Festival hits Home run
PERTH International Arts Festival returned to its UWA heritage last week with the announcement of the 2017 PIAF program at Winthrop Hall.
Artistic director Wendy Martin launched her meticulously curated festival, which runs from February 10 to March 5, and features 24 days of beauty, whimsy, fun, entertainment and thoughtprovoking works.
“In a world fraught with troubles and in an era where we are all connected via technology, yet strangely not, PIAF gives us three weeks together in parks, rivers, footy ovals and streets, in theatres, hotels and at the beach to celebrate all we have in this beautiful remote city on the edge of Australia,” Martin said.
“And to travel together to extraordinary places with the world’s most brilliant artists as our guides.”
Martin said she could not be more proud of this year’s opening event, Home, and next year the same team would take audiences deeper into the environment with Boorna Waanginy: The Trees Speak, combining technology and the natural world.
“For the festival’s first three nights, Kings Park will be transformed into a magical canvas celebrating the flora and fauna of southwest Australia and the wisdom and knowledge of the Noongar people who have been its caretakers for thousands of years,” she said.
“This unique experience of wonder and interconnectedness will be the start of a festival journey that will see big-picture stories played out through personal perspectives and none more potent than this quintessential festival event.”
Other highlights include New York theatre marathon trilogy in three courses The Gabriels: Election Year in the Life of One Family, Nouveau Cirque du Vietnam’s A O Lang Pho, PIAF commissions Lady Eats Apple and Flit, Russian theatrical experience Opus No. 7, Brodsky Quartet, Canadian dance work Betroffenheit and WA Ballet’s Takuto: Ballet at the Quarry.
“What is closer to all of our hearts than Aussie Rules?” Martin said.
“Kicking off next year, Fremantle Dockers is one of only eight teams selected for AFL Women’s, the inaugural national female football league.
“Isn’t that something to celebrate and we have invited Perth duo Snapcat and Melbourne artist Lara Thoms to do just that.
“Before the Siren is a feelgood family event at Fremantle Oval, part half-time entertainment and part community rally; everyone is invited.”
Scent is a great driver of memory and Martin’s decision to add a signature scent to each festival continues with the choice of lemon myrtle which will waft throughout venues.
Northbridge’s Chicho Gelato has created a PIAF 2017 gelato, lemon myrtle and macadamia nut.
PIAF 2017 rounds out with annual favourites Perth Writers Festival, Lotterywest Festival Films, Chevron Festival Gardens, the 2017 Visual Arts program and Chamber Music Series.
See the full program at www.perthfestival.com.au.
Boorna Waanginy: The Trees Speak