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2008 Event Media Release - Patti Smith

Issued 18 August 2008

Patti Smith
15 October
Concert Hall

Sydney Opera House presents American rock legend Patti Smith in a “show to shake your world” on 15 October 2008, Concert Hall.

For the first time in a decade, the so-called ‘godmother of punk” will perform for Australian audiences, showcasing her critically acclaimed new album Twelve and the best of her back catalogue.

Bursting onto the New York music scene in ‘67 vowing to ‘kick poetry in the ass,’ Smith lit the spark that ignited the punk explosion with her ecstatic blend of free-form poetry and three-chord rock.

Her first album, Horses, was released in 1975 and is widely considered to be a staple in American rock music. In 2006, Time Magazine hailed it as one of the 100 greatest albums of all time, and Michael Stipe of R.E.M, who bought it as a high school student, said that it "tore my limbs off and put them back on in a whole different order.”

Today, Smith still possesses the same wiry physique and explosive stage energy that turned heads in the 80’s and 90’s and prompted numerous critics to dub her “the female Mick Jagger.” Even now, she revels in being likened to her pop idol: "You can't imagine…me being this skinny, weird kid from New Jersey, who saw The Rolling Stones in 1965 in a high school gymnasium, never thinking ever that I'd be performing a handful of years later being compared to him." *

Throughout the late 80’s and 90’s, Smith not only increased her repertoire of songs but also authored a number of books containing original poetry and artwork. Recently, she staged her own exhibition in Paris entitled “Land 250,” a show of drawings, audio recordings, and videos which covered the last 30 years of her life.

With five albums out in the past 13 years and more to come, Smith has no intention of stopping. Next month, she plans to release a musical rendition of some of her 1996 poems. She doesn’t drink or smoke, and says that she still feels “healthy and strong.”

"I don't have any regrets in terms of how I've conducted my life," she says. "I've always respected my life and I'm not a self-destructive person. "What I wanted to do in rock'n'roll was merge poetry with sonic scapes, and the two people who had contributed so much to that were Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison.”

Unlike other concerts, Smith will put a unique twist on her Sydney performance by creating her set list on the spot, choosing her songs only minutes before taking the stage. She will be performing in the Concert Hall, the Opera House’s largest venue, with a four-piece band.

Season Details - Sydney
Date: Wed 15 Oct
Tickets: $110 - $39.
Duration: 1hr 30min no interval
Venue: Concert Hall
Bookings: 02 9250 7777 /

Season Details – Melbourne
Venue: the Arts Centre, Hamer Hall                            
When:  Sat 11 & Sun 12 Oct at 9pm      
Duration: 1hr 30min no interval
Prices:    $104  - $48
Bookings: Ticketmaster 1300 136 166 /

Sydney Opera House Adventures Media Partners; Signwave, SBS Corporation, Foxtel.


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