The wait is over - New Zealand's much loved folk comedy duo Flight Of The Conchords are finally coming to Australia! The Frontier Touring Company will be bringing Kiwi funny men Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement to visit fans on the other side of the Tasman for their first ever run of Australian headline shows this July.
Jemaine said of the announcement; "We are finally returning to Australia. Mostly to apologise."
n a buoyant career spanning almost fifteen years, Flight Of The Conchords has become one of Australia’s favourite comedy and musical acts, with the band gaining notoriety for their hilarious ditties including ‘Carol Brown’, ‘Foux Da Fafa’, ‘Epileptic Dogs’ and many more.
New Zealand’s self-proclaimed ‘fourth most popular folk-parody duo’ make musical comedy an art form. Throughout their live performances the duo picks up multiple instruments, including the ukulele, toy piano, keytar, synth and a ‘1987 Casio DG-20 Casio electric guitar set to mandolin’ to create the sounds of some of the most bizarrely wonderful crowd singalongs heard on-stage.
After getting their start in stand up comedy, Bret and Jemaine created a radio series for BBC Radio 2 before launching into acclaimed HBO comedy series Flight Of The Conchords which propelled the duo into the limelight on a global scale. The series spanned two seasons and earned them a massive 10 Emmy nominations and a WGA nomination for Best Comedy Series.
The musical musings of Flight Of The Conchords formed the backbone of their much loved, self titled series and were celebrated in two highly successful soundtracks; Flight Of The Conchords and I Told You I Was Freaky (out now through Sub Pop). These albums earned the band six spots in the Triple J Hottest 100 over two years for hits like ‘Business Time’, ‘Hurt Feelings’ and ‘Too Many Dicks on the Dancefloor’.
“It's safe to say this is the most endlessly playable comedy album of the new millennium.” – Uncut
“I Told You I Was Freaky is a smart, funny, musically vast album, giving everyone's favourite Kiwis a chance to broaden the canvas of their twitchy, awkward, displaced brand of comedy.” – musicOMH
“Even shorn of their comedic context, the best of these tracks still have the power to rupture internal organs at 20 paces... What separates this from any other comedy pastiche is the quality of the songs.” – Pitchfork
Far from strangers to the spotlight, Flight Of The Conchords have come a long way from winning Best Newcomer at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival more than a decade ago.
Most recently, both performers have been pursuing the big screen. Bret took on the role of Music Supervisor for The Muppets movie and recently won the Best Original Song Oscar for his composition Man Or Muppet. This track beat out its counterpart from the film Rio to win the award, a film that coincidentally featured Bret’s partner in crime and upcoming Men In Black III star Jemaine Clement.
It’s hard to pinpoint what has kept the duo from touring our shores all this time, was it band manager Murray’s inability to get the guys a gig outside of an aquarium, Bret’s commitments to his sign holding job or Jemaine’s fear that his Aussie ex-girlfriend Keitha would be waiting eagerly for his arrival? Regardless, one thing’s for sure – it’s going to be one heck of a good time.
Between the incredible songwriting, witty on stage banter and catchy melodies that will be stuck in your head for days, Bret and Jemaine are reuniting once again for these very special shows to guarantee a night of fun that will leave you singing about ‘Sugarlumps’ and the epic ‘Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros’ rap battle for days afterwards.
Come hang out with New Zealand’s best export after sheep’s wool, as Flight Of The Conchords woo you with their fearless rhymes, tough urban beats and the best daggy jumpers their country has to offer.
That can't be right surely - that's only a few hundred more than our town hall and that's really not a very big place!nonchalant obsession wrote:I just read that it seats 2,679.
Concert Hall 2,679
Opera Theatre 1,507
Drama Theatre 544
The Studio 400
Utzon Room 210
The Opera House houses the following performance venues:
The Concert Hall, with 2,679 seats, is the home of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and used by a large number of other concert presenters. It contains the Sydney Opera House Grand Organ, the largest mechanical tracker action organ in the world, with over 10,000 pipes.
The Opera Theatre, a proscenium theatre with 1,507 seats, is the Sydney home of Opera Australia and The Australian Ballet.
The Drama Theatre, a proscenium theatre with 544 seats, is used by the Sydney Theatre Company and other dance and theatrical presenters.
The Playhouse, an end-stage theatre with 398 seats.
The Studio, a flexible space with a maximum capacity of 400 people, depending on configuration.
The Utzon Room, a small multi-purpose venue, seating up to 210.
