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Back October 21st, 2007 Forward
A New Concert Space in Fremantle

Over the past two nights, I've been attending concerts for the first time in ages.  I found out about these concerts through being on the BOCS ticketing email newsletter (I hardly ever read the silly thing, but I receive it anyway), and they looked interesting, so I bought tickets for them.  Friday night's concert was Bernard Carney and Kavisha Mazella; last night's comprised Bluegrass Fever, the Wise Family Band, and a reunion of Bungarra.  Now, to most of you, these names mean positively nothing, so I'll just say that I'd seen Bernard Carney, the Wise Family Band, and Kavisha Mazella at various iterations of the National Folk Festival while I was living in Canbrrra.   Yes, they're folkies. 

The concert was held at a theatre space I hadn't heard of previously - the Port Cinema Concert Theatre.  Turns out there was a reason for that: it was a brand new venue - Friday night was the opening concert.  As the name suggests, the place used to be a cinema, but it hadn't been used for this purpose since about 1998.  The building is scheduled for demolition by the council, although this tends to happen with anything which isn't actually heritage listed in Freo as a matter of course.  Generally, if the community wants it kept up, they make a noise and things happen.  That's the aim of the promoters with this venue.  I figure it's a good thing to see - after all, when the cinema first came along, theatres and concert venues were turned into picture palaces - it seems only fair the reverse should happen now and then.

Strangely enough, the place turns out to be a very good venue for live music, acoustically.  It's a small space, seating maybe 200 people, but it's a quiet space.  In a city where most of the live music scene is in one pub or another, and you're fighting for earspace over the noise of conversation (and your conversation is inevitably fighting for earspace over the noise of whichever over-amplified band they have performing this week) this is a rare thing.  If you want to just listen to the music, it's not the most optimal environment, and if you're a muso who wants your music heard, it's probably even less so.  It's an older theatre, which means the seats are actually wide enough to accommodate the average backside, and comfortable to boot (having been built in the age prior to the notion that the key to success is to pack 'em in tight, and charge like a wounded bull).  There's a very comfortable foyer, and the place is right next door to Princess May Park. 

I've put my name down for the email list for information about whichever concerts are going to be next.  Can't wait.

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