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concert jan 17

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Here’s link to a review of Noam’s performance at the “Shir Madness”2010 festival Sydney:

Review From Australian Stage Website

Noam Blatt is something else again, with roots reaching deep into Middle Eastern culture at large, his performance starts with a group hug with his band. A piercingly blue-eyed bloke with a winning smile, he seems genuinely imbued with some kind of spirit. He sings like he hails from heaven: in the register and with the calibre of Rufus Wainwright. He sings in Hebrew as well as English; a seamless fusion of the ancient, traditional and contemporary, while paying witting or unwitting homage to an even wider, wilder world of influences, from flamenco to Yiddish folk, klezmer and gypsy. Prayerful, sad, tender and touching, but with a primal rhythmic undertow that almost compels one to dance. There’s magic here: in his anecdotes, imbued with disarming sense of humour (like the one about his brother hankering to get back to a wartorn part of Israel after a week or so with their mother), songs and charismatic capacity to connect with an audience. Could this be the long-awaited Moshiach, at last?

As is so often and refreshingly the case, these days, Blatt defies classification. Suffice to say, if you like hearing the old songs, from the ghetto, you’ll probably like NB. If you hanker for your younger days, on the kibbutz, you’ll probably like NB. If you love Latin, you’ll probably like NB. And so it goes. There’s an intergenerational, non-denominational, secular and religious, multilingual universality about this young bloke. He has a way with an acoustic guitar too.

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The Lawson Mechanics Institute is again being used as a successful performance venue. Recent events have included Radio Plays by the Brook spooky men's choraleTheatre, a concert and dance that attracted over 100 people, from young children to grandparents, who danced the night away and thoroughly enjoyed the music supplied by Blue Mountains Folk Club, and two concerts given by the Spooky Men’s Chorale, which packed the hall to capacity.

The Spooky Men’s Chorale have just launched a new album which was CD of the Week at the ABC. They were in top form at the hall and clearly the audience had a great time. Excellent CD sales on the night indicated they are a big hit with the people of the Blue Mountains.

These events have revealed the wealth of talent in the Blue Mountains community. They also reminded attendees that the Lawson Hall is finally regaining its historic splendour as a wonderful space for theatre, music and dancing. The building has been renovated and repaired by Council and the management committee has worked hard to set it up as a space for larger events as well as smaller community activities, such as fencing classes, drama classes and meetings.

Council has approved the use of a grassed parking area to the east of the building and further development of this proposal is underway. This land belongs to the state government (RTA/RMS) who have agreed to a long term lease for Council. There are also many parking spaces in the town centre and Honour Ave, but people are also encouraged to walk, cycle and catch public transport to events, as has been the practice for 110 years from when the building was first opened first opened in 1906. Keep an eye out for exciting events in the future.

  1. Nick Ernest says:

    Congratulations to all who worked to save the Hall.
    I remember the early 80’s and bush dances, what great fun had by many. It would be great to do it again despite the now creaking bones.
    Looking good Lawson Mechanics Institute.

  2. Siobhan Rothsey says:

    I remember the heavy rock bands in the ’90’s that played up at the hall…Mutated Muppet among them. The acoustics were good! Best wishes for tomorrow’s opening!

  3. Erst says:

    It’s so good to see the Mechanics Institute finally having great performances – like the Spooky Men, Brook Theatre, Folk Club, Rock and Roll dances! After all Lawson has been through with the road widening this will bring some life back to the town and provide an opportunity for the people of Blue Mountains to display their talents in a historic performance space with character. It’s also a fine space for smaller community events like the Permaculture and Transition Towns groups, fencing classes, art exhibitions etc. Enjoy!