Assassins Return Season at Opera House

Assassins Return Season at Opera House

The Sydney Opera House has announced that the Hayes Theatre Co’s critically acclaimed production of the darkly entertaining, revue-style musical Assassins will play in the Playhouse in June 2018, starring David Campbell. 

Set in a fairground shooting gallery, the Tony Award-winning Assassins tells the story of nine misfit Americans who killed (or planned to kill) their President-of-the-day. Composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim (West Side Story, Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods) combines with John Weidman’s book, exploring the disillusionment associated with patriotic idealism. Deploying a dose of absurd humour and a century of musical pastiche, Assassins dissects the motivations of some of history’s most notorious criminals. 

Continuing their roles from the Hayes Theatre Co season, David Campbell (Dream Lover) appears as Lincoln’s assassin, John Wilkes Booth alongside Connor Crawford (The Sound of Music, City of Angels), Hannah Fredericksen (Dream Lover, Heathers), Kate Cole (Ladies in Black, Sweet Charity), Bobby Fox (Ladies in Black, High Society, Blood Brothers), Jason Winston (formerly known as Jason Kos) (Cabaret, Miracle City), Rob McDougall (Les Misérables), and Justin Smith (The Detective’s Handbook, Billy Elliott). Maxwell Simon reprises his role of The Balladeer/Lee Harvey Oswald.

Sydney Opera House Head of Contemporary Performance, Olivia Ansell says, “This startlingly bold production of Assassins grabs you with its immediacy, hilarity and timeliness. It was considered controversial when it premiered off-Broadway in 1990, but the times have caught up with it. Assassins is a smart musical that contemporary audiences will love. Just as they’ve enjoyed the opportunity to see other Australian music theatre productions by independent promoters that transferred to the Opera House from the highly-respected Hayes Theatre Co, like Sweet Charity (2015) and Heathers (2016).” 

Director Dean Bryant (Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Sweet Charity, Little Shop of Horrors) says, “Assassins is a wry celebration and indictment of a culture that adores their guns. A documentary, black comedy, revue and tour through a hundred years of popular music. Assassins couldn’t be more right for Australia now when our newsfeeds are full of the sad impact of US gun violence and the whims of the incumbent President.” 

The creative team is completed by Helpmann Award-winning Choreographer Andrew Hallsworth (Anything Goes, Sweet Charity, Muriel’s Wedding), Musical Director Andrew Worboys (Sweet Charity and Little Shop of Horrors), Costume & Set Designer Alicia Clements (After Dinner, Ivanov), and Ross Graham (Little Shop of Horrors, Sweet Charity) and Nick Walker on light and sound design respectively.

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