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The city and the stage: musical theatre in Melbourne

Thursday 7 August 2014, 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Free
Cowen Gallery
Level 2a, Main entry, Swanston St
Has wheelchair access

Discover Melbourne’s love affair with musical theatre in a talk by Dr Peter Wyllie Johnston, Director of the Australian Centre for Music Theatre Research and Development at the University of Melbourne.

Original Australian musicals are a rich but unknown part of our culture. In the twentieth century more than 300 original musicals were produced in Australia and by 1930 Melbourne was the creative centre of the art form. Yet, the Australian musical, despite a sizeable number of successes during its first 100 years, continued to exist on the margins of the culture, rarely moving into the spotlight.

The question is why? The arrival of Victor Hugo’s manuscript of Les Miserables in Melbourne, to coincide with the revival of Boublil and Schönberg's stage musical, provides a perfect opportunity to ask questions about the extent to which Australians value aspects of their own culture, especially Australian musicals.

This talk is part of the Making Public Histories seminar series, exploring the making of history and heritage in contemporary society. Presented in partnership with the History Council of Victoria and Monash University Institute for Public History.