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'A shipwreck'd sailor, waiting for a sail:
No sail from day to day'

An original film/live performance hybrid by Brisbane Music Festival and Victorian Theatre Compoany

Charting a perilous journey through rough seas, shipwreck and heartache, Richard Strauss’ epic melodrama collides with the sweeping poetry of Alfred Tennyson to tell the story of Enoch Arden, a lost sailor trying to navigate his way home.


Words by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Music by Richard Strauss

Narrator: Matthew Connell
Pianist: Alex Raineri

Director/ Video Composition: Jak Scanlon
Producer: Samara Barr
Audio Engineer: Thomas Kunz
2nd Camera Operator: Kurtis Lowden
Graphic Design & Documentary: Chelsea Neate

'A moving and unembellished on screen reading... with subtle and sensitive piano accompaniment'

Kate Herbert

'A rarely seen work, it is a must for literature and music lovers alike'

Brisbane Stage

'There was power and intent in Connell's well acted performance...'


Performed from the Alex Theatre in Melbourne and the Brisbane Music Festival Studio in Brisbane, this cross border/cross disciplinary show offers a unique and experimental take on the Strauss/Tennyson classic. The performance is weaved together with an original Victorian Theatre Company film made by Jak Scanlon - connecting German Romanticism and British poetry with an Australian outback landscape. 

Duration: 69 minutes

Made in 2021.

Brisbane Music Festival

Praised for its “diverse programming” (Limelight), the annual Brisbane Music Festival (BMF) curated by Alex Raineri has swiftly established itself as one of the most vibrant additions to Australia’s arts scene. In 2023, the BMF celebrates its sixth year of eclectic approaches to programming, a cross-cultivation of musical offerings from the old and familiar to the vibrant and new. The BMF celebrates its point of difference to other arts organisations through its ambitious programming, equally balancing innovation/exploration with well-known content. A major ethos of the festival to date has been to present performances in unique and intimate spaces throughout the city of Brisbane, thereby incorporating a distinct flavour of the city itself into the festival. In ’23, BMF celebrates its new home in ‘Fourth Wall’, an intimate chamber music venue in the heart of Brisbane’s buzzing CBD. Whilst the essential stylistic bent of the festival focuses on classical music, previous major projects have included; cross-art form collaborations featuring theatre, visual-arts and contemporary dance and cross-genre shows traversing classical, musical theatre, jazz, folk, pop, and rock. Despite its youthful history the BMF has commissioned and presented the World Premiere performances of 57 new works by Australian composers. The BMF has a significant digital footprint and interrogates the digital space in innovative ways, including collaborations via-distance with artists across the globe and digital streaming of festival events to expand our reach far further than a live Brisbane-based audience. Artistic Director Alex Raineri was awarded a 2021 APRA/AMCOS Queensland Luminary Art Music Award for his commitment to Australian music through the BMF. Composer Chris Dench was awarded the APRA/AMCOS ‘Work of the Year’ award in 2020 for his stunning piano work passing bells: day. In 2022, ABC Classics released a commercial recording of a festival-commissioned chamber work by Erik Griswold, How Strange the Change. The BMF has featured some of Australia’s leading artists including; Sara Macliver, Orava Quartet, Natusko Yoshimoto, Karin Schaupp, Amy Lehpamer, Claire Edwardes, Paul Dean, and many others. The 2022 season will features artists such as Stefan Dohr, Ensemble Offspring, Lisa Moore, Stefan Cassomenos, Jessica Aszodi, Courtenay Cleary, and many more. The 2019 festival boasted an audience capacity of over 1,000 attendees over the course of its multiple events, a 300% ascension of audience statistics from its premiere iteration in 2018. The 3rd BMF in 2020 saw a transition to the digital space, with a ten-concert entirely online festival with a global audience of patrons from over ten countries around the world. The ‘21/’22 festivals saw the BMF in its most expanded format with multiple events (both live and digital) with a combined audience of over 4,000. Thus, the capacity for growth of the BMF is evident in its upward trajectory and in each year the festival celebrates its ability to offer employment opportunities to several Australian artists and arts-workers.

Alfred, Lord tennyson

Alfred Tennyson (6 August 1809 – 6 October 1892) was an English poet. He was the Poet Laureate during much of Queen Victoria's reign. In 1829, Tennyson was awarded the Chancellor's Gold Medal at Cambridge for one of his first pieces, "Timbuktu". He published his first solo collection of poems, Poems, Chiefly Lyrical, in 1830. "Claribel" and "Mariana", which remain some of Tennyson's most celebrated poems, were included in this volume. Although described by some critics as overly sentimental, his verse soon proved popular and brought Tennyson to the attention of well-known writers of the day, including Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Tennyson's early poetry, with its medievalism and powerful visual imagery, was a major influence on the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.  Source: DENISE VARNEY, RADICAL VISIONS Tennyson wrote Enoch Arden in 1864.

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