By Andrea James & Giordano Nanni. Belvoir & Ilbijerri Theatre Company (NSW). Director Isaac Drandic. 11 December, 2013– 3, January 2014

A native Nirvana revealed

The Phantom of the Opera

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber; Lyrics: Charles Hart and Richard Stilgoe; Book: Richard Stilgoe and Andrew Lloyd Webber. Redcliffe Musical Theatre (Qld). Redcliffe Cultural Centre. 13 – 22 December, 2013

The outstanding success of this popular quazi-opera is a triumph for Director/Producer, Madeleine Johns and her shrewd selection of creative partners: Musical Director, Sherree Drummond; Choreographer, Courtney Underhill; Technical Director, Bruce Noy; and Costume Manager, Barbara Bloodworth. They did this show proud.

The Importance of Being Earnest

By Oscar Wilde. Adelaide Youth Theatre. The Barr Smith Theatre, Scotch College, Carruth Road, Torrens Park. December 12-15, 2013.

Oscar Wilde’s satirical comedy, The Importance of Being Earnest is beloved by audiences even today because its wit and deliciously convoluted plot never dates. Even so, it takes skill and talent to make the most of the Wilde style and rapid-fire dialogue. Adelaide Youth Theatre is bursting with talent and the performers in the company’s short December season of Wilde’s enduring play are up to the task.

[title of show]

Music and Lyrics by Jeff Bowen. Book by Hunter Bell. Golden Apple Theatrical Productions. Spotlight Basement Theatre, Benowa (Gold Coast). Directors: Cilla Scott and Adam King. December 11th to 14th, 2013.

The best way to describe [title of show] is a unique and clever way to create a musical.

Cilla Scott and Adam King have created a fast paced theatrical experience full of laughs, vibrant performances interwoven with clever dialogue that’s “in your face” from go to whoa.

The Lion King

Based on the 1994 Disney animated film of the same name with music by Elton John and lyrics by Tim Rice, along with the musical by Hans Zimmer and choral arrangements by Lebo M. Director: Julie Taymor. Capitol Theatre, Sydney. Opening Night: December 12, 2013.

If you’ve never seen The Lion King before, the artistry of many of the scenes on the plains of Africa will dazzle you, but those having a second bite might notice a few meows have crept in amidst the roars.

Most in the opening night audience were expecting the carnival of animals to descend on the stage for the famous introductory number Circle of Life, but it was still a thrill to be amongst the throng of wild beasts.


Music: Richard Rodgers. Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein 2nd. Additional Lyrics: Richard Rodgers. Book: Howard Lindsay & Russell Crouse adapted for television by Austin Winsberg. Executive Producers: Neil Meron, Craig Zadan. Directors: Rob Ashford, Beth McCarthy-Miller. Musical Director: David Chase. Universal Television Production, Broadcast NBC 5 December 2013

When NBC aired The Sound of Music Live!, on Thursday December 5th 2013, itwas the first time in over 50 years that a television network had broadcast a live version of a Broadway musical. A cause for celebration and with the telecast pulling in nearly 20 million viewers let us hope it won’t be another 50 years before they do another one.

The Musical of Musicals: The Musical

Music and lyrics by Eric Rockwell and Joanne Bogart. Everyman Theatre, directed by Duncan Ley and Duncan Driver. Courtyard Studio, Canberra Theatre Centre. 5–21 December 2013

With amusing narration by co-director Duncan Driver and keyboard accompaniment by an uncredited musician, this creative piece compels its four cast members to sing their lines, and to dance them as well, on a set rich in visual reminders of classic musicals. The format consisted in offering the same simple story line in five different treatments that effectively pay tongue-in-cheek homage to five greats of musical theatre: Rodgers & Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and Kander & Ebb.

The Deep

Adapted for the stage from Tim Winton's book by Justin Cheek. Directed by Noriko Nishimoto. Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, Fremantle, WA. Reviewed 5 Dec, 2013. Public Season: Jan 6- Feb 1 2014

Often children’s theatre is fast and furious, flamboyant and funny. While highly entertaining and certainly amusing, The Deep is almost the antithesis of most theatre for kids - gentle and relaxed and quietly beautiful.

The Deep was first performed by Spare Parts over a decade ago, but this version is a remained and updated incarnation.

Much Ado About Nothing

By William Shakespeare. Directed by Adam Cook. Sport For Jove. Bella Vista Farm, Norman Lindsay Gallery & The Everglades Garden, 7 December, 2013 – 26 January, 2014.

It’s difficult to believe Sport For Jove has only been alive for 5 years. From it’s humble beginnings in Castle Hill’s The Rose Garden, the company has gone from strength to strength to be one of Sydney’s most important independent groups. In that short time, and with a prolific production history, the company has continued to consistently produce high quality shows again and again.

Peter Pan

Roleystone Theatre, Roleystone WA. Directed by Paul Treasure. Nov 22- Dec 7, 2013.

Usually when I review a show, I try to mention those making their first stage appearance and other relative newcomers. For Peter Pan this would be a difficult task. At least ten in this cast made their community theatre debut, while another dozen or more celebrated their second show. Of the thirty in the cast, twenty-two were under eighteen.

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