Jazz Garters 4

Canberra Repertory. Director: Cate Clelland. Theatre 3, Acton, A.C.T. 21 June – 6 July, 2013.

The  year in which Old Time Music Hall last incarnated through Canberra Repertory is already becoming shrouded in the mists of time, with two speakers at Jazz Garters 4 offering differing versions.  Regardless, this annual homage to musical variety acts enjoyed a relatively long tradition, and its old-world, rather gentlemanly, flavour didn't at all limit a prolific creativity, particularly in the company's clever update of lyrics and in consistently great choreography.


Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts, Brisbane. 22-29 June, 2013.

Salōn eclipses Brisbane’s entertainment this month! You want different, debauched, amazing, mind-bending entertainment? This is your show!

Historically, the Salōn was a 17th-19thcentury gathering hosted by grand personages in spacious lounge rooms. It featured artists and writers on revolutionary fringes where delicate matters could be debated in privacy. Then came composers and instrumentalists.

The Phantom of the Opera

By Andrew Lloyd Webber, Charles Hart and Richard Stilgoe. Windmill Theatre Company (Vic). Director: Chris Hughes. Musical Director: Julia Buchanan. Choreographer: Robert Mulholland. Drum Theatre. June 21 - July 14, 2013

I well remember the professional production of the The Phantom of the Opera and I was equally impressed with Windmill’s effort.

Although budget constraints did not allow for the massive chandelier used in the professional production, everything else about this was spectacular. There were moving staircases, and walkways, a motorized boat and scenery flying in and out to allow the action to flow. The lighting was also very innovative and the costumes lavish.

This Is Where We Live

By Vivienne Walshe. Griffin Independent and Just Visiting. SBW Stables Theatre, Sydney. Director: Francesca Smith. 19 June – 13 July, 2013.

Winner of the 2012 Griffin Award for outstanding contemporary Australian play, Vivienne Walshe’s poetic drama of teenage angst and passion now takes its place in the 2013 Griffin season. A 75-minute two-hander, marvellously acted and intriguingly directed, This Is Where We Live makes demands on its audience. We have to work at the words we hear and at the stage pictures we see.

Cranked Up

Circus Oz 2013. Birrarung Marr (btw Federation Square and Batman Ave), Melbourne – 19 June – 14 July, 2013.

Cranked Up is Circus Oz’s latest extravaganza, and according to the program notes it’s revised from its From the Ground Up show which premiered in Melbourne last June. Not having seen the previous incarnation, or indeed any past Circus Oz performance, I was pleasantly surprised to have my expectations exceeded by a truly talented group of performers who seemed to be pulling out all the stops to ensure everyone in the audience had a good time.

Shane Warne The Musical

Book, Music and Lyrics by Eddie Perfect. Directed by Simon Phillips. Hamer Hall 20th and 21st June, 2013.

If you don’t know Eddie Perfect you might look at the credits and think he is a megalomaniac, especially when you add the fact that he is also the star. The simpler, but less convenient, truth is that Perfect is the most incredibly talented Australian artist of the 21st Century, and the Gods of creativity must have chosen for him to be born with the genuine surname Perfect. He is to the Australian Arts what Noel Coward was to Britain in the thirties…..we need to cherish that talent, and never take it for granted. Why does he do so many things? Because he can!

The Reluctant Shopper

By Bruce Hoogendoorn. Long Run Theatre Productions. Director: Bruce Hoogendoorn. Courtyard Studio, Canberra, 19–29 June 2013.

The Reluctant Shopper is built primarily on fine comedic writing. It is premised on the blackmail of big savers into spending in the local economy. Local Business Council executive Katrina obliges the smooth-talking Barry to blackmail a thrifty young man, Sam, into spending in the local shops something of the million dollars in his bank account.  Sam, of course, has no wish to spend, and the stage is set for a series of hilarious turns.

One False Move...

NICA (National Institute of Circus Arts). Co-directed by Megan Jones and Meridith Kitchen. NICA National Circus Centre, Prahran (Vic). 19 – 29 June 2013

This fast-paced circus show features NICA’s second year artists in an original performance that draws inspiration from the events and characters that inhabit the fictional world of the Film Noir genre. The title refers to a shared aspect of circus and film noir – the tension created by the fear that one false move could spell disaster.


ATA Allstar Artists Production. Choreography: Aaron Cash, Rocian Gonzalez Chavez. Musical Director: Osmar Salazar Hernandez. Lyric Theatre, QPAC, Brisbane, 19-22 June 2013; State Theatre, Sydney, June 25 – 29; The Arts Centre Gold Coast, July 3 – 6; Arts Centre, Melbourne, July 17 – 20; Crown Theatre, Perth, July 31 – Aug 3.

This was the second visit to Australia of this Cuban dance company who originally toured in 2011. If you like Glee and TV dance programs, then you will be enthralled by the pyrotechnics of a show that fused classical with hip-hop, rap and other contemporary styles.


By Oscar Wilde. Fingal O’Flahertie Productions, Bordello Theatre Kings Cross. Wed 12th - Sat 29th June, 2013

Bordello Burlesque

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