigged sailing ships and Charles Mountford’s remarkable 1940 images, Jalerina Holding a Perentie and Girl Twisting her Hair . Art Gallery of South Australia until January 28.
Theatre: Queensland Theatre Company has assembled the best cast in Brisbane this year for Heroes , writes Linda Hassall. Barry Otto, Robert Coleby and Max Gillies are three World War I soldiers who plan a heroic escape from a veterans’ home in this sensitively staged comedy by Gerald Sibleyras, translated by Tom Stoppard. Cremorne Theatre, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, until December 15. Bookings: 136 246.
Theatre: Unmarried women of a certain age brought out a cruel streak of caricature in Charles Dickens, writes theatre critic Alison Croggon. In her onewoman show Dickens’ Women, Miriam Margolyes delivers a theatrical essay on some of the author’s characters and the women who inspired them. It’s a fond reading and never less than virtuosic. Canberra Theatre Centre, ends tomorrow. Bookings: ( 02) 6275 2700.
Opera: Director Stuart Maunder uncovers the heart of darkness in Offenbach’s Tales of Hoffmann , writes Murray Black. While tenor Rosario La Spina makes a valiant effort as Hoffmann, soprano Emma Matthews — singing all the heroine roles, as Joan Sutherland did — is outstanding. As the bad guys, John Wegner sings with smoky- toned malevolence. State Theatre. In repertory until December 13. Bookings: 1300 136 166.
Exhibition: Japanese couturier Yohji Yamamoto gave women’s bodies sculptural form through his innovative silhouettes and fabrics. The Art Gallery of Western Australia is hosting the first Australian retrospective of Yamamoto’s women’s wear, with 40 garments from his 25- year career. Until February 17.
Theatre: Richard Roxburgh is stunning — feverish, disturbed and then suddenly radiant — as a playwright troubled by the connection between life and art, writes theatre critic John McCallum. If Michael Gow’s Toy Symphony is a self- portrait, then it is searingly honest. Neil Armfield directs this great production for Company B at Belvoir St Theatre. Until December 22. Bookings: ( 02) 9699 3444.
Sculptural: Clothes by Yohji Yamamoto