MonthApril 2021

Signed Dali etchings to go on display at The Artists Shed

The Artist and the Historian
Film, Dali, the Gallipoli Prize and Lake Light sculpture
Dali dry point etchings on exhibition at The Artists Shed from 15 May 2021

Margaret Hadfield and Kathryn Spurling work in a creative partnership dubbed The Artist and the Historian. The vast space of The Artists Shed in Wollongong Street Fyshwick is home to classes, exhibitions, events and Artistic Vision Gallery, an enterprise founded by the pair to find and rescue abandoned original Australian art.

Barbie talks with Margaret Hadfield and Kathryn Spurling
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Peter Rodgers – Life, Death and Other Distractions

Ginninderra Press, Australia, 2021

With his previous book Beethoven’s Tenth (self published, 2021), Peter Rodgers has proved himself to be both an astute observer of human nature and contemporary society and a highly skilled and entertaining writer.

This second publication for 2021 reveals the same keen eye and an often wry view of the world around him, but also a practised hand in the art of short story writing. The medium requires discipline in self-editing, precision in the choice of vocabulary and the capacity to quickly and deftly build character.

Peter Rodgers talks about Life, Death and other Distractions
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Judy Rafferty – Inside the Room

Ginninderra Press, Australia, 2020

In her professional life as a counselling psychologist, Judy Rafferty spends a lot of time listening to people. Some of the poetry in this collection is the result of hearing stories from people who needed to share them, to unburden their feelings by talking. The author unburdens hers by writing.

Barbie talks to Judy Rafferty about Inside the Room
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Evoke: Beethoven and Berwald – CIMF concert Seven and Three

The Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra in association with Canberra International Music Festival (CIMF)
With co-artistic director Rachael Beesley, co-artistic director Nicole van Bruggen, Daniel Yeadon and Neal Peres da Costa
11am and 1pm, Sunday 2 May 2021
Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture15 Blackall Street Barton ACT

This series evokes the salons and living rooms of the early 19th century with the orchestra in chamber music mode.


  • Ludwig van Beethoven: 3 Equali for four trombones, WoO 30
  • Franz Berwald: Grand Septet in B-flat major for clarinet, horn, bassoon, violin, viola, cello & bass
  • Ludwig van Beethoven: Trio in E-flat major, Op.38 for clarinet, cello and fortepiano (after Septet, Op.20)

CIMF says of this concert:  Berwald’s Septet modelled on the Beethoven Septet that became a Trio. This is the story of a famous Viennese composer who made a determined living out of music – Beethoven – and an unlucky Swede who had to resort to orthopaedia and glassblowing to sustain his career – Berwald. Now recognised as a true original and Sweden’s claim to classical fame, Franz takes his rightful place on the concert stage alongside Ludwig. for all CIMF information and bookings

There are also performances in various other venues. See

Lost in Transit

Tuggeranong Arts Centre
29 and 30 April and 1 May 2021 at 7.30pm
Produced by Kat Reed
Musical Direction by Dianna Nixon

Created and performed by transgender and gender diverse people, this musical theatre production tells the story of Hunter, a postman tasked with the delivery of a mysterious parcel to an unusual apartment block. The people he meets there help him on a journey of self-discovery.

Barbie spoke with Lost in Transit producer, Kat Reed
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Carole Osmotherly – Paintings on Silk

28 April to 16 May 2021
Humble House Gallery
93 Wollongong Street, Fyshwick
Open Wednesday to Sunday 10am to 4pm

Meet the artist session 1 May from 12 noon to 3pm

Many artists are responding this year to a deep sense of sadness over the loss of so many trees during the bushfire storms of 2019-20. Trees in their many forms appear in a number of exhibitions I have visited this year, depicting both sorrow over the destruction and death and joy and wonder at the regrowth and fecundity.

Barbie speaks to Carole Osmotherly about the exhibition
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Chris Slotemaker de Bruine – Brilliant Landscapes with a difference

Kyeema Gallery, 13 Gladstone Street, Hall ACT
Until 24 May 2021
Open Thursday to Monday 11.30am to 5pm

It will not be surprising to visitors to Chris Slotemaker de Bruine’s exhibition at Kyeema Gallery that he was the founder of Canberra’s Floriade. His work expresses his regard for Nature and his keen observation of its detail, colour and variety.

