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ENTERTAINER STEPPING OUT • GIGS • ENTERTAINMENT • MOVIES • TV GUIDE
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FLAK AT THE Q
Michael Veitch will perform his one-man stage show called Flak , which tells the story of five men who experienced war first-hand. Photo: Justin Stephens
Show shares compelling war stories
The survival story of a Lancaster
bomber pilot whose plane exploded
around him is just one of the five
unforgettable World War I tales to be
told at The Q by performer Michael
Veitch in Flak.
From April 28 to May 2, Veitch will
present a one-hour show featuring five
stories in the compelling way they
were told to him, by men who
experienced the war firsthand.
Veitch intertwined his own story of
how he became interested in the
airforce. "I was just an odd child . . . I
started making model aeroplanes and
that's how I got interested in the
airmen,'' he said.
Flak features Veitch in the roles of
five men: two Australians, an
Englishman, a Welshman and
Veitch recalled interviewing one of
the men, a Lancaster bomber pilot
whose plane was shot down.
"There was an enormous explosion
but he wasn't strapped in at the time,''
He [the pilot] was thrown out of
the plane totally unharmed.
He remembers floating through
the air with the aircraft around him
thinking he was dead.
He had a thought that perhaps he
wasn't, and he opened his parachute.''
One Australian story he performs is
the tale of air commodore James
Coward, who retired to Canberra and
died about five years ago.
Veitch said he would love to find out
if James' wife Sylvie was still
"He was an absolutely wonderful
man," he said.
"Funny and charming, he
remembered his battle days
It's breathtaking to hear his story."
Veitch said a common theme with
the men he interviewed, over 60 to
date for his books, Flak, Fly and the
soon-to-be-released Heroes of the Sky,
was they did not think their stories
were worth telling.
"They don't think they did anything
special,'' he said.
They had such different attitudes,
that there was nothing glorious or
heroic about what they did."
Veitch said he was astounded when
many of the old men said they had
never told their story of survival and
resilience to anybody.
"One fellow's wife, she stood
standing looking at her husband and
said, we've been married 50 years and
I've never heard this','' he said.
They're all such lovely men, so
modest and charming and
Tickets for Flak are available from
6285 6290 or theq.net.au.
1 The internationally
acclaimed Pink Floyd
Experience will perform in
Canberra on Thursday at 8pm
for their Wish You Were Here
tour to mark the 40th
anniversary of the release of
the album. Wish You Were
Here remains one of the
fastest selling albums of all
time and sold more than
13 million copies worldwide.
Tickets start from $79 and are
available online at
2 Melbourne garage-surf
party animals La Bastard
team up with Adelaide rock
'n' roll gang The Villenettes
on Saturday for "a night of
mayhem" at the Phoenix Bar
in Civic. They will be joined by
Canberra outfit The King Hits
from 9.30pm. Tickets $5 at the
3 A bush dance will be held
at Tharwa Hall on
Saturday from 7pm. The Bush
Capital Band will keep
Supper served from 9pm.
Everyone is asked to bring a
plate to share. Bookings
essential, phone Mary on
0402 812 741.
4 An Evening with Noel
Fielding promises to be
unique, featuring live
animation, music and some of
television characters such as
The Moon and Fantasy Man.
Fielding, one half of the
award-winning comedy duo
of The Mighty Boosh, will
perform at the Canberra
Theatre on Monday at 8pm.
Tickets from $80 at canberra
5 Telstra Tower will play host
to an exhibition
highlighting the natural and
cultural history of Black
Mountain at the heart of
Canberra. On display on the
lower ground floor in the
Heritage Gallery, the
exhibition features beautiful
photographs of the area. Free
access from 9am to 9pm.
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