Missing Link – only seven days now

Gandhi’s take on Miranda Devine’s attempt to rescue fellow RWDB pundit Caroline Overington from her own ham-fisted effort at electoral rorting by the time-honoured RWDB gambit of labelling lefties “humourless”.  Nitpickers might observe that Miranda is actually a Fairfax Angel

Another bumper weekend edition of Missing Link, compiled by Saint in a Straitjacket, James Farrell, Gilmae, Darlene Taylor and Ken Parish, with editing by the latter.  Enjoy. 

1. News and Politics Stuff

Horck at Bilegrip provides a useful rundown on the unfolding Coalition reaction to the Auditor-General’s revelation of their Roz Kelly-esque rorting of the  Regional Partnerships program.  Peter Martin helpfully sets out the remarkably speedy ministerial grant approval performance on the afternoon the writs were issued for the 2004 election.  Tim Dunlop also covers Partnershipgate1, inexplicably accepting that “funding decisions being taken by Ministers should not be seen as a problem”.  Presumably Tim also doesn’t see any problem with Brendon Nelson interfering in ARC grant decisions??

Andrew Leigh explored the broader issue of blatant Coalition porkbarrelling earlier this week even before the Partnershipgate story broke, and was even quoted as an expert in a SMH article: 

Dr Leigh said: “It seems statistically improbable that Coalition electorates are more needy of technical skills training, more lacking in disability advocates, have greater respite caring needs, and are more award-worthy in the areas of vocational education and aged care”.

Gandhi gleefully follows Tony Abbott’s latest campaign trail brain spasms, as does Roger Migently, who also continues his “sack Mick Keelty” campaign.

“Slim Pickens” seems to think the Labor advertising targeting John Howard is a tad too polite:

Apparently Labor has been running an effective TV ad this week with a working family saying sorry Johnny, its not personal – just time for a fresh team. However, as some of my coarser  musical colleagues would put it, Its nothing personal Johnny – its just that youre a pack of feckin conts.

Peter Martin reveals the numerous dodgy techniques employed in producing the interest rate chart John Howard used at his Monday “campaign launch”.

Andrew Bartlett notes the scant mention of indigenous problems in the campaign launches. He gives to Labor for at least having policy documents on the web,

But its hard not to think that addressing the massive and entrenched inequality between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians just isnt a priority for the leader of either major party.

Noting the U-turn in the PM’s rhetoric on surpluses, Jeremy resolves the paradox as follows:

Is it because all your vaunted “economic management” credentials boil down to is that if you flog off everything the country owned and cut basic services it enables you to hoard money to splurge every three years on pre-election bribes? That the surpluses showed nothing more than that you were a canny political operator, and that the line that they were important was nothing more than a facile con designed to fool the economically illiterate?

David Bath welcomes Labor’s promise to discount HECS obligations for maths and science teachers. He suggests some extensions and revisions. On the subject of skills shortages, Ken Lovell discusses the case of the missing apprentices in a prelude to a critique of neo-classical labour market theory.

Arguably the ultimate comment on “me-too-ism” is this hilarious YouTube by that master of the laconic Red Symons:

Meanwhile, John Quiggin contends that an important reason for the Government’s fall from favour is its obsession with waging of a culture war that no one else is interested in. Among other things,

the factoid-based, point-scoring, style of argument that goes with the culture wars eventually leads to complete insulation from factual reality. Any proposition, no matter how ridiculous, can be defended in this way, long after the average person has seen through it. This has been most obvious in relation to climate change and Iraq, but there are a whole string of issues where the culture warriors have imprisoned themselves in an orthodoxy every bit as constricting as the largely imaginary monolithic leftism they are supposed to be confronting.

Re. the Media Watch expose on Caroline Overington’s lobbying of Danielle Ecuyer, Tim Lambert is not convinced by the ‘only joking defense.’ Ben Eltham at Polliegraph thinks ‘the real victim is the reputation of The Australian’. Apathetic Gam agrees, and Kim at LP has more links. Speaking of Gam, here are his minutes of the Downer-McLelland debate. Unlike the debate itself, this post should not be missed under any circumstances.

Andrew Bartlett sees the Ul-Haque case as further evidence that our ant-terrorist laws make us more secure rather than less — certainly so if you happen to be Muslim.

