Bruce Glen’s Magical Soirées are best described as ‘storytelling magic shows for adults – but not necessarily grown-ups’.
They feature cutting-edge magic that seemingly defies the laws of physics – set amid intriguing stories guaranteed to leave you wondering.
He’s dazzled at sold-out Edinburgh International Magic Festival shows and at the London headquarters of The Magic Circle.
Venue: Cellos Grand Dining Room, Castlereagh Boutique Hotel, 169 Castlereagh St City Time: 6.30pm arrival for 7.00 pm start Dress Code: 1920s Guys in ties, Girls in pearls Single Tickets: $150.00 per person + booking fee Inclusive of sparkling wine “moonshine” and canapés on arrival, 3-course dinner, entertainment, GST and Members’ Discount.
Table of 8 Deal: $1100.00 + booking fee (save $100) You get 8 single tickets + 2 complimentary bottles of Silverleaf Sparkling Wine
WE’RE MAKING AN IMPACT – *We have chosen Humanitix as our ticketing partner, contributing to creating a positive impact on the world. Humanitix is making a difference by reinvesting 100% of profits back into helping the world’s most disadvantaged children.
The Rivoli Show is a music and dance spectacle created by the Dance Makers Collective. The Greg Poppleton Trio (Greg Poppleton 1920s vocals, Grahame Conlon guitar and banjo, Cazzbo Johns sousaphone) introduces the hour show. The Rivoli Show was a sold-out hit of the 2020 Sydney Festival.
It played at the beautifully restored Art Deco Malachi Gilmore Hall in Oberon on Saturday night 9 April and a Sunday matinee on 10 April. Here are some photos…
THE RIVOLI SHOW
A celebration of social life before social media, when to meet was to talk, laugh and move to music together.
The Rivoli is an immersive dance hall meets dance theatre performance, The Rivoli is a tribute to the iconic dance halls across Australia that were a celebration of social life before social media.
A hit at Sydney Festival 2020, this joyous production will celebrate the launch of the iconic Malachi Gilmore Hall in Oberon… after four decades of waiting for dancers to return to the dance floor.
The Rivoli features some of Australia’s best dancers and a stellar live band, The Greg Poppleton Trio. It is Dance Makers Collective’s most ambitious work yet, The Rivoli, an ode to a bygone dance era.
“a thoroughly entertaining and surprising work.”
“…energetic, lively and moving.” Callum McLean
DANCE MAKERS COLLECTIVE
DMC emerged in 2012 when a group of ten driven independent dance makers in Sydney gathered to take charge by working together to create new work in an environment where local opportunities to do so were slim. Over a few pizzas and some wine, each of us pitched ideas for short works to each other, and conceived of a program called Big Dance in Small Chunks – ten artists, ten works, ten minutes each. This informal get-together was where DMC was born.
After that meeting, we met with our now long-time partner and friend FORM Dance Projects in Parramatta and asked them to present our work in their 2013 program, which they took on with great enthusiasm. We asked our now long-time friends Legs On The Wall, Bangarra and Sydney Dance Company if we could use their rehearsal spaces to develop the work, successfully undertook a TRIP Residency at Tasdance, ran a crowdfunding campaign and approached a small arts charity Ars Musica Australis for some financial support. We applied for funding to (then) Arts NSW and secured enough funding to start developing the work, which came as a welcome shock to us as a brand new collective of artists, many of us in our first year of practice. We applied in two successive rounds to the Australia Council, unsuccessful both times, but we pushed on anyway and presented the program of works by rehearsing part-time to develop it, and underpaying ourselves.
When Big Dance in Small Chunks premiered in 2013 at Riverside Theatres, it was triumphant. The season was the most highly attended dance show in FORM’s program that year and was awarded Most Significant Dance Event of 2013 in Dance Australia Magazine’s annual critics’ awards. Jill Sykes wrote of the show in the Sydney Morning Herald at the time:
“The first showing by the Dance Makers Collective has imagination, thoughtfulness, individuality, performing ability and commitment. Even a sense of humour. It is a promising start by a group of independent artists in NSW, and worth catching in what will hopefully be a beginning rather than a one-off.”
