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By Amanda Whitley — April 30, 2012

From arguably the world’s biggest DJ to a whole heap of blokes in pink tights, this is a huge week on the Canberra music and theatre calendar.

If that’s not your scene, there are always pumpkins…read on to find out more about what’s on This Week in The Can…


Les Ballets Elolle Men In Pink Tights

Les Ballets Elolle Men In Pink Tights parodies classic and present-day ballet in the most spectacular, talented and hilarious all-male comedy ballet ever.

See the best international professional male ballet dancers from thirteen nations. Witness the combination of magnificent dance proficiency, bantering and clamorous wittiness with designed mannerisms, dance misadventures and naturally outrageous hissy fits.

More information and tickets here.

Star Wars Burlesque: The Empire Strips Back

Star Wars Burlesque lands in Canberra on none other than International Star Wars Day, 4 May. This show guarantees to get some hearts racing with ‘the force’.

George Lucas could never dream that his characters could be used in such a manner, guaranteeing to get some hearts racing with “the force”.

Performing at Canberra Theatre this Friday 4 and Saturday 5 May. More info and tickets here.

Speaking In Tongues

A highly emotional drama, Speaking in Tongues is also a mystery-and the increasingly tangled web of deceit and lies twists in unexpected ways.

“Speaking in Tongues is about the right and the wrong of emotional conduct. It is a story about contracts being broken between intimates while deep bonds are forged between strangers.” Andrew Bovell. Adapted for the screen as the 2001 film Lantana.

Performing between Friday 4 and Saturday 19 May. More information and tickets here.

Shane Dundas – Believe

Shane Dundas has done a lot of comedy as half of the Umbilical Brothers (he’s the balder half), but he’s never done his own solo show. Before, he fell down a lot for your amusement; now he will stand-up.

He’s travelled the world doing comedy, and now he’s going where he’s never been. It’s a scary proposition, after all this time. Can he do it without the security of a double act? What form will it take?

Performing Friday 4 to Sunday 13 May at the Courtyard Theatre. More information and tickets here.

Henry Rollins – The Long March

International music heavyweight, social commentator, spoken word artist and solitary traveller, Henry Rollins lets loose in Canberra for one night only as part of his The Long March Tour.

Be prepared for a barrage of new stories, and no holds barred opinions from the man that has done and seen it all.

Performing at The Street Theatre at 6pm this Sunday 6 May.

Titanic: The Musical

Titanic is based on the true story of the great ship’s maiden voyage from departure in Southampton, England to the sinking in the Atlantic by an iceberg.

The show touches on issues such as class, immigration and mankind’s vulnerability in the face of nature. The story follows passengers and crew members who actually existed and were aboard the Titanic back in 1912.

Performing until Saturday 5 May at the ANU Arts Centre. More information and tickets here. You can read Heather Wallace’s review here.

Theatresports™ – North vs South

Theatresports™ – North vs South returns to the Street Theatre to decide which side of the lake will have the bragging rights for the next 12 months. Will the Northside defend their title or will the South finally rise up?

At the family-friendly time of 7:30pm, Canberrans will be able to revel in a night of entertainment fit for the Colosseum as teams of Theatrical Gladiators from each side of the lake compete with the same vigour as a State of Origin clash. Teams of improvisers will compete in a series of challenges resulting in comedy, theatre and music created at will to the roar of the crowd.

Theatresports™ is a fast and fun-filled theatre ride which combines wit, comedy, drama and fearless public performance. Given that Canberra houses some of the country’s quickest thinkers who are capable of providing extremely creative answers to the curliest of queries it is appropriate that Theatresports™ is used to settle Canberra’s most important question – ‘Which side of the lake is best?’

Get along to The Street this Saturday 5 May and cheer your side of the lake!


Collector Village Pumpkin Festival

Visit the historic village of Collector for their annual Pumpkin Festival this Sunday 6 May. The village is better known for fine wool, fat lambs, prime beef and bushrangers but once a year the residents go crazy for pumpkins.

