|The Dome Show|
The Dome Show, an illustrated
concert performed beneath the unique architecture of the old post office
dome in Hamilton, was breathtaking. I featured as the lighting technician.
The Dome Show, conceived and performed by The Awkward Smorgasbord Orchestra,
composer and music director Justine Francis.
Where: The Dome, old central post office, Victoria St, Hamilton.
When: Until May 22.
Reviewed by: Hilary Falconer.
There are a lot of things that make a city. A city needs hotel, restaurants, casinos, theatre, lots of things.
It needs creativity and it needs eccentricity. Hamilton is gradually getting there and brave projects like this help.
The creative people behind the Dome Show contacted the future developers of the old central post office site and organised a theatrical event to use the space before it is transformed _ a celebratory event instead of the more usual whining about the demise of a familiar landmark.
The developers, equally bravely and commendably, came to the party in the form of sponsorship. (The role of commerce in funding the arts is another necessary facet of fully fledged citydom that Hamilton is only just coming to terms with.)
The Dome Show is a conceptual piece. A huge alien egg sits under the sci-fi dome of the old central post office, its bubble-wrap construction echoing the circles in the ceiling.
The conductor circles the egg, wary at first, but wanting to take control.
The mad professor conductor (Peter Caldwell) is fairly manic, but not as malevolent as what emerges from the egg.
Assorted conventional instruments, a couple of less conventional ones and voices carry the drama of the piece, percussive and simple in structure but evocative and organic.
It's a short but well-constructed and delightfully executed piece of creative and completely original musical theatre.
The politics of its inception is almost as important as the production. But the product is also very beautiful. What more could you ask of art?