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A night at the opera: art comes alive in a modern twist on Rossini’s Il Viaggio a Reims

In 1864, four years before his death, Italian composer Gioachino Rossini recalled to his biographer Alexis Azevedo that he would probably have ended up a “chemist or an olive oil salesman” had it not been for the French invasion of Italy. Peter Tregear The Conversation That invasion had begun in 1792, the year of Rossini’s birth. By 1797, Napoleon Bonaparte had established the short-lived Cisalpine Republic in Northern Italy, in turn raising hopes a unified Italian state might soon emerge. ... Read More »

Review: Patricia Cornelius’ Love reprises in double bill

THEATRE LOVE ★★★★ Patricia Cornelius, fortyfivedownstairs, until June 9 Patricia Cornelius’ award-winning play Love is currently reprising in a double bill – together with her play Shit – at fortyfivedownstairs, before heading to the Venice Biennale in July. Cameron Woodhead The Sydney Morning Herald It has been a stand-out year for Cornelius, who back in March won the lucrative Windham-Campbell Prize for Drama in the US, and it’s pleasing to see this most decorated of Australian playwrights finally attracting the… There’s something savage and protean ... Read More »

Voice will end cycle of instability

The process that led to the Uluru Statement From the Heart and the proposal to amend the Australian constitution to enshrine a First Nations Voice to Parliament was a watershed moment in Australian history. Megan Davis The Sydney Morning Herald For the first time in our living memory, a representative group of Australia’s First Nations people met in the heart of Australia at Uluru on May 26, 2017, and agreed to endorse a sequence of reforms aimed at doing what ... Read More »

Are milkshakes the new politics of resistance?

‘The flinging of milkshakes represents a frustration with traditional media’s failure to hold the far right to account’ Stewart Lee The Guardian Wouldn’t it be wonderful to hear what would be said at our own funeral? When Michael Gove attends next month’s An Evening With Michael Gove, at Westminster’s Emmanuel Centre, the… An enterprising promoter should reboot the night as Michael Gove – This Is Your Life, the vengeful foundling wearing a little girl’s party dress, and crying hot tears ... Read More »

Jews are at risk in Germany, says Jewish Council

Germany’s central Jewish council has weighed in on the anti-Semitism debate, saying the security situation for Jews has “deteriorated” in major cities. Israeli President Rivlin has expressed concern over the situation. Deutsche Welle Josef Schuster, the head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, told the Welt am Sonntagnewspaper that the security situation for Jews in the country has worsened in the past few years. “On the whole I don’t tend to dramatize, but the situation has by and large ... Read More »

Destitute children unlawfully denied support by local councils

Campaigners say policy affecting hundreds of families stems from excessive focus on parents’ immigration status ‘Mummy, are we poor?’: the destitute children denied help by councils Local councils are unlawfully denying destitute children support because their parents’ immigration status is under suspicion, the Guardian can reveal. Aamna Mohdin The Guardian Families whose immigration status becomes insecure can quickly become destitute because they lose their right to work and access benefits. Such families who have dependent children can seek support under ... Read More »

The United States is forcing Turkey to decide its loyalties – analysis

The United States would no longer tolerate Turkey playing a double game between Moscow and Washington and force the latter to decide its loyalties, writer James Gorrie said in the Epoch Times. Tiny Url Ahval “Turkey engages in a delicate and dangerous ballet on the fence which divides its allegiances to NATO and the West on one side, and Russia and militant Islamism on the other. Turkey wants it both ways, but their dance is fooling no one. Trump won’t ... Read More »

UN: Russia must free Ukraine ships, crew

A United Nations maritime tribunal has ruled that Russia must immediately release three Ukrainian naval vessels captured in November, and the 24 sailors it detained. Geir Moulson Australian Associated Press The Canberra Times The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea issued its order at its Hamburg headquarters following a hearing earlier this month. Russian representatives did not attend. The confrontation in the Kerch Strait, which links the Sea of Azov with the Black Sea, marked a flashpoint in ... Read More »

Sorry Day is about empathy

OPINION: On this National Day of Healing, let’s recognise that starting point of ‘sorry’. Empathy is a virtue vital for Australians to reach reconciliation, writes Luke Briscoe. By Luke Briscoe Source:NITV News SBS Unless you were a complete angel as a child, all of us have memories of being told to apologise to someone at some point. But sometimes, saying ‘sorry’ just wasn’t enough. I realised this one day when I looked a schoolmate straight in the eye, internalising how he ... Read More »

Coast Guard wages battle against illegal fishing boats

Out at sea, this border battle is fought in boats HARLINGEN — In the sun-blasted, wind-riven waters between the South Padre Island jetties and the mouth of the Rio Grande, a different kind of border crossing crisis is playing out. Rick Kelley Valley Morning Star Source: U.S. Coast Guard One side has spotter aircraft, radar and fully crewed patrol craft loaded with the latest technology. The other employs simple 20- to 30-foot boats with outboard motors, capitalizing on speed and ... Read More »

Assange’s new indictment: Espionage and the First Amendment

Julian Assange, the co-founder of WikiLeaks, has been charged by the U.S. Department of Justice with a slew of Espionage Act violations that could keep him in prison for… Ofer Raban The Conversation The new indictment expands an earlier one charging Assange with conspiring with Chelsea Manning, the former soldier convicted of leaking classified documents to… Assange is responsible for the dissemination of troves of classified American documents, including hundreds of thousands of military reports, hundreds of thousands of diplomatic ... Read More »

‘This is about men’s behaviour’, says top police officer after another woman’s murder

One of Victoria’s most senior police has urged men to take responsibility for violence against women after what appears to be the fourth killing of a lone woman in public in Melbourne in less than a year. Michael Fowler The Age Speaking hours after the discovery of a woman’s body in Royal Park on Saturday, Assistant Commissioner Luke Cornelius was at pains to tell the public that Melbourne remained a very safe place. “Melbourne remains one of the safest cities ... Read More »

Logging ravaging the Solomon Islands’ forests

The Solomon Islands is the biggest exporter, after Papua New Guinea, of round logs to China, where they are processed and sold as tropical hardwood products around the world. By Louise Hunt, Honiara Asia Times To sate this demand, logging companies are clearing Solomon Islands forests at nearly 20 times the sustainable rate, according to an investigation by watchdog NGO Global Witness, published last October. The Solomon Islands’ Ministry of Finance has also suggested its commercially viable natural forest will be exhausted ... Read More »

‘Unrelentingly partisan’: Did the Murdoch press sway the election?

The day after the election, a fuming Kevin Rudd took to Twitter. “In all the election commentary last night, not a single word on the elephant in the room,” the former prime minister wrote. Bianca Hall The Sydney Morning Herald “Murdoch, with 70 per cent control of Australia’s print media, ran the single most biased campaign in Australian political history. Reason for the silence? People are in fear of Murdoch’s power.” Rupert Murdoch’s papers, which actually account for about 60 per ... Read More »