Australia, culture, performing arts, theatre, music, circus, film, radio,
With a roar of laughter 1789-1850
Traces the beginnings of Australian theatre and cultural life, following the
arrival of the first fleet, through the entrepreneurial endeavours of Robert
Sidaway and Barnett Levey, Signor Dalle Casse, John Phillip Deane and George
Hughes, who played separate roles in establishing theatre, circus, musical
and publishing businesses. Describes the characteristics of the infant
theatre industry and the Theatre Royal, Sydney and tracks the opening of
theatres in Hobart, Melbourne and Adelaide.
The Crown of Wattle 1851-1900
With the dramatic increase in population, sophistication and wealth, George
Coppin, J.C. Williamson, George Darrel, Alfred Dampier, Bland Holt and
others make their mark in Australian theatre. The Ashton, St Leon and Wirth
families present theatre in the cities and country towns. W.S. Lyster
becomes the central figure in what was described as the golden age of
Australian opera. J.F.Archibald and George Robertson play notable parts in
publishing and bookselling with The Bulletin and Angus & Robertson.
Strike Me Lucky! 1901-1950
Federation in 1901 arrived at a time of geographical, social and economic
tensions. Vaudeville and revues were the most forms of entertainment in the
first decades of the new century, with Harry Rickards as the dominant force.
Film, radio and sound recordings ushered in new forms of competition, new
forms of opportunity, new audiences. The Australian Broadcasting Commission
became a major force in the development of Australian drama, music and
opera. Arthur Rowlandson at the New South Wales Bookstall Company, conceived
the idea of producing paperback editions of Australian novels, beginning
with a Steel Rudd story, Sandy’s Selection.
A fourth section, The Coming of the White
Elephants, will be added to the paper in the near future