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The Travelling Blog
Almost 2 hours ago I had the pleasure of listening to the Choir of King's College, Cambridge perform a gently, varied selection of English, Italian and Australian choral works in my hometown's cultural stage, the Queensland Performance Arts Centre (QPAC).
Charles Hubert Hastings PARRY (1848-1918)
-Hear My Words, Ye People (1894)
William BYRD (c 1540-1623)
-Sing Joyfully (c 1590)
Giovanni Pierluigi da PALESTRINA (1525-1594)
-DUM complerentur (1569)
Peter SCULTHORPE (born 1929)
-The Birthday of Thy King (1988)
Brett DEAN (born 1961)
-Now Comes the Dawn (2007)
Carl VINE (born 1954)
-Ring Out, Wild Bells (2012)
Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976)
-Hymn to St Cecilia, op27 (1942)
Gabriel FAURE (1845-1924)
-Requiem in D minor, op48 (1887-93)
Short and quick review, here we go. At the start of the first half, I felt shivers down my spine as the organ breathed it's introductory chords. Realising the internationally acclaimed high quality of the choir, I felt a little disappointed when the boys weren't as in-sync as expected (particularly the ends of phrases). However that feeling quickly dissipated when gorgeous harmonisation and textures soared through the spacious hall. I absolutely adored the sweet sensation of light, delicate, youthful soprano voices trickling on top of rich, indulgent, bass lines. Heavenly! Within the choir, I also loved the independent solo voices that pulled in the spotlight every now and again. Yet, alas! Unfortunately as all concerts experience, there's the mood-breaking cough. Can't help it I guess...but worse when people clap in between movements right? Yes indeed, that happened in the Faure. Every. Single. Time. C'mon guys! Let's show others that we Aussies are cultured! It's a multi-movement piece...and following conventions, no clapping between please. The conductor held his hands up in the air, so still, that I was afraid to even breathe. Sorry Dr Stephen Cleobury CBE.
Otherwise, I'm so glad I heard them live! Would love to hear them again - perhaps this time in a church ;)
Thanks Kathryn so much for inviting!
I visited Queensland's Gallery of Modern Art last friday and immediately my phone was shooting off. Welcomed by a celebration of food projects, it sure felt like 'Harvest' (title of current exhibition - until 21 September, free admission) season. I was definitely ready to dig into the crops. Love at first sight, the gorgeous fruit landscape of Shahbazi's Still life: Coconut and other things, took my breath away by its enormous 2D dimension and of course vibrant fruit colours (that could well be identified on a luxurious Hermes scarf). Without a doubt, I absolutely had to take a photo in front of it - resulting the shameless both-hands-in-the-air, cheesy smile photos you see below. Here's a too-much-love/accidental moment: security guard told me to step in front of the canvas a bit more because I was too close to it. Michel Tuffery's Povi tau vaga (The challenge) left a deep impression. From afar you may have recognised the cow and applauded the artist's cow-resembling-work artistry. However the moment you step closer and see what it's made of, you'll find yourself staring at a raging bull, plastered with aluminium, corn beef tins, which are held together by rivets. A mighty creation with a powerful message. Last but not least, I simply could not forget one of Ai Weiwei's artworks that I witnessed on the 1st floor of the gallery. It was Coca Cola vase 2011, a Han dynasty vase that had been destructed by a huge, red Coca Cola advertisement label. This seemingly 'destructive' act questioned the value of an object once placed in a new situation. Han dynasty ceramics were regarded highly because of their 'refined lines, elegant proportions and the quality of their glazes', which was defined and thought of by the art market. Yet once the vase is re-configured with 'Coca Cola', the historically precious status of the vase is disrupted and new contemporary values are placed upon it.
Shirana Shahbazi. Still life: Coconut and other things 2009.
Robert MacPherson. Mayfair: (Swamp rats) Ninety-seven signs 1994-95.
Michel Tuffery. Povi tau vaga (The challenge) (detail) 1999.
Luo Brothers. Untitled (Children with lemonade bottle/Baby and tiger/Kirin beer/Children with storks) 2000.
Tracey Moffatt. From First Jobs series 2008.
Martin Creed. Work no.189 1998.
Nam June Paik. TV cello 2000.
Emmett Williams. Sense Sound 1955.
Song Dong. Stamping the water 1996.
Ai Weiwei. Dropping a Han Dynasty urn 1995.
Gosia Wlodarczak. Personal Space Southeast Walls: 78x4=312 2004.
Giuseppe Chiari. Eight opera graphics (portfolio) 1975.
Last Tuesday, 15th July 2014 I woke up with a dash of disappointment as I felt no warmth from the sun and instead came face to face with London's wet polka dot ground. The latest FaceBook messenger app (obtained by total defeat of the unwanted Install button) was called for at this moment. Immediately, my high school friends began discussing the awful weather and decided we would withstand such predicament and allow our tight high-school friendship bond reunite again after months of university engagements.
Meeting up at Sunnybank's Maccas, hugs, laughter and cheek-bone-hurting smiles were a must. Kicking off with three of us who were brave enough to travel under Vivienne's blossoming long-distance skills was an act on its own. (Thanks Viv for keeping us safe!) Once we arrived in Dreamworld's spacious parking slot, we were surrounded by sky-high, dangerous mechanical rollercoasters. My initial thought: why am I here again. Hmmm. Nevertheless we payed our ticket and walked inside with full excitement under the candy-pop colour stalls at the entrance. With Clare, Viv and Steph being the pioneers at this point, Anita and I were carried unknowingly to my first ride so far - The Claw. Unfortunately, the inertia was a little too terrifying for me and I had my eyes closed the whole time trying to breathe in the slightly more settling points of the ride. Not my favourite so far. The second one, Shockwave, was a star that got me catching it twice. Other activities at Dreamworld involved paying $5 to dry off after getting soaked by Thunder River Rapids Ride and Rocky Hollow Log Ride; feeling terribly lucky to have still been alive after experiencing Tower of Terror II falling too quickly at 100m in the sky and ending up further down the tunnel than expected; plus screaming with passion on Escape from Madagascar. In the end I've once again proved to myself that I'm a family and kids rides person. No thrill rides for me thank you.
After trying almost all the rides and having waited in line til patience's end, all five of us decided to go to Surfer's Paradise and have a nice, chill(ed indeed) walk. The day ended back at Sunnybank with Korean dinner. First time having spicy sauce chicken wings and now I understand why chicken takeaway is so popular in Korea. The taste and texture is definitely a good enough reason for the unhealthy indulgence.