And it was just the beginning.
Following the success of Big Dance in Small Chunks, DMC secured funding and mentorship support through the Australia Council’s (now defunct) JUMP Mentorship program. This enabled us to launch our second project WEBISODES, a series of short dance films created by each of the ten members, our first foray into dance on film which has been viewed by more than 10,000 people since being published online in 2014. In that same year, we supported three of the ten works presented in Big Dance in Small Chunks to be pushed further into longer works, curated in a Triple Bill again presented by FORM Dance Projects at Riverside Theatres, this time in 2015.
In these works, we started working more collaboratively together than we had before. Up until this point, we supported each other by working for one another as performers, providing feedback to each other, but essentially each of us were individual makers with ideas for works we wanted to make, to steer alone, but with some help from our peers. Our working methodology began to evolve from this relatively common way of making to a much richer, collaborative making process, which shifted even further in our next show.
DADS, which premiered in 2016, was a turning point for us and our most ambitious project to date. In DADS, DMC co-choreographed one full-length show, where each member shared equal responsibility for the show’s development. The show was also our first foray into community-engaged practice, where we took up residence at Dance Integrated Australia in the Northern Rivers region of NSW and worked with a local men’s group the Dustyesky Russian Men’s Choir, interviewing them about their dance experiences and recording their rehearsal in the pub in Mullumbimby, which formed the soundtrack for our opening sequence. We collaborated with our fathers, asking them for their advice about the show, they built our set, gave us dance moves, curated the show’s music and provided interview content that threaded together the narrative arc of the work; oh, and they danced with us in the show too!
DADS was shortlisted for the Australian Dance Award for Outstanding Achievement in Independent Dance in 2017.
After the success of DADS, and proven successes before that with our other three projects, DMC decided to take the next step and transition to a more independent company. Until this point, we relied heavily on our partners because DMC was an unincorporated entity, a group of individual artists with a name to work under, but no formal legal structure. We were, and still are, committed to a democratic model of working where members share not only in the creative process in the studio and on stage, but in the strategic direction of the company. To maintain autonomy over this as a group of artists, DMC formed a partnership of its now 9 members; this enabled us to apply for our own funding and manage our own projects without relying on other incorporated bodies.
As a partnership, DMC secured two successive rounds of strategic funding through Create NSW, a project grant through Create NSW, and a project and career development grant through the Australia Council. The strategic funding rounds we secured, Making Spaces and Emerging Organisations, enabled us to form new partnerships with local councils and Western Sydney based arts companies and local government arts centres including PYT Fairfield, Urban Theatre Projects, Blacktown Arts and Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre.
With this strategic funding DMC piloted new programs that launched in 2019, these were:
1. Mobilise (dancer training intensive);
2. Future Makers (youth dance company);
3. Thrive (schools incursions) and;
4. Dance On (dance classes for seniors)
At the same time, DMC seeded a range of new short works with our Making Spaces funding, which allowed us to work in community centres across Western Sydney by giving each member in DMC residency time of 4 weeks across an 18 month period from 2018-2019. Several of these seeded works have had presentation outcomes, these include:
1. Marnie and Melanie Palomares’ work The Space Between, a site-specific duet performed at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra as part of the BOLD Festival and at Articulate Project Space in Leichhardt as part of de Quincey co’s PLATFORM 2019;
2. Carl Sciberras’ work with collaborator’s Todd Fuller (visual/projection artist) and Mitchell Mollison (composer) Figure Out, a live drawing, live sound, live dance performance installation for children performed at the WOW Festival at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre;
3. Rosslyn Wythes’ Converge/\Diverge, a series of collaborative projects with ceramicist Holly Macdonald which have been presented in Brussels;
4. And Rosslyn Wythes’ Eco 1000, a site-specific solo about the Bathurst 1000 performed as part of ArtState 2018
Making Spaces also seeded a new duet between DMC members Katina Olsen (Wakka Wakka and Kombumerri woman) and Anya McKee called Women’s Business, which will undergo further and final development in 2020 for presentation in 2021.
