Next Wave Festival Melbourne

I just spent the weekend in Melbourne and managed to catch some excellent Next Wave shows while I was there. Next Wave Festival is a curated contemporary arts and performance festival that only comes around once every two years. I’ve been meaning to get my butt down there for a while so I was happy that I finally had a chance to brave the grey skies and hipsters on the streets of Melbourne. Managed to also find the time for some cocktail drinking, shopping, as well as being seen scribbling in an artistic looking notebook in fashionable cafes too.

So for your convenience, I have include my top five Next Wave picks! But you’d better make it quick smart!

The Exchange

I was so impressed and moved by The Exchange, a double bill of surreal movement and visual feasts. Italian company Dewey Dell team up with Sydney based Justin Shoulder and company to deliver what is probably the best show in the festival. They also present a second double bill opening tomorrow night. Highly recommended!

Sneak a peak:

Blindscape

Produced by the very lovely artistic director of Crack Theatre Festival, Gareth Hart, this immersive physical theatre piece is a technological wonder. As you enter the space headphones allow you to navigate through a 3D soundscape, while your eyes become accustomed to the gloom, illuminated only by the light of your iphone. Ghostly and surreal pole and acrobatics haunt the space as you wander cautiously through.

Shamanic Organic Contemporary Cuisine

If you can handle and enjoy 45 minutes of bizzare clowning then this is the show for you. The set glistens imaginatively while we are taken on a hippy-mocking journey of the absurd. I though the ‘pumpkin and reindeer communication stew’ was particularly amusing. It smells good too!

The Greater Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere

This faux embassy for united generic Asian culture was pretty amusing. This free installation in Acmi at Fed Square operates most days with a cultural program of activities arranged by the ambassadors. Unfortunately we missed the cosplay competition.

Bingo Unit

Dangerous and ambitious, one of the Team Mess actors was already punched and thrown to the ground several times by the time we arrived. I participated in some filming for their project, an archetypal cop show, in which strangers play the lead roles. You are given very little direction and only allowed one take, but somehow all humans already know exactly how to play a character in a TV cop drama. Can’t wait to see how it turns out, showings start tomorrow.

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