A Surfers Paradise penthouse party for a 118 year old franken-man might not be your usual Saturday night out, but we guarantee it will be one to remember. ‘Hotelling’ is the brainchild of celebrated Australian interactive artist David Pledger and Bleached Arts’ genre-pushing Artistic Director Louise Bezzina, and — as you would expect from these two at the helm — is a cultural event like no other.
Summoned to Peppers’ breathtaking Penthouse apartment, with uninterrupted views of the Pacific Ocean, audience members will be invited into the intoxicating world of Richard Hightower (Todd MacDonald); one of the world’s richest businessmen. Described as “the mother of all Last Suppers”, ‘Hightower Hotelling’ injects audience members into the heart of the story, where they feast not only on Hightowers’ intriguing tale, but also on sumptuous bites and sommelier-curated wines from Peppers’ hatted restaurant, Seaduction. Oh, there’s a high priestess involved. We got all the whys and wherefores from Louise Bezzina herself.
We were so excited after the pilot of ‘Hotelling’. What was the feedback from it like, and what did you learn from it?
Yes there certainly was a lot of excitement after the first ‘Hotelling’ and the feedback was so positive that we just had to do it again. We learnt a lot from the first production. You always learn something from every show you do but with a logistically heavy project like this you certainly learn about audience flow and timings of lifts and other fun stuff like that.
It’s such a fascinating concept. Was it inspired by anything in particular, or if not how did the idea come about?
This project was a pilot project of the City of Gold Coast to activate the Hotel space and look at a new cultural tourism offer in the market. It was really their concept and Bleached Arts worked with David Pledger to bring the creative and the vision to life. This year’s ‘Hotelling’ and last year’s are very much inspired by the nuances of the Hotel, the design, the cliental and the architecture. It is such a rich platform for curating a new work.
Why do you think the Gold Coast is a good place to host these kind of quirky, contemporary arts events?
The Gold Coast is the perfect place for quirky events, particularly in Hotels. Hotels are part of the fabric of the city and what a fantastic way to showcase these assets that through a specifically curated arts experience. The Gold Coast is known for incredible experiences in varying forms and this is truly an incredible experience.
The pilot outing had some fairly dark themes within it. Can we expect more of the same, and if not what are some of the main themes of this year?
It is very different to last year. Different cast and totally different narrative. The Hotel is obviously different. It is immersive, decadent, exclusive, intimate and entertaining. There is also a food component in this year’s event that really sets off the whole experience.
Can you give us a sneak peek into one room that you’re excited about?
Definitely the Penthouse, I mean how can you not be excited by a penthouse. And the view… oh my goodness it is to die for!! Very special.
What are some words of wisdom or preparation you’d impart to someone attending ‘Hotelling’ for the first time?
Come with an open mind and be ready for a mind blowing experience. It really will be like nothing you have ever seen or experienced before.
Anything else you’d like people to know?
Book now as tickets are selling fast!
You heard the lady. Hotelling runs for a very limited season from 1 to 5 November in the Peppers Soul penthouse, Surfers Paradise, and some shows are already sold out. Tickets through Eventbrite.