Whilst piloting these programs, and developing and presenting these short works, DMC also developed The Rivoli, which was an even more ambitious community-engaged project than DADS which had a sold-out premiere season at Sydney Festival in January 2020. With funding from Create NSW, Cumberland Council, City of Parramatta, the Australia Council and Sydney Festival, this large-scale site-specific work brought together members of the local community, DMC’s new youth company Future Makers, a live swing band and 8 DMC performers at Granville Town Hall.
Given the breadth and scope of our program and projects, DMC became an incorporated association in 2019 and established a volunteer board consisting of members of the company and skilled professionals working outside DMC.
Once establishing ourselves as a company, DMC successfully secured for the first time Annual Program Funding through Create NSW. This funding enables us to continue our programs in 2020 as resident company at PYT Fairfield. The General Manager and Engagement Officer, DMC members Carl Sciberras and Melanie Palomares, work side-by-side with the remaining collective members to design and create opportunities for artists and the public to engage in rich dance experiences. This flat organisational structure enables us to lead together and adapt the program based on the emergence of ideas from within the company, and in response to opportunities that arise externally that align with our values, aims and objectives.
DMC is an exceptionally nimble creative enterprise that provides opportunities for artists in Sydney to create work together, and for a range of other demographic groups to engage in dance in various ways. We are a leader in our area of practice and exist as a beacon for others not only in dance, but in the arts more broadly, seeking to change the status-quo and embrace new ways of operating.
ABOUT THE MALACHI
The recently restored Art Deco Malachi Gilmore Memorial Hall occupies a prominent position in the main street of Oberon. Its asymmetrical façade is a striking Inter-war Art Deco addition to the streetscape of Oberon Street and the town generally.
On its opening in 1937, The Sydney Morning Herald wrote,
“The Malachi Gilmore Memorial Hall recently completed at Oberon has for its architectural basis the famous Pharos pylon of Alexandria. This historical pylon had a height of 460 feet. It was built by Sostratus of Cynidus. The architects of the Oberon Hall conceived the idea of making it a minor replica of the Pharos pylon. This design was accepted by the parish priest (Dr. A.J. Gummers) and the representatives of the late Malachi Gilmore, who was a native of Ireland. This was a startlingly bold design, but now that the hall has been completed it is a really beautiful building without being in the least incongruous. It is one of the architectural landmarks not merely of the town, but also of the whole district between the Blue Mountains and Lithgow. Tourists admire the bold outlines of the new building.
Many, ignorant of the antiquity of the design (the Pharos tower was supposed to have been erected 283BC, and was favourably commented on by Pliny and Strabo, ancient historians), regard it as ultra modern in conception. An old hall adjoining emphasises the bold outlines of the new building. A striking feature of the front of the new building is the use of glass bricks supplied by the Australian Glass Company, Sydney. The remainder of the building is stoutly built in brick and concrete. The hall measures 110 feet by 40 feet. It is used mainly for Roman Catholic social functions. . . Mr H. A. Taylor, Sydney, was the builder of the hall.”
The façade is rendered concrete with a complex massing of curving and rectangular shapes presenting a stepped skyline to the street. The emphasis is generally horizontal except for a central portion with a vertical pier rising to a height of nearly 14 metres. The metal-framed windows create a grid-like pattern and are stepped in size and proportion to match the stepped façade. Glass bricks form a large curved wall. The building’s name is rendered in stylized lettering on the façade.