The saga of Kevin the Greengrocer: forget fresh, our resident RWDBs recommend discarded vegetables and rats in the kitchen.2

Live by the law, die by the law. It’s the law of the bungle.

Tim notes the cognitive dissonance of a gay Mr Been-Here-For-Three-Years whinging about Nation Imperfect.

It was a week in which the blogosphere seemed to turn a corner, moving from uncertainty to bitter hysteria or relief, depending on whether one prefers Howard or Rudd. Slim re-evaluates prior predictions. Harry Clarke gets a little hysterical. Ken Parish is thinking of what next, specifically for the public service, trying to look beyond hit lists. This despite Possum Comitatus passing the news from George Megalogenis that the AC Neilson primary vote graph has the primary votes close enough that a Coalition win is now well within the margin of error.  And “Free Dr Haneef” is having conniptions about the possibility that flood damage-induced disruption to power supplies in Victoria could cause huge blackouts during a heatwave predicted next week and cause voters to turn in anger against Labor!!!

Idiot punters don’t realise the Libs privatised the power system, then they panic, and the fuckwits get back in.

Vest muses on employee rights to use employer supplied resources while off the clock.3

Joshua Gans applauds Labor’s announced intention to take on Telstra and achieve a more viable operational separation between its retail and landline infrastructure functions, and

2. Life and Other Serious Stuff

John Ray posts on attempts to equate Islamophobia with anti-Semitism but can’t understand Little Green Football’s definition of racism: it seems too “leftist.” And yet, one of his co-bloggers seems to be lauding pre-apartheid South Africa, to prove his anti-leftist credentials.4

In a couple of longer but very readable posts, tigtog examines the alleged intellectual foundations of the PUA (pickup artist) culture, and finds them hopelessly shaky; and tells the amazing story of the couple who drove their “friends’ ” daughter to suicide with a Myspace hoax. The whole thing has a whiff of the hoax, but if not it’s sure to be picked up by the MSM soon.

Tim Lambert accuses the NYT‘s Andrew Revkin of falling for the fallacy of the middle ground.

Steve is still talking about models.

dr faustus mentions a proposed new methodology to rank Australian universities.5

Don Arthur finds that post-war reconstruction of West Germany is not so much a refutation of Klein’s The Shock Doctrine that it is an example that the shock doctrine is necessarily bad.6

Sometime Missing Link team member Peter Black highlights a paper he co-authored which analyses legal risks associated with educational and other institutions utilising Web 2.0 social networking platforms like YouTube, MySpace and Second Life

Kerryn “Pavlov’s Cat” Goldsworthy’s shot of sunset through her garden boungainvillea. A photographic cliche perhaps (as she observes) but a lovely one.  

3. The Yartz

While Lindsay Lohan gets only eighty-four minutes in prison for being a naughty girl, Alison Croggon suffers through hours of torture aka The Madwoman of Chaillot. The lesson for today kids is that it’s better to be naughty (and famous) than to be a theatre critic. According to Croggon:

We all have them. Those mornings when you wake up and recall the events of the previous evening with the desperate hope that it was all a dream. You call your friends to check the facts: was it really that bad? And, very gently, they tell you that, yes, it was.

More best books of 2007 fun over at Matilda. This time the list is from Amazon. This morning I ordered Karl Pilkington’s Happy slapped by a jellyfish via Amazon, and I will wait until I get it before making any lists of best books.

It’s too bad more blokes don’t have Devendra Banhart’s style, which could be described as a cross between Peaches, Madonna and some silly old hippy trying to do drag. You can see a picture of Devendra and read about his latest recording at Off the Record. Says Record:

I think I have come to a conclusion that Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon is possibly Devendra Banhart’s best release to date.

Teachers and students should both find the comic strips appearing on Galaxy worth a chuckle. Of course, teachers are too busy moaning at the moment to find anything amusing.

While watching The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle last night, it occurred to me that the idea Nancy Spungen was the reason for the decline/death (how ironic) of Sid Vicious will never die. It seems male punks and male historians of punk can’t accept the fact that Spungen was young and unwell. There’s a relatively recent post on Book Addicts about Malcolm Butt’s Sid Vicious: Rock ‘n’ Roll Star. The book can be purchased from Polyester in Fitzroy, although it’s as deep as a disco song.

