Celebrated First People’s composer to bring powerful musical performance to Blacktown 

Home » Celebrated First People’s composer to bring powerful musical performance to Blacktown 

Moogahlin Performing Arts and Blacktown Arts in association with Sydney Festival present The Last Shot by Troy Russell, a must-see musical odyssey traversing romance, heartbreak and tragedy.

Based on true events, The Last Shot by Troy Russell is an intimate musical tale of romance, heartbreak and tragedy in colonial times.

Star-crossed lovers Jimmy and Florrie take flight through Gomeroi Country. One night, after singing and dancing at the local camp, a foreboding event catapults them into turmoil. Forced to make an escape, Jimmy and Florrie set off into the night followed by a landowner in pursuit of revenge. 

Drawing on a range of musical genres, and accompanied by archival imagery, The Last Shot is a story of romance and chaos, pulling on your heartstrings and lifting your spirits. 

The piece will enjoy its world premiere in Blacktown at The Leo Kelly Blacktown Arts Centre, in partnership with Sydney Festival.

“As Mayor of Blacktown City, it gives me great pleasure to welcome this marvellous musical performance to our City,” Blacktown City Mayor Tony Bleasdale OAM said. “Blacktown City has the highest urban population of First Nations people in NSW and Council is committed to supporting the arts and the work of Indigenous creatives, whether it be on stage, on screen or on canvas.”

Drawing on a range of musical genres and accompanied by powerful archival imagery, The Last Shot is the brainchild of acclaimed composer, musician and filmmaker Troy Russell (Biripi/ Gamillaroi).

The compelling work was first developed and shown in January 2021 as part of Yellamundie Festival, a platform dedicated to showing new First Peoples work for stage with a diversity and range of stories and voices from across Australia.

Beginning his musical journey at 11 years old, Troy first developed a passion for music when a neighbour offered to teach him the fundamentals. After discovering an old photograph of his father playing a banjo, he learned that his family from Taree was one of music.

Russell is currently one of the inaugural First Peoples Artist-in-Residence at the Sydney Conservatorium and, for The Last Shot, has collaborated with Storyteller, Writer and Musician, Nardi Simpson (Yuwaalaraay) of vocal duo The Stiff Gins and Dramaturg, Victoria Kennedy (Wongaibon). The pair are joined by a stellar team of musicians including, Breeana Baxter, John Blair (Nucoorilma, Gamilaroi), Kevin Hunt, Leila Hamilton and Preston Peachy (Wiradjuri/ Malyangapa).

Moogahlin Performing Arts is no stranger to Sydney Festival stages, presenting the Yellamundie Festival (2013, 2017, 2019, 2021) which has so far been the launchpad for eleven new First Peoples stage productions including the Sydney Festival world premieres of The Weekend by Henrietta Baird (2019) and The Visitors by Jane Harrison (2020).

Similarly, Blacktown Arts has presented a range of shows with the Festival, including Home Country (2017) and Blak Box – Four Winds (2019), both in partnership with UTP, as well as the world premiere of Broken Glass (2018), in partnership with Moogahlin Performing Arts.

In addition to the performance, audiences can enjoy a sumptuous selection of food and beverages with traditional native ingredients, provided by local Aboriginal catering company, Kallico Catering, before journeying through the annual Blacktown City Art Prize.

Now in its 26th year, the annual Prize showcases the creativity of the region, displaying a range of visual practices and elevating the profiles of the finalists.


Venue: The Leo Kelly Blacktown Arts Centre, 78 Flushcombe Road, Blacktown NSW 2148
Dates: Thursday 19 – Saturday 21 May 2022
Times: 7pm and 4pm (Saturday matinee)
Price: General admission $35, 2-person cabaret $70, 4-person cabaret $140

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