Chris Slotemaker de Bruine talks about his exhibition
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Damian Balassone – Strange Game in a Strange Land

Wilkinson Publishing, Melbourne, Australia, 2019

It may seem strange to some regular readers of poetry that AFL footy has found a place in the genre. However, to my mind, the job of the poet is to distil experiences, observations and thoughts to an economical form – and what the subject matter may be is of less importance than the communication itself.

Barbie talks to Damian Balassone about Strange Game in a Strange Land
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Canberra International Music Festival at Belconnen Arts Centre

Saturday 8 May 2021
10am to 4.30pm

In five venues around the Arts Centre, music of different styles will be available all day, a smorgasbord for visitors. This is something new for the CIMF and another of the partnerships made possible through extra arts funding responding to COVID.

Barbie visited Belconnen Arts Centre to record this interview with Live Programs Officer, Chenoeh Miller
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Review: Kill the Major by Paul Malone

First published 2020 in Malaysia by Strategic Information and Research Development Centre
Republished in Australia in 2020 by For Pity Sake Publishing

This review by Dr A.T. Ross is republished by kind permission of For Pity Sake Publishing

Despite its catchy and slightly misleading title, this is an important work on a long-ignored part of the Second World War in North Borneo.

Major Tom Harrisson led a party of 42 soldiers sent to gather intelligence prior to the landings of Australian forces in Borneo in 1945. Little was known about the natives, the terrain, or Japanese operations in the area of prime interest, the border ranges of British North Borneo and the Dutch East Indies.

Barbie spoke to Paul Malone about Kill the Major
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Luke Cornish – Together Alone

Site-specific, large-scale permanent mural commissioned by The Street in partnership with the City Renewal Authority

Luke Cornish, with assistance from Dan Maginnity (aka byrd), is creating an artwork on site over four weeks in April, using a combination of handmade stencils and paint. The artwork’s design is inspired by its location and conversations with people living, working and visiting the City West Precinct, including artists, audiences and residents.

Luke Cornish talks with Barbie about the Together Alone mural


Richard speaks to Artistic Director Caroline Stacey about The Street’s history
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Trauma Awareness for Teaching Dance

Ausdance ACT Dance Week event
with Glenn Flanagan, Team Leader, Training and Development, Companion House
Belconnen Arts Centre
2-5pm Friday 7 May 2021

Applications due 4pm Thursday 29 April 2021

If you are interested in developing your dance teaching skills, this three hour training program could be for you. It is focussed on an awareness of how to best teach dance to people of all ages, from refugee and other trauma backgrounds.

Barbie speaks with Glenn Flanagan from Companion House
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Tabitha Bird – the emporium of imagination

Viking, an imprint of Penguin Books, Australia 2021

Intimacy and loss are the stuff of this compassionate story – love and grief. Taking as its inspiration the true story of the Wind Phone, a real place, in Iwate Prefecture, northeast Japan, the emporium of imagination is a deeply touching piece of magical realism set in Boonah (also a real place in Queensland).

Tabitha Bird talks about the emporium of imagination
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18 to 20 June 2021
Civic Centre, Ulladulla

With a schools program and a diverting line-up of authors and events, Storyfest is back in business under the patronage of author Markus Zusak and artistic direction of author Meredith Jaffé. The program will soon be published on the festival website

Barbie talks to Meredith Jaffé about Storyfest
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Stronger than Fiction Documentary Film Series 2021

Dendy Cinema, Canberra City
First film – The Mole Agent 2pm on 25 April 2021

Stronger than Fiction (STF) is back after a COVID hiatus. However, rather than screening over a short sharp period, films will be presented monthly., still provide the opportunity for regular get-togethers with like-minded film goers, for Q&As with directors and experts, and for performances by local musicians.

Hannah de Feyter talks about Strong Than Fiction
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