In a possibly unique  treble of politics, visual art and poetry all in the one post, Andrew at The Art Life ventures some mediocre examples of electoral haiku.  Can Troppo readers do better?

First the Poms with pink cricket balls, now the Windies!! I blame that cunning devil Geoff Honnor.

4. T.S.S

(troppo sports stadium)

It isn’t just elections. There is an admonition on After Grog Blog that there are other chickens that should also not be counted before they win by an innings and some runs.

 Tony also remains on guard and forever vigilant about Murali’s clearly illegal action, even if Warne is a wuss:

Genius is doing the right thing brilliantly, not doing the wrong thing to gain an unfair advantage. Many a “bowler” would get Test wickets if he was allowed to bend his arm like Murali. Try it yourself. Grab a ball and yo-yo flick it down the hallway; youll turn it at right-angles into the next room.

Imagine, if you will, the great Viv Richards killing two Pommie fielders with a magnificent boundary clubbed to the covers off a loose delivery while wearing this.

5. Mad, Bad, Sad and Glad

John Surname interviews Mr Rudd and Mr Howard.

And as we enter the single digit countdown of sleeps to Armageddon, a public service announcement from Andrew Landeryou: knock yourselves out.

Peter Black draws attention to an article which (somewhat hyperbolically?) predicts the death of email in favour of instant messaging.7

Peter is also excited about a newly released Internet TV delivery system called Miro.  Apparently it delivers huge quantities of High Definition  content using BitTorrent.8

Long time blogger and muscular dystrophy sufferer Chris Fryer is righteously angry about a hospital stuff-up that almost killed him.

Peter Black notes a US judge who has cited Homer Simpson to establish a basic proposition about the formation of a unilateral contract.  D’oh!

Lyn Calcutt explores the notion that we can learn a lot about our political leaders by observing their spouses’ and their similarities to pop culture characters:

Janette has caused some confusion over whether she’s Carol Brady or Saruman, keen supporter of Sauron the Dark Lord.

Caro thinks Therese Rein resonates better with thoroughly modern Australia. She’s a successful business woman who doesn’t need her husband’s name to know who she is. We won’t be getting any prehistoric, white picket fence, Hyacinth Bucket pretensions from Therese. She’s the political wife equivalent of Xena, Warrior Princess.

Meanwhile, comistriphero goes on a motorbike photo-odyssey through the scenic “litmus test” electorate of Eden-Monaro (aargh!!).

Lastly, can someone explain to me what the hell this means?

  1. someone’s bound to use that cliche so it might as well be me ~ KP []
  2. Is there a Coles-Woolworths analogy in there somewhere too?~saint []
  3. Bah! Facebook. It’s all memes and wank anyway.~gilmae []
  4. There is Blair’s law. There is Shakespeare. And I’ve been to South Africa. ~saint []
  5. As to concerns on how to rank Arts degrees, surely measuring the number of graduates who move up from the fries to assistant manager would be appropriate.~gilmae []
  6. I suspect Naomi would agree with Don and argue that it is deliberately induced shock  that is the unethical bit.~gilmae []
  7. Mind you, I’m currently evaluating the merits of the competing messaging systems with a view to providing them to CDU’s entire law student body next year.  My current favourite is Microsoft Live Messenger, largely because of its video capability ~ KP []
  8. I’d be more impressed if Peter could explain how anyone in Australia could actually make any more than token use of such systems without blowing out the monthly limits on their “unlimited” broadband accounts ~ KP []

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Sacha
14 years ago

It seems to be in a similarly obscure place as this: http://www.frankhatchiii.com/

glen
14 years ago

It is a brief note on the temporality of the uncanny moments where we are surprised by ourselves in the world. I suggest this is a good thing, and a key attribute of being human.

1) give up on existential and social securities because they colonise the future by way of extrapolating the present; if the future is colonise through expectation then it is not a surprise.

2) The surprise is both a passage and an impasse.

3) The moments of surprise are good because they allow us to do things in a way that is really different; these are real opportunities, not the false opportunities of living up to the expectations of others.

4) These moments of surprise and the necessary enlarging of our capacity for imagining how to embrace opportunity (rather than simply learning another’s expectation) are better indication of being human than any truth or platitude.