Visit this charming little family festival for some good old fashioned fun. Delight in the pumpkin growing competitions, pumpkin soup, pumpkin scones, regional produce, stalls, activities, performances and displays.

Find out more at their website.


David Guetta

With in excess of 25 million fans on Facebook and over half a billion views on YouTube, multiple Grammy Award Winner David Guetta is one of the most watched people on the planet.

His latest album ‘Nothing But The Beat’ includes hits such as ‘Turn Me On’ (featuring Nicky Minaj) ‘Little Bad Girl’ (featuring Taio Cruz and Ludacris),’Titanium’ (featuring Sia), Sweat (featuring Snoop Dogg) and ‘Without You’ (featuring Usher).

David Guetta will set Stage 88 in Commonwealth Park alight from 7pm this Friday 4 May with his full live show, including pyrotechnics and blistering visuals.

Find out more and buy tickets here.


Everything Fashion Market

Handmade’s “Everything Fashion” Market will feature a sophisticated mix of over 80 designers, showcasing original designs from clothing to jewellery, hats, scarves, shoes and accessories for men, women and children.

Talented local and interstate designers including Rockstars and Royalty, The Scarf Project and Billy Mac will be at the market as well as vintage seller, Material Pleasures.

At the National Convention Centre from 10am to 4pm this Saturday 5 May. Find out more here.


Dirty Jamming

Get your good self to the AIS Arena at 6:30pm this Saturday 5 May for some graceful yet hardcore roller derby action with Dirty Jamming!

In the yellow and purple corner, all the way from the salty coastal city of Newcastle, come Newcastle Roller Derby League’s Dockyard Dames. In the high-vis green and electric purple corner are Canberra’s own Vice City Rollers.

Come and have the time of your life and cheer on a team…but remember, no-one puts the Rollers in a corner!

More info and tickets here.



Witness Q Lab at Questacon-The National Science and Technology Centre.

Q Lab is a dynamic and experimental environment that allows you to ask questions and find your own answers. See live scientific demonstrations performed by Questacon science communicators and visiting scientists.

Look at the world up close with microscopes and high-speed slow-motion footage. The Q Lab experience will be constantly evolving to keep up-to-date with the scientific world.

While you’re at Questcon, catch their newest exhibit, ExciteQ!

Open daily from 9am to 5pm.

The Art of Play

The Art of Play celebrates artists who look at the world with a smile. An exhibition for the young and the young-at-heart, come discover a fantastical fountain and a gleeful tower of toys; a wrapped enigma and an invisible bird.

See the world afresh, with works by artists including John Baldessari, Mike Brown, Richard Tipping, Robert Rooney, Peter Tully and Louise Weaver.

Play embraces painting, photography, prints and sculpture from across the National Gallery of Australia’s remarkable collection. This exhibition reminds us of the importance of play in an artist’s practice, and in our lives.

At the National Gallery of Australia until 24 June 2012.


ANU Film Group

The ANU Film Group has been operating in Canberra for over 45 years and is one of Canberra’s worst kept movie secrets as, over the years, so many people have either been members, or have come along as guests to enjoy a movie or two.

The theatre is at the corner of Fellows and Garran Roads at the ANU, but everyone is welcome to come along…it’s a fun, community way to see movies on the big screen. And a big screen it is! The theatre is set up with an 8.5m wide screen, Dolby Surround Sound and screens movies from actual film.

There are a range of films on the programme to suit everyone – whether you have a crush on Twlight’s Jacob or Edward, love a feel good chick flick like New Years Eve or something a little more serious like Martha Marcy May Marlene or The Iron Lady. The Group works on a membership basis. Everyone is welcome to join and once you pay your membership fee there are no additional costs. It’s just $60 for the year, $35 for a half year or $15 or a week.