The interior of the façade section of the building is largely intact and contains a foyer with fireplace, gallery, cloak rooms, bio-box and rewinding rooms at the front. In the main hall the walls are decorated with plasterwork, with some original Morene Art stucco work. The flooring of the foyer and main hall is West Australian jarrah hardwood. Under the main hall is another floor with slab concrete flooring supporting “supper rooms” and opening at ground level onto the large parking area at the rear of the property. The foyer is approximately 65 square metres (700 sq ft) and the hall has 279 square metres (3000 sq ft) of dancing space. Curiously, the hall was built in reverse of the architect’s plans.
Some major, although not structural changes were made during the 1980s, disconnecting the façade from the main hall section of the building. A stud wall now blocks the view that was formerly available from an upstairs viewing area onto the main hall (this vewing area has been converted in part to an office and in part left as open space). Similarly a stud wall blocks the view that was formerly available from the mezzanine level projection room into the main hall. At the time of renovation two new bathrooms were built in the façade section. A section of the stage in the main hall section was also cut out to make room for an elevator to convey goods from the rear parking area.
Thorne, Tod and Cork point out that one of the building’s eccentricities is that “the auditorium does not match the façade in any way. The former is a rather plain country hall with a stage, proscenium, stalls and small gallery” (1996, 302). According to Scott Robinson of the NSW Art Deco Society, “The Malachi Gilmore Hall is a most unusual combination of a diminiative (sic) Modern “picture palace” front (with its vertical fin and roof) and Modern Movement rectiliniarity of the stepped massing of the building behind the front” (quoted in the Heritage Inventory nomination form submitted by the Friends of the Malachi Gilmore Hall, 2001). Ross Thorne’s 1983 “Theatres/Cinemas in NSW” states that the exterior of the hall is “unique in a kind of west-coast USA 1930s design style with a vague Frank Lloyd Wright influence produced by the feeling of horizontality (in parts). It also has a very strong vertical element at the front, and glass bricks in the manner of Depression Modern”. Thorne, Tod and Cork’s “Movie Theatre Heritage Register” states, “there is nothing quite like it elsewhere in New South Wales. Even by today’s standards, the building is unusual and futuristic” (1996, 302).
The architectural significance of the hall has been widely recognised and is reflected in the large number of heritage listings: Oberon Shire Council LEP, RAIA Register of Twentieth Century Buildings, the Register of the National Trust of Australia (NSW), the Register of the Art Deco Society, and Ross Thorne’s Movie Theatre Heritage Register.
Zelda, Magazine of the Vintage Nouveau, is a glossy annual published by the multi-talented US actor, cinematographer and stills photographer, Don Spiro.
If you’re a fan of what matters in Nouveau Vintage in the USA, then this magazine is for you. Even the ads for newly tailored vintage suits and cravats are a great resource for those of us worldwide who look sharp.
In this, the latest 2022 edition, the Zelda annual invites you to “enjoy a vintage cocktail, and listen to some old jazz while you page through the articles in this issue…”
WHAT’S IN THIS YEAR’S ZELDA
“We start with researcher and historian Garret Richard’s take on Trader Vic’s tropical tequila classic cocktail, El Diablo, followed by Eff’s Style Emporium’s review of the allure of that vintage summer fabric, Palm Beach Cloth.
We have interviews with Jazz-Age-style singer Greg Poppleton and New York burlesque star Dandy Dillinger.
We’ll catch up on the undertakings of Philadelphia bandleader, Drew Nugent and we’ll learn about the history of the Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum.”
“We’ll learn from Queen Esther how influential accomplishments people of color have gone unacknowledged, and Mr. Burton will enlighten us about appreciating vintage style without vintage values.
We’ll introduce you to the sites of jazz age arts and culture in Atlanta, Georgia, and our Recipe Box feature about the U. S. Department Of Agriculture’s Circular 109 from 1918, “Cottage Cheese Dishes,” appropriately shows how to enjoy tasty recipes in hard times, and with social activities returning, we are thrilled to showcase various Jazz Age and Prohibition-era events that our readers have attended in On The Town.”
