Angela Shanahan rss

Anzac Diary

2 May 2015

I am writing this diary from the Opera, not the theatrical sort, we are on a cruise ship anchored for the past four days off the Gallipoli peninsula. On board… Read more

Feminism: no longer a Left/Right divide

22 November 2014

I am not a clubable woman. I won’t even join a book club, because my contrarian nature would get me kicked out. Naturally I am not a feminist. Not just… Read more

It aint over till the diabetically-challenged lady sings

18 October 2014

‘Seduction, sacrifice and side-splitting satire. 2015 has it all, buy your subscription now…’ says the promotional email for Opera Australia 2015. Save your money, I say. Lately, you don’t actually… Read more


Foreign notes

5 July 2014

We have been in Italy since the beginning of May when I had what people politely term a ‘significant birthday’, so significant that I was anxious to escape any mention… Read more

St. Peter's Basilica

Our valued Vatican envoy

26 October 2013
Holy See, Unholy Me: 1,000 Days in Rome Tim Fischer

ABC Books, pp.305, $32.99, ISBN: 9780733328350

In mid-2009, I landed in Italy for an extended break, as it happened, on the day of the L’Aquila earthquake. During the three months of my stay, I managed to… Read more


5 October 2013

I have been spending the week in Rome, having breakfast and dinner most days with Pope Francis I. Literally. How did a suburban mum from Canberra end up sharing digs,… Read more

Never-ending ‘schoolies’

29 December 2012

Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive, But to be young was very heaven! My youngest is on a rather tame ‘schoolies’ break at the south coast, and… Read more

Australia Diary 4 August 2012

4 August 2012

We have been in Italy for the past two weeks and I am writing this from the terrace of our newly renovated house in Introdacqua, the village where my grandmother… Read more

Vocal support

19 May 2012

It is a rare thing for an opera to be the subject of a newspaper editorial. The success of Handa Opera’s La Traviata on Sydney Harbour turned the Australian into… Read more

Australian Books: In tent city

23 July 2011

Memoirs are all the rage, and Australian memoirs have a particular flavour. They tend to exemplify what seems today like an old fashioned stereotype: the little Aussie battler battling through.… Read more

The laudable legacy of Lionel Logue

12 February 2011

The latest royal film The King’s Speech has caused a stir on many fronts. Geoffrey Rush is brilliant as Lionel Logue, the elocution teacher whose hit-and-miss methods controlled George VI’s… Read more

No to feelgood ambassadors

11 December 2010

What does it take to get you angry, really angry, so angry you could punch someone? Well, I got that angry last week. Why? It might have seemed like nothing… Read more


22 October 2010

Rome I am here for the canonisation of Australia’s first saint, Mary MacKillop. Rome I am here for the canonisation of Australia’s first saint, Mary MacKillop. For a mum who… Read more

Mother inferior

29 May 2010

A Pressure Cooker Saved My Life: how to Have It All, Do It All and Keep It All Together by Juanita Phillips ABC Books, $35, pp. 259, ISBN 9780733325885 Juanita… Read more