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myself and our daughter Hannah (Kit) were lucky enough to attend the first performance of “Grimm and the Blue Crown Owl”, treatment
a new opera by Joshua McHugh. This was a sold-out performance at the Street Theatre ANU on Saturday 19th September 2009. It was a wonderful performance. Joshua and the rest of the cast, ailment
drawn from the Vocal students of the ANU School of Music should be congratulated for their amazing performances.
“Joshua McHugh is a pianist, composer, singer and music teacher,
currently undertaking his third year majoring as a classical voice student at the ANU School of Music. His portfolio of works include three publications, various chamber works, the score for a film titled No Junk Mail and a song cycle; the latter having premiered mid last year at Wesley Music Centre. His first opera is inspired by the voices of fellow students and their vocal capacity and shape the artistic cast of Grimm and the Blue Crown Owl.
As the story unfolds, a band of Mad Scientist Rats plots to take over the world, a young hero is torn between the love he feels for a beautiful girl, and the jealous notions that are steering him towards the dark side of his nature. Keefer, the last owl of his kind, becoming embroiled in both of these stories, finds redemption from his vengeful past when he realizes that the only darkness we need to conquer is the one that lives within us.
Twenty-seven performers take to the stage in Grimm and the Blue Crown Owl in 41 characters that cross between humans and intelligent creatures in a love story set in a dark city in the underworld. Ben Connor, acclaimed for his performance at The Street Theatre in Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, plays the leading role of Grimm. His love interest, Abigail d’Espairs, is performed by Karen Fitz-Gibbon, last seen in the role of Pamina in The Magic Flute. Recently returned from a tour to Germany with Adelaide based Co-Opera, Sonia Anfilloff plays the role of Sly, one the Mad Scientist Rats who is half human/half creature.
PJ Williams, Imogen Keen and Nick Merrylees bring their collective years of theatrical experience coupled with fresh ideas to direct, design and light the performance.” (from ANU School of Music website)