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Carmen et Error is a large-scale hybrid choreographic/vocal work which reprises Ovid's tragic aetion - or origin story - of the diving bird, an unfinished episode in the Metamorphoses.

With dance legend Andrew Morrish as the complex figure of Aesacus, Carmen is a parable commemorating the revocation of Ovid's exile by Rome 2,000 years after he was banished by Emperor Augustus to a remote coastal town by the Black Sea in 8 AD. There, the broken poet lamented the reason for his exile as ‘a carmen et error’ (lit. a poem and a mistake).


With powerful parallels between life and fiction across two millenia, Carmen is therefore part of an ongoing story rooted in the freedom of artistic expression, contemporary diasporas of exile, and the radical palinodic power of ‘taking back’ or ‘unsaying’.

When questioned by councillors why Rome City Council were revisiting Ovid’s exile order in 2017, Deputy Mayor Luca Bergman replied: “It is about the fundamental right of artists to express themselves freely in societies in which, around the world, the freedom of artistic expression is increasingly constrained.’

Dante, the great Renaissance poet, was similarly pardoned in 2008 by Florence – from where he was exiled on pain of death in 1302.

The attention drawn to both the liberal freedom of artistic expression and the condition of exile are very deep touchstones for a work such as Carmen that claims to do nothing other than describe the origin of a diving bird.


Moreover, the appeal of thinking history through the present, and rereading Ovid’s exile in 8 AD through the contemporary migrant crisis, is particularly powerful from the perspective of a ‘once-again-frightened Australia’ (as Anne Summers put it in her 2017 Kenneth Myers Oration).

Ultimately, Carmen et Error presents these problems in cunning simplicity within a coastal Australian purgatory surveyed by a broken, comic and neurotic cormorant as he searches for hope among the Lethe's undead chorus.  


Andrew Morrish - Performer

Amelia McQueen - Dancer

Nate Gilkes - Choral Director

Maria Lurighi - Performer

Adelina Larsson - Choreographer

Anthony Coxeter - Playwright

Fausto Brusamolino - Lighting designer

Sebastián Silva - Set designer/architect

Andrew Morrish  is a freelance performer, researcher, facilitator and teacher of improvisation working between Austalia and Europe. He began improvising with Al Wunder's "Theatre of the Ordinary" in Melbourne Australia in I982. In 1987 he formed "Trotman and Morrish" with Peter Trotman. 

He was appointed as a Visiting Research Fellow in the Drama Division of the University of Huddersfield (U.K.) from 2008-2013.

He was awarded the Australia Council for the Arts, Dance Fellowship for 2016-2017.

Since  2000 he has undertaken the development of his solo performing and also teaching extensively in Australia and Europe.

Amelia McQueen has been an ensemble member for companies such as Tanz Atelier Wien, Tasdance, and Stalker Theatre Company. She has toured internationally with physical theatre company Strange Fruit since 2004 and in 2011/12 was a Member of its’ Board of Directors. '


Under the direction of Tanja Liedtke she developed a role for ‘Twelfth Floor’ that she performed internationally.


Her project ‘This Town Is Loud Now’ was supported by Arts House, Melbourne 2016.


Nate Gilkes is an artist working across many disciplines of theatre, music and performance. As theatre maker, director, music director and performer, Nate’s artistic practice sits at the colliding points of music theatre and opera.


He performed in Oedipus Rex/Symphony of Psalms (Sydney Philharmonia Choirs/Sydney Festival 2010; Director Peter Sellars).


He did Music Direction for Hipbone Sticking Out (Big hART, Melbourne International Arts Festival) & Blue Angel (Big hART, Tasmanian Arts Festival)


Maria Lurighi is Mona Experiences and Partnership Director at MONA - Museum of Old and New Art and a vocalist who has dabbled in jazz, opera and contemporary styles of singing throughout her illustrious career.


She is the coordinator for Contemporary Voice at the University of Tasmania after 17 years as a Lecturer in Contemporary Voice.


Maria has performed in the Melbourne International Arts Festival, The State Theatre of WA and Ten days on the Island with BighART.

Adelina Larsson has choreographed & performed for performing arts companies presenting at Melbourne Arts Festival, Sydney Opera House, The State Theatre Centre of WA, Australian Institute of Sport, The Canberra Theatre Centre, PICA, The Lock Up, Newcastle and Fremantle Arts Centre.


She is Associate Artist with Big hART and the founder and director of Strange Attractor - a platform for artists who work with experimental practices in trans-disciplinary spaces.


Currently she is Associate Artist of Critical Path.


Anthony Coxeter is a playwright and dramaturge. 

He works across Australia on a wide variety of creative projects involving architecture, theatre and film, lectures in transnational governance and literary cultures, and serves as the founding Artistic Director of Elective Affinities, an arts company at the intersection of discrete projects and whole-of-life stories. 

He is the poet behind the palinode 'Prologue to the Euthanasia of Aesacus', the basis for Carmen et Error. 

Fausto Brusamolino is a lighting designer and creative coder based in Sydney. He has collaborated and designed shows for Sydney Festival, Sydney Opera House, Opera Australia, Australian Ballet, New Zealand International Arts Festival, MAU, Bangarra, MCA, Biennale of Sydney, Post, The Cad Factory, Ruckus, Urban Theatre Projects, Teatro Stabile di Torino. 


Fausto received the 2018 Green Room Award for Best Visual Design for Tangiwai, directed by Victoria Hunt.

Sebastian Silva-Gonzalez is a Chilean architect currently based in Sydney, Australia. He works with Josep Ferrando in various art/architecture related projects located both in Europe and South America. In this period 8 Quebradas pavilion was built in the desert hills of Los Vilos, designed to run the old Chilean dessert train tracks. The project seeks to create an appropriate scale between the desert and the architecture. Architects Kengo Kuma and Alejandro Aravena will also build on this site.

Supported by Critical Path Choreographic Centre

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