Sunday, March 15, 2009

Opera House and More

This weekend got off to a great start with a trip to Coogee Beach. Since Becky and I do not have Friday classes, we figured we should use the opportunity to spend some quality time with the sun and sand. Unfortunately, the weather worsened as the day went on, but we had a couple hours of beach time before the rain came.

Yesterday our study abroad group took a tour of the Opera House and attended a play called "Floating". The tour was about an hour long and provided lots of great information about the building. Contrary to popular belief, opera is not the only genre performed at the Opera House. It is a performing arts center which means the types of performances range from ballet to chamber music to comedy. The theaters inside are similar to other modern performance venues around the world. Although they lack the architectural grandeur of the outside of the building, they provide a wonderful venue for any type of performance. The play we attended, "Floating", was in one of the smaller theaters, seating only about 400 people. It was a British play that forced the audience to think about what "theater" really is. The entire first half of the play was based on audience participation and a rapport between the actors and the audience. There was not a story until the second half, and even then it was not a story in the traditional sense. It included the use of many types of media and effects not often seen on stage such as a slide show, objects being passed around the audience, a projector, a bowl of water, and maps among other things. Although it was not at all what I was expecting, I really enjoyed the show. It's nice to be forced to think about things that are often taken for granted and come away with a deeper understanding of one's perceptions.

Today was another eventful day. First, we went to the St. Patrick's parade downtown. There were bagpipers, floats, and even a tractor (which made me feel like I was back in Transfer!). Afterward, we went to a picnic in the botanical gardens with member from SUMS, the choir I joined. It was a beautiful day to relax and visit. Finally, we went to the Southern Pylon of the Harbour Bridge, which includes a museum and a lookout tower. The views were incredible!

Here is the link to some of the pictures I took this weekend:

Next weekend...Melbourne!

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