POPSART: My two top picks at Brisbane Festival – Laser Beak Man and Orpheus

Brisbane, you are killing me this time of year! Last week I had BIGSOUND and interviews with artists, I moderated two panels for Brisbane Writers Festival, I launched Access Arts brilliant festival Undercover Artist Festival and then the  Brisbane Festival kicked off as well!

My pick of the Brisbane festival so far is Laser Beak Man presented by La boite Theatre and the Dead Puppets Society. In a cynical age when everyone bemoans it’s all been done before and there are no original ideas this show smashes through that notion with a blue caped crusader who doesn’t speak and shoots laser from his nose.

I attended the Opening night and captured the jubilant responses from the audience post show.

As you can here from the enthusiastic response from the audience its like something people have literally never experienced. Its puppets animated by some of the best performers in the world, it’s a rock concert with Ball Park Music in the theatre playing the most rocking songs written by Sam Cormack, there’s animation on multiple LED screens and of course the whole concept came from Tim Sharp who is an artist with autism who created Laser Beak Man. Tim and his mum Judy who is an integral part of the process have spent the last four years collaborating with the Dead Puppets Society and Sam Cromack to bring this incredible show to fruition.

Nick Paine and David Morton are Dead Puppet Society – Queensland’s premiere visual theatre and design company based between Brisbane and New York City having had a very influential two year residency at The New Victory Theatre in New York City 2014-2016. Previous works include The Wider Earth, a co-production with Queensland Theatre, The Harbinger at La Boite, The Timely Death of Victory Blott at Metro Arts and Little Grey Wolf at Brisbane Festival’s Under the Radar in 2009

With Laser Beak Man they have created a new form of theatrical story telling whose voice has great wit and absurd humour, amazing visuals, Cromack’s driving, poetic, thumping underscore and endless surprises. I’m not one to condone drug use but if you were partial to the weed this will blow your mind!



I also popped along to the opening of Orpheus at the Tivoli and it was such a bewitching magical show – set in a Paris music hall in the 1930s so of course the Tivoli is perfect – think black lace, champagne and torch songs. It’s a whole experience, audience members are encouraged to dress up there is French food and audience members really got into the swing of things. I was sitting up in the balconies, which are very romantic, and the couple next to me started pashing!!!

The show itself is like watching a silent movie using song, music and highly stylized gesture, dance and humour to tell the story, which is great entertainment. However the second half when Orpheus descends into Hades to rescue Euripides took on dark threatening tones and true grief, the climax was extremely moving the players whipped up into a frenzy almost shamanistic like in his energy and effect that left the audience literally gasping.

After the show I met with the cast members Alexander Scott and Dominic Conway in the green room to talk about their experience.




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