Reviews

Into the Woods

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Book by James Lapine. Bloom Productions. Directed by Jordan Vassallo. Musical Direction by Peter Hayward. Concourse Concert Hall, Chatswood. Mar 21 – 23, 2019

This was a spectacular debut for a new theatre company, using the unusual surroundings of a concert hall to present this musical with imagination. From the ceiling dropped the forest, from the balcony dropped Rapunzel’s hair and beautiful use of shadows effected a most satisfying giant. Balancing the sound of the fine orchestra on stage with the cast took a little time to settle in but was soon resolved.

A View from the Bridge

By Arthur Miller. Melbourne Theatre Company. Directed by Iain Sinclair. The Sumner Theatre, 140 Southbank Blvd, Southbank. 9 March — 18 April, 2019.

The incisive social realism of Arthur Miller’s writing is well fired up in this text. Here Miller focuses his attention on the inner workings of Italian-American post-war immigration. Eddie (Steve Bastoni), Beatrice (Daniela Farinacci) and Catherine (Zoe Terakes) appear as a typical successful immigrant family. Despite their struggles, they create a humble but loving home and are able to offer Catherine opportunities for a better life. However, as the story unfolds, we discover that their family dynamics harbour some dark secrets.

Every Brilliant Thing

By Duncan Macmillan with Jonny Donahoe. Starring Kate Mulvany. Belvoir St Theatre, Sydney. Directed by Kate Champion. March 8-31, 2019

A one-woman play dealing with depression and suicide doesn’t sound like fun. But Every Brilliant Thing is one of the most entertaining - and touching - solo performances in years. Thanks, in no small part, to the performance from Kate Mulvany.

The Choir of Man

The Studio, Sydney Opera House. Mar 20 – Apr 7, 2019

A blast! A rage! A ball! Whatever idiomatic superlative you use, it probably isn’t enough to describe the vibe and energy of the nine cheeky, gifted English ‘lads’ who are The Choir of Man. Arunaway hit at the Edinburgh Festival in 2017, and fresh from the 2019 Adelaide Fringe festival, the boys have hit NSW running – and dancing and singing – in a rousing production that makes the spirit soar.

The Book Of Mormon

Book, Music & Lyrics: Trey Parker, Robert Lopez and Matt Stone. Anne Garefino, Scott Rudin, Important Musicals, John Frost Production. Director: Casey Nicholaw & Trey Parker. Music Director: David Young. Choreography: Casey Nicholaw. Lyric Theatre, QPAC, Brisbane. Opening Night 20 March 2019

After playing a year in Melbourne and a year in Sydney, The Book of Mormon is finally pushing Brisbane’s doorbell. One of the funniest musicals to come out of Broadway this century, the show is outrageous, blasphemous, rude, vulgar, and a heavenly slice of musical comedy that hilariously zips along for an exuberant two-hour ride.

Cinderella

The Australian Ballet with Orchestra Victoria. The Arts Centre, Melbourne. 19th – 28th March, 2019.

Melbourne ballet fans were ready for Graeme Murphy’s brand new ballet, an adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s The Happy Prince to open the Australian Ballet’s season this year. However, with only weeks to go, illness forced the postponement of this ballet until 2020.  Instead, Melbourne gets the chance to see this fabulous version of Alexei Ratmansky’s Cinderella

Keeping Up Appearances

By Roy Clarke. KADS. Directed by Anita Bound. KADS Town Square Theatre, Kalamunda. March 8-23, 2019.

KADS’ Keeping Up Appearances was a sell out before it even opened, with this play, based on the popular TV series, proving very popular with local audiences.

Picnic At Hanging Rock

By Laura Annawyn Shamas, based on the book by Joan Lindsay. Townsville Little Theatre. Directed by Alan Cooke. Dancenorth Theatre, cnr Stanley Street/Walker Street, Townsville. 20-23 March, 2019.

It is hard to believe that Peter Weir’s seminal film Picnic at Hanging Rock first came to our screens 44 years ago.

Now regarded as one of Australia’s classic films, it has gone on to be adapted for television, and was first adapted for stage only three years ago by Melbourne’s Malthouse Theatre in an interesting production which had five female actors play all the roles – male and female.

Glory

Phillip Adams BalletLab. Dance Massive at Temperance Hall, South Melbourne. March 19 – 23, 2019

Phillip Adams Ballet Lab presents his new show Glory for Dance Massive at Temperance Hall in South Melbourne, involving a pastiche of dance, choreography and visual art that transcends into a uniquely aesthetically disruptive art performance. Adams is a pioneering Australian based conceptual performer, previously based in New York who has performed successfully across the globe, who established Ballet Lab in 1998.

Company

By Stephen Sondheim and George Furth. WAAPA’s Third Year Musical Theatre students. Directed by Andrew Lewis, Musical Direction by Craig Dalton. Roundhouse Theatre, WAAAPA, Edith Cowan University, Mt Lawley, WA. 16-23 March, 2019

WAAPA’s Third Year Musical Theatre students present Company, in a crisp, clean and clever production that is delighting its capacity audiences.

A great looking show, it features a streamlined set by student designer Ashlea Lansford, evocative and effective lighting design by Rhys Pottinger, top notch sound design by Noah Ivulich and thoughtful costume design by Monique Doubleday - the wedding dress is especially gorgeous.

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