This interview first appeared at http://www.stagewhispers.com.au/news/every-man-bastoni-everynight-everynight
In its time Pentridge Prison held some of Australia’s most notorious criminals. From Ned Kelly to Chopper Read, the bluestone walls carry the weight of these dark moments of many sociopaths who once dwelled behind its bars since its opening in 1851.One of these prisoners, Christopher Dale Flannery, went on to become one of Australia’s most infamous contract killers, Mr. Rent-A-Kill, whose years within Pentridge are chronicled in the revival of Ray Mooney’s 1978 playEverynight, Everynight. Among the play’s leading actors, Steve Bastoni has found himself back in Flannery’s world after his performance in the 1995 mini-series Blue Murder. Steve was generous enough to have a quick chat about the play, and his varied career. Personally, I’m not familiar with the story. Luckily that admission was enough to get the “every-man” Bastoni talking. “It [Everynight, Everynight] was made into a film in the early ‘90s starring Bill Hunter, the legendary Bill Hunter” You’ve got to love anyone who begins an interview declaring Hunter a legend. I ask him about the play - should audiences be expecting a dark piece? “Well, it was written in ’78, and based on true events of H-Division in Pentridge, the horrible conditions and brutality brought upon inmates by the guards….
There used to be artistic elements, and year round all art forms have a prize element-
Dancing Compeitions, Painting/Sculpting Shows, Composing Music, Film-making/Theatre/TV Awards Shows, Singing Contests, even poetry has prizes.
So why has there never been an Arts Olympics? The closest I can find is the
Jeux de la Francophonie, which is a mixed arts and sports games for French Speakers.
It could very easily work and could make for some pretty awesome television. And if you are going to doubt how Fashion or Mime will make excellent TV; Project Runway is popular plus The Artist just won how many Oscars? Let’s explore the possibilities.
There are a million and one dance categories, so a programme of around 10 genres would be chosen. Medals would be based on;
Each in Contemporary and Classical, and their many different styles.
You can tell the areas I’m unfamiliar with because I didn’t know how to fill them. But this is pretty much a brainstorming session so I’m allowed to, for now. I have also left out many categories, not intentional, just a brainstorm for now.
Many of the events could be mixed, as Art isn’t necessarily a matter of strength. The performance categories could be segregated Male and Female, but something like Photography is an open field.
The same rules would apply with these games as the Olympics with it being an amateur competition, so where Russell Crowe couldn’t compete in any fields he specializes in (Film/TV, Music), he could compete in the Fashion Design categories if he so wished.
One thought though, if I was the organizer of these hypothetical Artisticlympics, I wouldn’t hold them on any year that has an Olympics/World Cup/Comm Games type event, I would pick a year like 2013 and then run every 4 years to make sure the World calendar isn’t crowded with major events and so over-excited people like me have something to look forward to on those odd-numbered years.
But with a lot of careful planning, a great deal of imagination and hard work, these Games might work? If anyone is willing to work with me to campaign for them, let’s do this!