For more info and the full programme (you can join up when you get there) go to


Eugene von Guérard: Nature Revealed

Eugene von Guérard: Nature Revealed features over 150 works, including many of von Guérard’s beloved iconic landscapes, several beautifully illustrated sketch books, and some never-before-seen paintings. Explore the magnificent Australian, New Zealand and European landscapes he captured through his detailed brushstrokes and breathtaking compositions.

Eugene von Guérard (1811-1901) is arguably Australia’s, and certainly Victoria’s, most important colonial landscape painter. Born in Vienna and trained as a painter in the European art centres of Rome, Naples and Düsseldorf; von Guérard migrated to Australia in 1852.

At the National Gallery of Australia until 15 July 2012.

External – Internal

In the latest exhibition by ANCA studio artist Carmel McCrow, she explores Wassily Kandinsky’s notion that “every phenomenon can be experienced in two ways. These two ways are not random, but bound up with the phenomenon – they are derived from the nature of the phenomena, from two characteristics of the same, external and internal”

Showing at the ANCA Gallery in Dickson from Wednesday 25 April to Sunday 6 May 2012

Stitches in the Night

Turkish born Perth artist Zuhal Kuvan-Mills is inspired by Australian Sustainable, Organic Agriculture and has dedicated her artistic practice to reflecting her thoughts about the environment and conservation.

These Certified Organic fibre textiles powerfully invite discussion around human rights issues and, in particular violence against women. Her rugs and quilts evoke domestic spaces and act as a canvas to women’s everyday lives under violence.

Included in Stitches in the Night is Kuvan-Mills’ artwork Maze, an installation of Certified Organic rugs, which recreates for the viewer the trapped feeling of many female victims who suffer in silence.

Showing until 6 May at M16 Artspace in Griffith.

Also at M16 is Remains of Fire – an exhibition of paintings and photography that explore the emotional experience and impact of fire; and Element or Process - a collection of small oil paintings on canvas which explore possibilities, ideas and inspiration drawn from the environment. Fire, earth, water and air experienced in extremes or times of change lead two mature artists, Ian Robertson and Marje Seymour, to express ideas in harmonious but different ways.

Art in the Garden with Friends

The Art in the Gardens with Friends exhibition features 67 botanical paintings and drawings dedicated to Australian bush tucker and other native plants.

Curated by the Friends Botanical Art Group, the exhibition brings together both amateur and practicing artists who have a special interest in Australian native plants. The artists seek to portray plants found in the Australian National Botanic Gardens living collection, some of which can be difficult for artists to find elsewhere.

On display at the Australian National Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre Gallery until 13 May.

Look! The Art of Australian Picture Books Today

Explore the diversity of picture books being created by Australian illustrators over the past decade with Look!

See original artwork, sketches and drawings by more than 40 Australian illustrators, including Bob Graham, Jeannie Baker, Ann James, Shaun Tan, Graeme Base, Leigh Hobbs and Terry Denton.

Celebrating the National Year of Reading, 2012, this exhibition encourages and promotes visual literacy amongst young children through engagement and participation.

Showing until 10 June at Canberra Museum and Gallery.

Karl Wiebke

For Melbourne artist Karl Wiebke, the process of painting is very much the subject of his art.

This survey exhibition focuses on Wiebke’s painting, presenting series of works in which the artist has set up different processes to explore the nature of painting itself, teasing out the properties and possibilities of the medium.

Showing at Drill Hall Gallery until 13 May 2012.

Open Work

Open Work features the prodigious talent of two of Australia’s most awarded artists, Giles Bettison and Jenni Kemarre Martiniello.

Both artists are inspired and influenced by traditional textiles practices and forms. Giles Bettison references the lace making traditions of Venice and Jenni Kemarre Martiniello, the indigenous Australian traditional forms of the fish and eel traps.

Showing at the Canberra Glassworks until 3 May.

Russell Drysdale at War

The Australian War Memorial is paying tribute to one of Australia’s leading modernist painters, Sir Russell Drysdale, in a small exhibition, Russell Drysdale at War.

