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by Tony Roma
posted 28/01/2020

Review: Iron In The Blood

Iron In The Blood at City Recital Hall 23rd January 2020

Reviewed by PJ from Dial Afrika

“Iron In the Blood” could be regarded as the most revealing portrayal of Britains brutal treatment of their own kind and of the indigenous Aboriginal inhabitants of Australia, in the late eighteenth and into the nineteenth century, recently staged at the City Recital Hall.

Very well attended by a predominantly well heeled, senior white audience, including an ex prime minister who was apparently instrumental in the facilitation of this work. I would have been one of the very few persons of colour. Mind you, I was expecting a much larger black audience. After all said and done…….!!!!!

This musical production was inspired by Robert Hughes’ famous book, “The Fatal Shore”, brilliantly presented from three points of view, principally by Jeremy Rose’s musical production and his 17 piece Earshift Orchestra, visual projections and documented text narrated by acclaimed actors, William Zappa and Patrick Dickson.

The musical score was a bold foray into what Jeremy imagined the sound would have evoked to the conscious mind in those times, with brilliant and challenging avant – garde jazz and classical sensibilities. Most challenging too, to the unsuspecting ear.

The visuals convinced the audience/viewers by the realness of the invasion and the treatment meted out to both Aboriginal and convicts at the time, supported by the brilliant narration by William Zappa and Patrick Dickson.

Jeremy Rose stood tall and proud as conductor and performer while taking his Earshift Orchestra through the execution of a brilliant score that brought more than generous applause at the end.

In his introductory presentation he encouraged widespread reading of The “Fatal Shore”, specially targeting politicians. I would like to think that this book is included in the schools curriculum.

I now have my signed copy of “Iron In The Blood”. Next is to procure a copy of “The Fatal Shore”.

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