Buckley gets another chance

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WILLIAM Buckley is coming back to Rosebud on the 26 and 27 April. 

He is coming in the form of a chamber opera, locally devised by peninsula residents Antony Ransome (pictured), retired opera performer of thirty years, and renowned local historian Richard Cotter. 

The opera is based on the historic events of 1803 and 1835. This will be the first opera written and performed on the Mornington Peninsula. 

The opera tells the story of two cultures drawn together by extraordinary circumstances after William Buckley escaped from the Collins Settlement site in Sorrento in 1803. 

The site was the second ever attempt at settlement in Australia by the British after their arrival at Port Jackson (Sydney) in 1788. 

Buckley always protested his innocence of the crime he was transported for – stealing. On Christmas day 1803 he and five others made a run for freedom. Of the five, Buckley was the only successful escapee. 

He continued his escape by walking around Port Phillip, where he was taken in by the Wathaurong People of the Bellarine Peninsula and lived with them for the next thirty two years.

Indigenous soprano Shauntai Batzke plays the part of Buckley’s Indigenous wife and Buckley is played by Michael Lampard, an experienced international performer.

Directed by award winning stage director/designer and writer David Lampard (no relation), an award winning director, with the support of the Astral Theatre Society and Peninsula Chamber Musicians together with an exceptional cast all of whom embraced the opportunity to be included in a new Australian opera – this event is not be missed.

Two performances; Friday 26 April at 8pm and Saturday 27 April at 2pm at Rosebud Memorial Hall, 994 Pt Nepean Road Rosebud.

Bookings: www.trybooking.com/BATLO Enquiries: 0422 366 907

First published in the Southern Peninsula News – 9 April 2019

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