And, Ken, I submit my dissertation in about two weeks, so if you want something easier to read of mine, then you can check it out when it is available through my library in about 2 to 6 months. Or you can check out my writing already available online.

cs
cs
14 years ago

Rupert’s Angels is one crazy fantasy.

Kevin Rennie
14 years ago

News from Kalgoorlie:
1. Barry Haase has been denying porkbarrelling in Carnarvon, strange given that his page on the Libs website is a list of local grants which he claims credit for.
2. Someone keeps pinching his campaign trailer. My mum would have said look close to home.

The Worst of Perth
14 years ago

I think event mechanics is an English language religious blog translated into german, retranslated into french (by Germans), and machine translated back into english. Glen, do you write all the comments and replies? I love it, even though my question on hoons was spammed out. I still want to know, are we pro or anti hoon? either way, The Worst of perth is linking baby. Linking big time.

Kevin Rennie
14 years ago

News from Kalgoorlie:
1. Barry Haase has been denying porkbarrelling in Carnarvon, strange given that his page on the Libs website is a list of local grants which he claims credit for.
2. Someone keeps pinching his campaign trailer. My mum would have said look close to home.
Labor View from Broome‘ latest video is: John Howard’s Dead Parrots Society.

glen
14 years ago

I am not an advocate, but a researcher!

when did you write the hoon comment, i can check my spaminator

glen
14 years ago

found it and replied

dr faustus
14 years ago

The whole thing has a whiff of the hoax, but if not its sure to be picked up by the MSM soon.

I suspect that whether it’s a hoax and whether it is picked up by the MSM are actually not related.

gilmae
14 years ago

The word on the interwebs now is that some enterprising types tracked down the families and outed them. If it is a hoax and some innocent family got fingered, it is going to be a lawyer rodeo.

AJ
AJ
14 years ago

Is it just me, or do the Western Heart posts get worse every week? (not that you shouldn’t include them or anything)

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

That’s a particularly stupid banner image.

The sad slide at Troppo continues. It’s no more than a pale imitation of LP. It’s all the more sad as LP started life as a pale imitation of Troppo.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

The sad slide at Troppo continues. Its no more than a pale imitation of LP. Its all the more sad as LP started life as a pale imitation of Troppo.

And the alternative to Australian group blogs that provide material ranging from local blogosphere roundups to sardonic bear-based comics to informed discussions of industry policy and software IP issues to fiendish chess puzzles is what exactly Rob? Not like anyone is flocking to what you offer online.

The internet is the freest market that’s ever existed. There’s no barriers to your entrance to demonstrate how it should be done. No barriers except your own attitude, energy and ability to muster quality contributers and original observations.

Unconstructive criticism of a coherent community really is the mark of a capon.

Let me show you how constructive criticism with a snark in the tail should work.

Yo, Missing Link dudes! AJ’s raised an interesting point above. I know ML is bending over backwards to be all centralist and neutral gathering up the best without fear or favour and that both your resources and the well you dip into are clearly limited by time and geography. But really can’t you regualurly come up with more intelligent right wing balance than just Tim Blair, Typing Tim and the few remaining adults at Catallaxy?

Unless of course you’re deliberately linking to sad old cranks like John Ray as some kind of commie subversive attempt to discredit the grand tradition of wry, worldy, well-informed and sophistry-free commentary that used to be a hallmark of the best conservative thinkers. I’m sure such Australian bloggers are still out there. Hell, if I wasn’t a lazy drunk, I’d be out there digging ’em up for you – or at least impersonating one from time to time.

Hrummph! of St Kilda.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

Esprit d’escalier moment.

for:
“Unconstructive criticism of a coherent community really is the mark of a capon.”

read:
“Unconstructive criticism of a fertile community really is the mark of a capon.”

Got ambushed by an addictive attraction to alliteration there.

saint
14 years ago

OK I ‘fess up.

I’ve got the RWDB (separate category to the moderate right) while helping out. And Nabs is right: I would dearly love to read some wry, worldy, well-informed and sophistry-free commentary that used to be a hallmark of the best conservative thinkers. Perhaps I’ve tried too hard to include some representative posts from that end of the spectrum…instead of focussing solely on quality…in which case…but then again…

Still, AJ raises a question that..ahem…I have raised in a different way off blog.