Drysdale is best known for his original interpretations of Australia’s outback landscape and its people of the late twentieth century, a period of great social change. During the Second World War he also produced a significant collection of works exploring the effects of war and the loneliness and displacement felt by many Australians based in rural communities.

At the AWM until 1 December 2012.

National Photographic Portrait Prize

See the best photographic portraits by the best. The annual National Photographic Portrait Prize intends to promote the very best in contemporary photographic portraiture by professional and aspiring Australian photographers.

With the generous support of Visa, the National Portrait Gallery offers a prize of $25,000 for the most outstanding photographic portrait.

At the National Portrait Gallery until 20 May 2012.


Nurses: From Zululand to Afghanistan

Discover the story of nursing in overseas conflicts at the Australian War Memorial. This important aspect of Australia’s wartime experience is often neglected. Many women served in dangerous conditions. Like other Australian service personnel, many paid the ultimate price.

The display draws on the Memorial’s rich collection of photographs, private records and personal objects to trace the involvement of nurses from the first known Australian contribution in the Zulu War of 1879 to operations in Afghanistan today.

On display until 1 September.

The Life of Patrick White

Celebrating the centenary of Patrick White’s birth, this exhibition showcases the Nobel Laureate’s achievements and his forceful presence in Australia’s cultural life.

Explore items from White’s personal collection, including letters, notebooks, paintings, photographs and unpublished manuscripts.

At the National Library of Australia from this Friday 13 April.

Travelling the Silk Road

Step 1000 years back in time to experience the sights, sounds and stories of the greatest trading route in history in this new exhibition from the American Museum of Natural History, New York.

Prepare to embark on a thrilling journey along the greatest trading route in history – the legendary Silk Road. Explore the ancient cities of Asia and the Middle East over six centuries, where spectacular sights, exquisite silks and rousing stories await.

Remarkable dioramas, fascinating interactives and impressive artefacts will amaze children and adults alike on this adventure along the Silk Road, the world’s oldest international highway.

At the National Museum of Australia.

Traversing Antarctica: the Australian Experience

Imagine life in a land of ice and blizzards. What motivates people to venture to a place of such extremes as Antarctica? One word: discovery. Traversing Antarctica: the Australian experience reveals how Australia’s connection with the frozen continent has developed over 100 years since the 1911–14 Australasian Antarctic Expedition led by Douglas Mawson.

A wealth of documentary material from the National Archives unveils this fascinating history.

A rare collection of original equipment and diaries from early expeditions is displayed together for the first time as well as inspiring interactive displays and imagery.

At the National Archives of Australia until 9 September.

Treasures Gallery

Discover new treasures as the National Library of Australia reveals more of its 10 million item-strong collection in the Treasures Gallery.

See manuscripts from authors and poets such as Christina Stead and Mem Fox; works from the Ducie collection of First Fleet art; and Norman Lindsay’s 1918 Fall-in recruitment poster for the Government of the Commonwealth of Australia.

Visitors will notice other changes, including pages turned on items such as the Draft Constitution, Keith Murdoch’s Gallipoli Letter, and new notes passed between Charles Kingsford-Smith and Charles Ulm in the flight cockpit.


Autumn Craft Workshops

Take time out, withdraw from the bustle of everyday life to relax, take refreshments, learn new skills, retrieve your creativity and socialise with like-minded people.

Queanbeyan’s Benedict House will be abuzz with energy and creative pursuits in all the rooms with their Autumn Workshops.

On Wednesday evenings there will be will be creative pursuits in all the rooms including Paper Craft, Creating with Crochet, Designing and Making Jewellery.

$110 for 4 week course or $35 per class – Every Wednesday evening 6.00pm – 8.00pm until 15 May.

Find out the details here!



About Author

Amanda Whitley is the founder and director of HerCanberra. In her 'spare time', she instructs zumba, loves to cook (and eat), and wrangles two gorgeous little girls. She's done everything from present the tv news to operate a stop and go sign and is passionate about connecting Canberra women.

View all Amanda Whitley posts.

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