If you could make the soundtrack to your life, a mixtape, what songs would you choose? Almost a Mirror is an edgy mash up of live music and storytelling, based on Kirsten Krauth’s popular and critically acclaimed novel and podcast series of the same name. The premiere of this new show will be at Tathra Hotel on 20 and 21 May, presented by Headland Writers Festival and South East Arts.
Press play on Side A and take a journey through music from the late 70s-80s — where the post-punk world of St. Kilda’s Crystal Ballroom collides with the pop icons of Countdown.
Join Kirsten and a fantastic line up of musicians on this deep-dive into the iconic songs of the era – Wide Open Road, (I’m) Stranded, Alone With You, Shivers, a dash of Duran Duran and The Cramps – from the elegantly wasted to the neon lights.
The show is a collaboration with some of Australia’s top musicians including singer Angie Hart (Frente), singer-songwriter Michael Simic (Mikelangelo), vocalist/composer/performer Inga Liljestrom, singer-songwriter Heath Cullen, and singer and multi-instrumentalist Michael Mooney (Canada’s Le Trouble).
“The combination of words, performance and live music was part of the first Headland Writers Festival in 2021, with South Coast band The Novellas and actor Patrick Dickson,” explained Andrew Gray, Executive Director of South East Arts.
“Almost A Mirror takes this style of show to a new level with Kirsten’s words interwoven with unique versions of well-known songs. We are excited to feature such a strong line up of regionally-based musicians from NSW and Victoria,” said Mr Gray.
Kirsten’s writing hauntingly evokes the power of music to infuse our lives, while diving deep into loss, beauty, innocence and agency. Almost a Mirror reflects on the healing power of creativity and the everyday sacredness of family and friendship in the face of unexpected tragedy. Like fireflies to the light, characters Mona, Benny and Jimmy are drawn into the orbit of the Crystal Ballroom and the post-punk scene of 80s Melbourne, a world that includes Nick Cave and Dodge, a photographer pushing his art to the edge.
Almost a Mirror was shortlisted for the 2021 SPN Book of the Year Award and the Penguin Literary Prize, and was named in The Guardian’s ‘20 Best Australian Books of 2020’. The podcast series, available now on Apple Podcasts, revolves around Australian songs and includes interviews with the late Chris Bailey, Ed Kuepper, Tex Perkins, Mick Harvey and The Triffids.
The musical directors for the show are Zoe Barry and Inga Liljestrom who have a wealth of experience in performance and creative collaboration. Zoe was the 2021 winner of the Telstra ARIA Music Teacher Award and Inga is an experimental vocalist and composer whose music has been described as sonic landscapes – fusing elements of jazz, electronica, film noir, folk and rock.
Almost A Mirror is part of the extended programming of Headland Writers Festival, with events throughout the year in the lead-up to the main festival at Tathra in late October. The show is supported by funding from the Regional Arts Fund, through Regional Arts NSW.
Bookings are essential and ticketing is open now at www.headlandfestival.com.au