I am sure we would all be happy for Rob to suggest some good blogs with either less stupidity or better humour (even if I found that mock up rather funny :-o)

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
14 years ago

“It probably helps to relieve the frustration and depression of watching John Howard almost certainly lead his Coalition government down the plughole of political history.”

“Almost” certainly? What’s this “almost?”

Fyodor
14 years ago

Im sure Rob knows that very well but he just likes whingeing.

Rob’s new whingeing is a pale imitation of his old whingeing. You’d only please the bloke if you could Furtwangle yourselves a wall-to-wall Sophie Massonathon.

cs
cs
14 years ago

Almost certainly? Whats this almost?

Ah Geoff, dear Geoff, oh for the giddy confidence of the unaligned!

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
14 years ago

Well, I concede there is the example of the 1948 US Presidential election when Harry Truman was emphatically written off before election day and emerged victorious the morning after, waving a copy of the less than prescient “Chicago Tribune” sporting the banner headline “Dewey defeats Truman.”

But, to paraphrase Senator Lloyd Bentsen’s famous riposte to Dan Quayle, “Prime Minister, you’re no Harry Truman.”

skepticlawyer
14 years ago

I may even be able to drop in and edit a Christmas edition or two after term finishes… just to give Ken a bit of a break.

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Thats a particularly stupid banner image.

The sad slide at Troppo continues. Its no more than a pale imitation of LP. Its all the more sad as LP started life as a pale imitation of Troppo.

I forgot that I’d posted this comment. I just thought I’d come back and say how much I agreed with it.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

I forgot that Id posted this comment. I just thought Id come back and say how much I agreed with it.

You’re not a happy little camper in this point in your life are you Rob? Snide, bitchy and pointless comments all over the place. OK, we all go through muddy stretches on our own roads to infinity. But why take your current lack of traction out on others with whom you often enjoyed a civil relationship in the past? For no visible point whatsoever?

True gentlemen and ladies never complain about anything they should be themselves able to resolve, remedy or stimulate others into doing so.

You don’t like the tone here? Then what’s stopping you from raising it?

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Thanks for the humbling moral readout, Nabakov.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

Humbling for you, perhaps yes. Moral for moi, certainly not.

For fucks sake, you’ve been visibly shrinking into yourself online over the past few years. From a smart, worldly and sociable commenter into some crabby bitchy old bloke.

Buy a flash shirt and the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever, join a Tango class, go to Paris or Barcelona instead of Salzburg next time, listen to the Monkees as well as Beethoven, streak at least once during a major ceremony, grow a porno mo, get a pet or kill a pet, have a good bonk while sporting a superhero costume, avoid blogs for a month, take flying lessons, write a novel, raise triffids, hell, something, anything man.

I’m not the most observant, empathetic or sensitive of people but even an egoistical drunk like me can tell you’re no longer who you were. And that you’re not happy about it.

Even if I can’t change, doesn’t mean you can not not change.

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Take your head out of your arse, Nabakov. The only thing you’re right about is ‘egotistical drunk’.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

Even the quality of your repartee Rob now feels as sad and stale as a cheap serviced apartment for the recently separated.

C’mon now, surely you’re still capable of rejoinders that smack of somewhat more wit, spit and pointed shit that just exasperated expletives bellowed through a car window on a hot, humid smoggy day down Parramatta Road.

I’d like to think so. But if you wanna prove me wrong, why then go right ahead.

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Ah, Nabakov. You are Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, but without surround sound. Not the character, mind, just the titles.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

“You are Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, but without surround sound”

Not much toot left in your whistle mate. Here’s how the point I assume you’re trying to make could be much funnier and more barbed.

“You are Buck Rogers in the 19th Century. Thank god surround sound wasn’t invented back then.”

“Flash Gordon battling the cheap props like he thinks they’re really real.”

“You remind me of Han Solo. With an extra “d” carefully inserted.”

“At least the Mysterons could revive dead ends.”

“Take the blue pill. Or the red. Whatever. You’ll still wake up as you.”

“Open the brain bay doors, Hal.” “I’m sorry Dave, I’m afraid I can’t do that.”

“In space, no one can hear you scream…at yourself.”

“Do arseholes dream of electric shits?”

“Close Encounters of the Worst Kind”

“That’s one small snark for a dick, one giant sleep for Blogdom.”