The Forecourt, a flexible open-air venue with a wide range of configuration options, including the possibility of utilising the Monumental Steps as audience seating, used for a range of community events and major outdoor performances. The Forecourt will be closed to visitors and performances 2011–2014 to construct a new entrance tunnel to a rebuilt loading dock for the Opera Theatre.
Other areas (for example the northern and western foyers) are also used for performances on an occasional basis. Venues at the Sydney Opera House are also used for conferences, ceremonies and social functions.
nonchalant obsession wrote:Oh man, you mean THAT Sydney Opera House?
I listened to Bret on the triple j radio show a little while ago and when they mentioned the Sydney gig Bret said, "We'll be doing some of our opera stuff that night."
Kiwis take flight around Australia
JACQUI BAHR, The West Australian
April 10, 2012, 11:43 am
Last time Bret McKenzie was in Perth, he was playing rock-reggae with his old band the Black Seeds. They came minus a saxophone player, who'd been jailed in Brisbane the night before for tackling a bouncer after being cut off from a closing bar.
"That's my only Perth story. I don't know that much about Perth," says McKenzie, who'll return to WA in July for Flight of the Conchords' live national tour.
"I think a lot of Kiwis go (to WA) to work in gold mines. We've got some gold mining songs we might try out.
"Maybe in-between the shows we can do some gold mining."
But it doesn't look like McKenzie is in need of a windfall. As he gets set to tour the country as one half of the cult Kiwi musical comedy duo, he is an international star. Surprisingly, this will be the popular New Zealand double act's first Australian headline tour in their 15-year career.
McKenzie, along with partner in crime Jemaine Clement, shot to international fame on the back of their acclaimed self-titled New York-set comedy TV series. First shown on groundbreaking American pay-TV network HBO in 2007, Flight of the Conchords earned them 10 Emmy nominations before finishing up after two seasons in 2009.
Since then, McKenzie has taken out an Oscar for the song Man or Muppet from The Muppets movie, which was named best original song at this year's Academy Awards. Unsurprisingly, he's pretty hot property in Hollywood right now.
"I've got a lot of work. Winning an Oscar is very good for working in Hollywood," he says without giving any details away. "I've always just done the things that I'm into so I'll just keep working on that but it's going to be easier to do it. We'll see what happens."
Recently, both McKenzie and Clement have pursued solo careers on the big screen. Clement has a role in Men in Black III, set for release this year. The Muppets director James Bobin, who co-created the Conchords TV series, asked McKenzie to come on board as music supervisor for the film. McKenzie wrote four of the original songs on the soundtrack. Funnily enough, Man or Muppet beat fellow Oscar-nominated track Real In Rio from the animated film Rio, which featured Clement.
McKenzie has roles in three feature films coming out this year. He stars alongside Australian comedian Hamish Blake in the Kiwi black comedy Two Little Boys and plays an elf in fellow Wellingtonian Peter Jackson's The Hobbit. He also has a role in the film adaptation of English romantic novel, Austenland.
"I play a love interest in a rom-com so I do a lot of on-screen kissing," he says of Austenland. "I'm now a professional on-screen kisser."
Taking these roles into account, one would assume McKenzie is about to tread the well-worn path of many a famous comedian and make a career out of acting in films.
"Nothing's guaranteed but I'm going to keep trying," he laughs. "I definitely will be involved in films, whether I'm acting or writing or doing music for them. I'll just do a bit of everything. I kind of enjoy all parts of it."
So with Hollywood biting at both their heels, it's with a certain wistfulness that McKenzie and Clement cross the ditch to return to their roots on stage as the Conchords.
"Reliving old times is kind of why we enjoy touring. We started off touring," he says.
"I just love the way you can try ideas out each night and it doesn't matter, whereas for TV and film there's a lot of pressure that you have to get everything right."
The live shows will feature the duo's famous songs and on-stage banter. Dressed in signature daggy jumpers and joined by a guest cello player, they'll pick up multiple instruments, including the ukulele, toy piano, keytar and a 1987 Casio electric guitar.
"There's a lot more improvising between songs so it's literally like a Simon and Garfunkel concert. We're sitting there singing our songs and then chatting in-between," McKenzie says.
"It will involve us singing a lot of our old songs and possibly a few new ones depending on how we go over the next few months writing them."
Flight of the Conchords perform at Challenge Stadium on July 18. Tickets go on sale April 17 through Ticketmaster.
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