Lightly comedic thriller North By Northwest looks glossy and grand in the larger space of the State Theatre in Melbourne.
World premiere musical Butch Masters: Man of Destiny brings affordable theatre to Midsumma 2016. Talented songwriter Jamie Burgess has managed the impressive feat of penning the book, music and lyrics for this new, full-length musical. Burgess also took on musical director duties, and laid down the recorded instrumental backing tracks for the performances.
Completely captivating and refreshingly unpredictable, Meow Meow’s Little Mermaid is an immersive and highly theatrical cabaret.
Nurtured and delivered by two state theatre companies, whose core business is straight plays, the surprise in the success of Ladies in Black is not so much that this happened at all but that it does not happen more often. Overseas, the subsidised or nonprofit theatre realm is often a melting pot for new music theatre work. Following this pattern, Ladies in Black should now be picked up by some lucky producer for a healthy commercial run. Fingers crossed that this will turn out to be the well-deserved outcome in this case.
The final performance of the current London season at Sadler’s Wells sees Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty in excellent shape for its coming UK and world tour.
Spectacular dancing enlivens evergreen chestnut Guys and Dolls in this solid new production.
Fanny Brice may sing the song but it is Sheridan Smith who is the greatest star, leading a long overdue, sassy revival of Broadway classic Funny Girl.
Blessed with three excellent lead singers, this revival of Jonathan Kent’s 2006 production lands all the thrills of Puccini’s magnificent classic.
What appears, at first glance, an unusual choice for a musical proves a joyous celebration of culture, identity and acceptance.
This lovingly staged, if rather safe, new production of perennial classic Fiddler on the Roof is anchored by a sterling performance from Australia’s unchallenged Leading Man of the stage, Anthony Warlow.
World premieres abounded, boutique musicals thrived and revivals continued arriving in the 2015 year of musical theatre. Melbourne’s music theatre year began with two large-scale productions that both played for many months.
Bathing nostalgia in the warmest possible glow, Georgy Girl is a rose coloured trip down memory lane, with exceptionally engaging performances and glorious harmonies being two of the chief attractions.
While the show as a whole may be losing some of its impact with each return visit, this season serves to provide a showcase for many emerging talents. The proliferation of performing arts training courses provides a ready supply of highly qualified triple threats. With the dancing still at a very high level, this is the best singing I have ever heard in the show. Musical director Paul White has imbued the ensemble singing with the tightest dynamics heard on this stage since Wicked, and the featured roles are none too shabby either.
He may be a week early, but Santa has delivered the music theatre revival we have all been waiting for. Attractive designs, intelligent, respectful direction and a knockout cast combine to create the freshness and excitement that must have been felt when The Sound of Music first premiered back in 1959.
Concerts and boutique productions flourished, a modern opera premiere swept its categories in the Helpmann Awards and a host visiting stars graced our stages in the 2015 year of opera.
Played straight and true, characterful comedy The Marriage of Figaro is all the funnier.
Listening to the rapturous music and watching the comic complications crescendo, Sir David McVicar’s authentic production allows the genius of Mozart and librettist da Ponte to be fully appreciated for the pure brilliance of its simplicity and elegance. The second in McVicar’s Mozart-da Ponte trilogy of new productions for Opera Australia, The Marriage of Figaro is gentler than the darkly dramatic Don Giovanni but just as intriguing and affecting.
Victorian Opera’s audience showed great faith in the polish, variety and flair of the company by filling Hamer Hall for an evening where more than half the program consisted of new compositions sung by young singers. That faith was rewarded with a unique and fascinating evening, bringing the eclectic, entertaining 2015 season to a close.
The cream of Australian music theatre talent shine in this most intelligently adult of Broadway musicals… Having raised the bar for boutique musical presentations with their inaugural season of Passion in 2014, Life Like Company works their magic again with City of Angels, miraculously providing fully realised staging, smoking hot band and stellar cast, all for a season of a scant four days.
Glorious music is a clear highlight of CitiOpera’s new production of La Cenerentola, with a large orchestra and excellent singers bringing Rossini’s sparkling score to life.
In an unforgettable evening of song and story, Audra McDonald brought her once-in-a-lifetime voice to Melbourne last night.
McDonald’s modesty was immediately apparent when the evening began without an obligatory showreel of career highlights. There was no talk of Tony Awards or television, just love of family, support of causes and enthusiasm for new music theatre composers.