“The truth is out there..like you”

“That is illogical”

“You will be assimulated..,into yourself”

“Take your stinking clauses off me, you damned parsing ape!”

“…this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye.”

“That’s it man. Game over man. Game over!”

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

“I’ll be back”

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

I think you missed the point about the titles. Possibly someone may be may be able to help you with it.

You really are a clot, Nabakov.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

“You really are a clot, Nabakov.”

And a through rotter too.

Really Rob, have you got anything left in your quiver beyond the shakes?

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Fool.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

Fool.

?

That kinda hand waving mindless retort uttered at this hour does seriously suggest you’re currently plunged into a morass of boozy self-loathing.

“We’re leaving now. Need a lift?”
“Urggh… fuck off.’
“OK”

Here’s a link that may cheer you up.

Fyodor
14 years ago

Jaysus, boys, you could cut the URST in here with a butter-knife. I think it’s hot-tub-time for you two apr

The Devil Drink
The Devil Drink
14 years ago

Plunging into morasses of boozy self-loathing? Sounds like some good Irish-Jewish-modernist literature. Or maybe a Contiki tour with a third-grade cricket team from Dubbo. Or maybe a rollercoaster ride at anti-Disneyworld.
Whatever, I’m just glad to be of service, people.

Fyodor
14 years ago

Nah, TDD, plunging into molasses of boozy self-loathing is what happens after you allow yourself to drink Bundy & Coke. That, or confected outrage.

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

URST? I thought it was just mutual loathing, but of course I can’t speak for Nabakov.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

Oh I don’t loathe Rob. In fact I feel sorry for the poor old bloke. He used to be a engaged and worldly commentator that could discuss high culture with considerable knowledge and true appreciation.

But in recent times he’s degenerated into small, spiteful and basically empty comments that don’t amount to anything beyond “That’s a load of poo. I don’t like you.”

Take his current snarking over Missing Link, a useful service brought to us free by volunteer labour. Even the more feral members of the blogosphere who don’t like it have least provided criticisms, suggestions or contributions based on something tangible if not always reasonable. If you don’t like something, you should either ignore it, suggest improvements or the very least bitch about it in entertaining fashion.

Yes, I’m concerned about Rob which why is why the other night I was offering tea and sympathy, cheapjack psychology, leaping up in the air to burp and fart simultaneously to crack a smile, some Mensur play and even a link to the best opera ever about split personalities.

But no. I guess some people just wanna enjoy a good personal sulk in public.

Nabakov
Nabakov
14 years ago

My references to “Tales of Hoffman” above are not entirely out of the blue.

Saw an excellent Opera Australia production of “Hoffman” last night. Rosario La Spina was a fine sturdy male lead, Dominica Matthews played the Muse with a nice swaggering brio, John Wegner hammed it up with great glee as Lindorf and his alter egos and Kaneen Breen set out, often successfully, to steal as many scenes as he could as a kinda singing Bruce Spence. And Emma Matthews was brilliant as Stella and all her manifestations, especially as Olympia where she showed a very deft touch with the physical comedy during Les Oiseaux Dans La Charmille.

Down in the pit, they treated Offenbach with the kinda deft gusto that I imagine would have very much appealed to Parisennes enjoying the first flourishings of the Third Republic.

The direction was excellent, especially at moving the chorus on, around and off stage. For the “get your finger out and start writing again” epilogue, the chorus materialised up in the Gods singing back to the stage. It sounded great with the State Theatre acoustics.

The production design was very elegant and witty as well. For example, Spalanzani’s workshop artfully referenced both Jules Verne and the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Sexy steampunk. And some subtle but effective tricks were played with a vast perspective-dwindling and moveable mirror hanging over the stage.

My only complaint is the usual one. How you order the Antonia and Giulietta stories. ‘Antonia’ is more psychologically and narratively powerful as a conclusion but ‘Giulietta’ has more action and the hit single. I prefer ’em in that order but OA went the other way.

On the upside, it meant at intermission that the Gents was full of blokes at the trough, swaying gently from side to side while quietly humming the “Barcarolle”.

All in all a top night out at the Opera. Two boozy thumbs up.

Rob
Rob
14 years ago

Decent review, that, Nabakov. /grudging surprise.