It’s an honour to be published in this year’s Zelda.
What are you doing this Saturday? We’ll be having fun with songs from the 1920s-30s at Penrith RSL. It’s free and you’re invited. 2-5pm, this Saturday 11 December. First 5,000 at door get in FREE.
Free car parking
10 min walk from Penrith Station
Just 10 minutes walk from Penrith train station and bus interchange.
With me as I sing the songs of the 1920s and 1930s are, Dave Clayton on double bass.
Guitarist for Ricky May, Grahame Conlon, swings on Spanish guitar and banjo.
Damon Poppleton, will be joining us on alto saxophone.
Penrith is a suburb in New South Wales, Australia, located west of Sydney. It is located in Greater Western Sydney, 50 kilometres (31 mi) west of the Sydney central business district on the banks of the Nepean River, on the outskirts of the Cumberland Plain.
Penrith is the administrative centre of the local government area of the City of Penrith. It is also acknowledged on the register of the Geographical Names Board of New South Wales as one of only four cities within the Greater Sydney metropolitan area.
Penrith has a number of heritage-listed sites, including:
34-40 Borec Road: Craithes House 26 Coombes Drive: Torin Building Great Western railway: Penrith railway station, Sydney Nepean River, Great Western Highway: Victoria Bridge Off Bruce Neale Dr, Steel Trusses 1.3 km past station: Emu Plains Underbridge 1 Museum Drive: Penrith Museum of Fire, including the following: Fire and Rescue NSW Heritage Fleet NSW Fire Brigades No 10 Vehicle Number Plates 1869 Shand Mason 7 inch Manual Fire Engine 1891 Shand Mason Fire Engine 1898 Shand Mason Curricle Ladders 1909 Edward Smith Headquarters Switchboard 1929 Ahrens Fox PS2 Fire Engine 1939 Dennis Big 6 Fire Engine 1942 Ford 21W Fire Brigade Mobile Canteen
You are cordially invited to a very special evening of magic and music – or as we like to call it: Sorcery & Swing.
For one night only the original, ornate 1920s vintage Cellos Grand Dining Room in the historic 1920s Castlereagh Boutique Hotel will be transformed into the Sydney Solstice Speakeasy for Sorcery and Swing.
Come dressed to the nines in your finest Roaring Twenties fashion (girls in pearls, guys in ties). There’s even a small dance floor to swing, Charleston and balboa to.
You will be greeted with close-up magic, champagne & canapés before being seated for a delicious three-course dinner.
My quartet and I will serenade you with 1920s music for dining and dancing throughout the evening. On sousaphone and trumpet will be Geoff Power, guitar and banjo Grahame Conlon and Damon Poppleton will play alto and soprano saxophone. My friend, Bruce Glen will be making the magic.
Bruce is known as The Gentleman Magician, “Charming and with impeccable manners…you’re almost unaware of the stunts he’s pulling off in front of you until they’ve actually happened,” Edinburgh International Magic Festival.
WHEN: 7:00PM Saturday 12th June
WHERE: The Castlereagh Boutique Hotel, 169 Castlereagh Street, Sydney
TICKETS: $125 includes welcome champagne and canapés, three course dinner, all entertainment. Cash bar available (but shhhh….this is the Prohibition Era).
Deco Park Picnic, Valentines’ Day, Sunday 14 February 2021: the 1920s Greg Poppleton Trio with Paul Baker on banjo, Adam Barnard on washboard (and myself singing), serenaded revellers with songs of the 1920s.
Great Art Deco Ball 2020.Greg Poppleton’s and his 1920s-30s music has been playing the Great Art Deco Ball at Katoomba’s Carrington Hotel since 2012. It’s the highlight of the annual Blue Mountains 1920s Festival.
