Sweeping poetry, musical melodrama, and unique Australian landscapes meet for a world-first of its kind, a reimagined version of the Strauss/Tennyson epic ‘Enoch Arden’
Charting a perilous journey through rough seas, shipwreck, and heartache, Richard Strauss’ epic melodrama collides with the sweeping poetry of Alfred Tennyson to tell the story of Enoch Arden, a lost sailor trying to navigate his way home.
Co-presented by Brisbane Music Festival and Victorian Theatre Company, Enoch Arden will premiere on 28 March 2021, in digital format for only two performances.
Matthew Connell (Blake Mysteries, Ms Fisher’s Modern Murder Mysteries) narrates Tennyson’s evocative text with Alex Raineri (one of Australia’s leading pianists and Artistic Director of the Brisbane Music Festival) at the piano. An original visual composition of Australian landscapes accompanies the duo, adding another artistic dimension to the rendition.
The visual composition, created by filmmaker Jak Scanlon, fuses British poetry and German musical Romanticism with images of the Australian outback landscape. This global combination celebrates multiculturalism and mixes contemporary with classical.
Enoch Arden was captured long-distance in both Melbourne and Brisbane with the creative team rehearsing, filming, and performing in real-time, via modern technology.
Brisbane Music Festival Artistic Director Alex Raineri said he was inspired to present a fresh perspective of Enoch Arden within the Brisbane Music Festival 2021 program.
“At Brisbane Music Festival, we seek to creatively push the limits and experiment with new ways of storytelling,” Mr Raineri said.
“In this new rendition of Enoch Arden, we’ve taken advantage of the digital space and played to the strengths of an online performance.
Our collaboration with the Victorian Theatre Company, has shown location doesn’t need to be a barrier when it comes to creating and performing in today’s strange world, Mr Raineri said.
Victorian Theatre Company Director Matthew Connell said the production strives to highlight the importance of connection.
Enoch Arden is a story about separation and seeking connection. This is something everyone can relate to, after experiencing the heartache from being separated from our families, due to the COVID-19 lockdowns last year, Mr Connell said.
Enoch Arden promises to be a deeply moving piece of interdisciplinary art appealing to music lovers, theatergoers, film buffs, and those seeking a transcendental journey into a world of sailors, shipwrecks, grief, love, and human connection.
Date: 28 March 2021
Time: 10am and 7pm AEST (11am and 8pm AEDT)
Matthew Connell Narrator
Alex Raineri Piano
Jak Scanlon Video Composition
Thomas Kunz Sound Technician
Chelsea Neate Graphic Design
Samara Barr Producer
Kurtis Lowden Editor