Reviews

West End to Broadway ... in the Reservoir

The Movie Musicals. Brisbane's Underground Opera House. The Spring Hill Reservoir. February 10-26, 2017. On tour around Queensland

Underground Opera Company returns to Brisbane in the acoustic-rich caverns of the one of Brisbane's famous landmarks, this time with a selection of well-known favourites from movie musicals of the past and present. Hosted by the animated Bruce Edwards both at the entrance and on the surround-sound stage, and superbly accompanied by Brendan Murtagh at the piano, this is an intimate night of mainstream entertainment and a showcase of excellent vocal talent and theatrical versatility.

Visiting Mr Green

By Jeff Baron. Pymble Players. February 15 – March 11, 2017

This delightful two-hander has been produced around the world since 1996. It’s tender yet thought provoking, and its messages lose none of their impact despite the twenty years of ‘progress’ since it was first performed.

The Red Detachment of Women

National Ballet of China.As Part of Asia Topa Festival. State Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne. February 15 – 18, 2017.

I don’t know why Melbourne’s newest cultural festival is Asia Topa and not the more memorable Asia Topia, but the organisers have presented the elite National Ballet of China as the highlight of the inaugural festival, and it’s a marvellous chance to experience even more cultural diversity in Melbourne.

The Flick

By Annie Baker. Queensland Theatre / Red Stitch Actors’ Theatre. QPAC. February 10 – Mar 5, 2017

Annie Baker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Flick comes to life by Queensland Theatre in association with Queensland Performing Arts Centre and a Red Stitch Actors’ Theatre. Described by Artistic Director Sam Strong as ‘a contemporary Chekhov’ – this production exposes the surprising tenderness and comedy in the everyday.

The Girl From Oz

Courtney Act. Salon Perdu Spiegeltent, The Pleasure Garden, Fringe World, Northbridge, WA. Feb 14-19, 2017

Courtney Act’s superb cabaret The Girl From Oz is a celebration of the fact 'there is no place like home’, a wonderful collection of Australian songs - a love letter to Australia after seven years in the US.

Stunningly beautiful and gorgeously frocked, Courtney sings up a storm as she performs songs made famous by Olivia Newton-John, Sia, ACDC and of course ‘our’ Kylie.

Cat FM

The Black Flamingo, The Pleasure Garden, Fringe World, Northbridge, WA. Feb 14-19, 2017

Cat FM is a radio station for cats, by cats. Patrons of this production become a feline studio audience.

Set in a world where a whole lot of things are going on (zombies and evil equines being just part of the problem), we follow our radio host cats played by Alice Winn and Chris Turner, as they present their daily show. This duo work beautifully together, with wonderful synchronicity.

Interspersed with some clever and witty sketch comedy - this bizarre little show has plenty of appeal.

Suitable for humans and free for cats.

Disgraceful Cougars

Fringe World. Salon Perdu Spiegeltent, The Pleasure Garden, Fringe World, Northbridge, WA. Feb 15-19, 2017

In Disgraceful Cougars, cabaret diva Disgraceful Kelly joins drag star Cougar Morrison, in a madcap romp that keeps the audience on their toes.

Playfully carefree, and slightly manic, this carefully disorganised cabaret sees the unlikely pairing discussing auditions, their love-lives, botox and just why Disgraceful Kelly is not on the poster. Gorgeously opposed, she is curves and old school-glamour while he rocks the worlds tiniest hot-pants.

One Hit Wanda, Karaoke Killer

Directed by Andrew Baker and Cinzia Lee.Fringe World. Ace’s Cabaret, Downstairs at the Maj, His Majesty’s Theatre, Perth, WA. Feb 14-18, 2017

It makes complete sense that professional assassins have a penchant for karaoke, and of course their specialty would be One Hit Wonders. This is the premise for One Hit Wanda, performed by Cinzia Lee.

The beautifully attired Wanda regales the audience with her exploits as a paid killer, between expertly performing one hit wonders with style.

Fellow assassins should be warned. If Wanda spots you in the audience, she may drag you onto the stage to perform by her side - just don’t refuse or stuff it up. The woman is a professional hit-woman after all.

The Mystery of Love & Sex

By Bathsheba Doran. Darlinghurst Theatre Company. Eternity Playhouse. Feb 10 – Mar 12, 2017

While stories of gay people coming out to the world are no longer new, American writer Bathsheba Doran weaves here a heartfelt exploration of two young friends coming out to themselves. 

Charlotte is blessed with loving, liberal-minded parents in Howard, a Jewish New Yorker who writes detective novels and seeks clarity in all things human, and Lucinda, a Southern belle turned spirited rebel.  Nicholas Papademetriou and Deborah Galanos sidestep obvious clichés as the parents and embody considerable detail of warmth and humour.

Tel LA Novela

FringeWord. Directed by Zac Gower. Downstairs at the Maj, His Majesty’s Theatre, Perth WA. Feb 14-18, 2017

Zac Gower enchants his audience with his story of growing up in a Mexican restaurant, with dreams of Hollywood, his journey to LA and his search for love - all told in the style of a Telenovela. A Latin-American cabaret with a healthy dose of Australian realism.

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