Reviews

Wicked

Music and Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz. Book by Winnie Holzman. Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire. Capitol Theatre, Sydney. Opening Night: September 25, 2014

The second time round Wicked feels more comfortable in its green skin. 

 

All the elements which make it a terrific night of musical theatre remain. 

 

The Lion King

Music & Lyrics: Elton John & Tim Rice. Additional Music & Lyrics: Lebo M, Mark Mancina, Jay Rifkin, Julie Taymor, Hans Zimmer Disney Production. Lyric Theatre, QPAC, Brisbane from 26 September 2014

The Lion King has finally arrived in Brisbane with the largest box-office advance in the history of the Lyric Theatre and theatregoers last night were not disappointed. This salad bowl of theatrical magic overwhelms with its vision and deserves every accolade it has ever received.

 

Songs From Stage & Screen

Directed by Ben Francis. The Burnside Ballroom. October 1, 2014

15 year old director, Ben Francis, of Promise Adelaide (a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting Youth Theatre & Performing Arts in South Australia) is to be commended for putting together a lively and warm-hearted revue in honour of Pink Ribbon Day, proceeds of which were donated to Breast Cancer research. 

Point and Shoot – A New Musical

Book & Lyrics by Tyler Jacob Jones, Music by Robert Woods. Melbourne Fringe Festival. Revolt Melbourne Artspace, Elizabeth Street, Kensington (VIC). 30 September to 4 October 2014

Four multi-tasking, multi-talented actors play fifty-four characters and a dozen musical instruments, sing one clever, witty song after another, and (good grief!) tell a comedic, satirical story about the film industry!  This highly entertaining show has won awards and already been reviewed for Stage Whispers by Kimberly Shaw in another city.  Kimberly said the show is ‘hilariously funny and extremely clever’.  Correct.  

LEFT

Long Answers to Simple Questions. Writer/Director/Performer: Tom Davis. The Melba Spiegeltent, Circus Oz, Collingwood. September 17 - 28, 2014

LEFT is extraordinary physical theatre with heart. The exemplary skill, focus, commitment and ensemble work of every performer builds a living metaphor of community. They demonstrate trust, risk, and the spirit of circus which pushes boundaries, shares pleasure in the achievement of the almost impossible and generates audience inclusion.

HMS Pinafore

By Gilbert and Sullivan. Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Sydney. Smith Auditorium Lyric Theatre. September 26 - October 4, 2014.

HMS Pinafore is amongst my G & S personal favourites. It’s a lean, pacy satirical confection set aboard a British naval ship, in which the Captain’s daughter falls in love with a sailor, rejecting the advances of the First Lord of the Admiralty, if you haven’t caught it in the last 135 or so years.

The Pearl Fishers

By Georges Bizet. Libretto: Eugène Cormon and Michel Carré. Melbourne Opera. Director: High Halliday. Musical Director: Richard Divall. Athenaeum Theatre, Melbourne: September 19 - 30, 2014. Alexander Theatre – Monash University: October 4, 2014.

The Pearl Fishers is not one of the more popular operas, but it does include the best known operatic duet and two of the best arias in the French repertoire. In between is not so exciting.

Angry Sexx

By Rachel Perks. Fringe Hub, Upstairs at Errol’s, North Melbourne. 27, 28 & 30 September, 1-4 October 2014.

Two 20-something BFFs hang out, talk about sex, listen to music, dance, listen to talk radio, talk about sex.  Catherine (Rachel Perks, who’s also the writer) sits up straight and prim. Cybell (Artemis Ioannides) wriggles her arse at the audience.

Marlin

By Damien Millar. Arena Theatre Company and Melbourne Theatre Company. Southbank Theatre, The Lawler. September 25 to 11 October, 2014

Very much like a handsomely presented picture book, Marlin is a series of stunning images that come to life on stage through the stylish design of Marg Horwell.  It is the story of a grandfather and granddaughter working together to save the life of a Marlin and navigate the difficulties and dangers they encounter at sea in a small boat. 

 

The Addams Family

By Andrew Lippa, Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. OCPAC (Vic). Director: Connor Crawford. Musical Director: Daniel Donovan. Choreographer: Mandy Vugler. Middleton Theatre, Camberwell Boys Grammar. September 27 - October 4, 2014

How many amateur music theatre companies are there in Melbourne? In the past week I have encountered two more I didn’t realise existed. They wanted Stage Whispers to review their work, and they were both excellent.

 

To keep up with the latest news and reviews at Stage Whispers, click here to like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.