In that time, the Ball has grown in audience size so that the Grand Dining Room now is always full. Tickets sell out months in advance. That’s despite the fact that the only way to get a ticket is to be in the know and ring hotel reception.
The Ball has grown in large part because, as Australia’s only authentic 1920s-30s singer, people who book tickets to enjoy a 1920s experience at the Ball get exactly that.
In 2019, the Carrington decided to book another band. There were so many complaints we were called back. It’s very humbling to receive such strong support from Great Art Deco Ball fans. So in 2020 the dance floor was full most of the night, the band gave two encores, and many happy guests continued enjoying the atmosphere in the Grand Dining Room one hour after the show had concluded.
It’s a lesson that if you want a successful 1920s-30s themed event, you book a 1920s-30s band. Jazz bands, DJs, covers band that do a bit of ‘jazz dinner music and then rock music for dancing’ are not appropriate for a 1920s, 30s, Gatsby event.
I’ve played large 1920s themed events where other jazz bands and big bands, rock bands and DJs have played in other sections of the party. Either guests ask ‘why are they here?’ or they simply get angry. We get re-booked.
During the dinner, it was my solemn duty to break the news that Bob Hawke, Australia’s 23rd Prime Minister, had died. There is film of this moment below…
ALGWA is the national Australian Local Government Women’s Association. With branches in every state and territory it seeks to strengthen networking, mentoring and innovative opportunities that encourage and support women in local government.
BREAKING THE NEWS BOB HAWKE HAD DIED
When news came through during the evening that one of Australia’s most popular political leaders had died, I was asked to break the news to the conference delegates.
Thank you to Cazzbo Johns, who put down her sousaphone to film the moment I broke that sad news news mid band set at the ALGWA Conference Dinner…
<h4>1920s SINGER AND BAND</h4>
The Greg Poppleton band for the Conference Dinner included:
– Greg Poppleton: Australia’s only authentic 1920s – 1930s singer singing into a 1920s suspension microphone and 1920s megaphone
– Paul Furniss: clarinet and alto saxophone
– Cazzbo (Carolyn) Johns: sousaphone
– Grahame Conlon: guitar and banjo
<h4>SOUND AND LIGHTS</h4>
were provided for the long arc shaped room by Tony Jex at OzManagement. As Tony is the booker for the Greg Poppleton band, the ALGWA Conference had lights, sound and operation at a discount.
<h4>WHY BOOKING A REAL 1920s BAND FOR A 1920s THEME MAKES REAL DOLLARS AND SENSE</h4>
So many bands play songs from the 1920s.
The Greg Poppleton band is 1920s. That’s because Greg sings the music of the 1920s and 1930s exclusively.
The difference is sound.
Bands and DJs that play 1920s, 1930s, rock, blues, Sinatra, comb, spoons, gypsy, Buble and what ever else is supposed ‘to get people dancing’ try really hard to hide the fact they can’t make the right 1920s – 30s sounds.
It’s that simple.
Like, the family wagon is a car but racers aren’t going to use it to try and win a grand prix, are they?
Booking the family wagon instead of the specialist twenties singer and band ruins any 1920s -30s atmosphere you’ve spent money, time and reputation on creating.
And here’s Cazzbo with Grahame Conlon on guitar doubling banjo in the Greg Poppleton band at the ALGWA dinner. Tony Jex is in the back ground at the sound desk.
On sax and clarinet with the Greg Poppleton band is one of Australia’s most celebrated jazz figures, Paul Furniss…
It’s as hot as one of Gatsby’s parties, it’s The Gin Mill Social! The fun never stops as live swing musicians play all night long and vaudeville performers pop up to entertain when you least expect it.
“A night of glamour, food, drinks and entertainment…. Don’t forget your dancing shoes.” – Broadsheet
The first of those swing bands is singer Greg Poppleton’s real 1920s trio with Geoff Power on cornet doubling sousaphone and Paul Baker, banjo. Read, see, book the Band.