What a line-up. Tina Lawton, Marian Henderson, Declan Affley (all three pictured) Alex Hood, Rob Inglis and the production writer, performer, poet and narrator Peter O'Shaughnessy with some musical and choral assistance from The Claire Poole Singers and the Don Burrows Quintet and also George Golla.
This is the show that inspired the 1968 release of the book with LP titled "The Restless Years" (LP contents posted before on the Australian Folk Blog) and the 1970 LP "Old Botany Bay" (part posted on the same blog here.)
However, the tracks on those LPs in no way truly reflected the tracks as performed in the show. Of course, the LP tracks do not have the incidental sounds in the file (e.g. foot stamping) but the differences are far greater than that. Some of the songs in the film do not appear on the LPs and neither Tina Lawton nor Declan Affley appear on the LPs and that is truly a significant omission. (I guess they had commitments to other record labels and/or publishers).
I will not pretend that this copy of the film is of the greatest quality. Of course, the original material is probably not that great either and there are a few glitches where frames appear to have been lost. Regardless, the material is, to me, absolutely enthralling and the power of some of the performances of the main folk singers was quite unexpected (I missed the show the first time around).
Marian Henderson give a very powerful performance in both an acting and singing sense and she appears to have been very comfortable in what is primarily a traditional folk musical. She is definitely the star. Tina Lawton - what a fine singing voice tragically lost so early. Declan Affley - so very credible in the roles he was cast especially with that beautiful clear deep voice - sadly also long gone. Alex Hood does a great job on his tracks but seems to be a little too self-conscious in front of the cameras.
Like I said, this is not a perfect copy but it still amply displays why this was Aunty's (ABC) first ever international award-winning show.
File size is just under 400Mb
Download from MediaFire (Note: Must download all three parts)
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