Whiteley

Whiteley

Artist. Rebel. Icon.
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About the event

He burst onto the international art scene, all golden curls and bravado. He was dynamic, damaged, a big idea and a bold brush. With the vivacious Wendy on his arm, Brett Whiteley was magnetic. He abhorred straight lines, adored drugs, alcohol and women. He worked in vivid colour and ravishing curves. Heroin was both muse and merciless master. Out of this tumultuous life spilled a messy array of brilliant artworks and astonishing self-reflection.

In 2019, this Australian icon meets two of Australia’s greatest artists in a brand new work for the Australian stage: Whiteley, by Elena Kats-Chernin and Justin Fleming. Kats-Chernin is peerless among contemporary composers, celebrated for her enormous output and music that bursts with colour, life and tenderness. Fleming is a respected playwright and librettist whose work is renowned for its warmth, wit and poignancy.

Together they’ve created an opera to honour the life and work of a man who could not extricate his talent from his demons. Production designer Dan Potra’s technology-driven set is an immersive world created from Whiteley’s most famous paintings. Experience the works of a modern master on moving, larger-than-life screens.

"Even if you don't know (Elena Kats-Chernin's) name, you're bound to have heard her music, whether on the radio, online, at the Olympics or in the Sydney Opera House"

THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD