NEW SOUTH WALES
Capitol Theatre: School of Rock
Sydney Lyric Theatre: War Horse
Sydney Opera House- Joan Sutherland Theatre: Carmen
Sydney Opera House- Studio: SIX
Comedy Theatre: Come From Away
Her Majesty’s Theatre: Shrek
Princess Theatre: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Regent Theatre: Billy Elliot
WHAT’S HAPPENING AROUND AUSTRALIAN THEATRES
Season Announcement: West Side Story
Fresh from sell-out seasons around the world in 2019, the smash hit international production of West Side Story opens at Brisbane’s QPAC on July 24th, 2020.
An undisputed and timeless masterpiece, West Side Story features an unforgettable score and songs that have been adored for generations, including “Maria”, “Tonight”, “Somewhere”, “America” and “I Feel Pretty”. This iconic dance musical remains one of the most poignant stage works of the 20th century.
Tickets are available from https://www.qpac.com.au/event/west_side_story_20/
Cast to be announced at a later date. Here is a video to wet your tastebuds
Cast Announcement: The Secret Garden
Monday, February 24th saw the adult cast announced for John Frost and Opera Australia’s The Secret Garden. Joining the previously announced Anthony Warlow who will play Archibald Craven will be Georgina Hobson (Ragtime, West Side Story) as Lily, Rob McDougall (Les Miserables, Assassins) as Dr Neville Craven, Alinta Chidzey (Chicago, A Little Night Music) as Martha, Rodney Dobson (Dream Lover, Les Miserables) as Ben Weatherstaff, Nigel Huckle (Thoroughly Modern Millie, Hello Dolly!) as Dickson, Rowena Wallace (Sons & Daughters) as Mrs Medlock, Genevieve Kingsford (The Light in the Piazza, Brigadoon) as Rose, Glenn Hill (Jersey Boys, Hello Dolly!) as Captain Albert Lennox, Jordan Angelides (Catch Me If You Can, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) as Lieutenant Shaw, Andy Conaghan (Shrek, Les Miserables) as Lieutenant Wright, Grace Driscoll (Professional Debut) as Ayah, Des Flanagan (The Beautiful Game, West Side Story) as William/ Major Shelley, Matt Heyward (Billy Elliot, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder) as a Swing/ Dance Captain, Zoe Ioannou (The Bridges of Madison County, The Wizard of Oz) as a Swing, Matilda Moran (Les Miserables, Merrily We Roll Along) as Alice, Bronwyn Mulcahy (Man of La Mancha, Cats) as Claire/ Mrs Winthrop, Adam Noviello (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) as Timothy, Danielle O’Malley (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, First Date) as a Swing, David Ouch (Muriel’s Wedding, Anything Goes) as Fakir, James Shaw (Jekyll and Hyde, Titanic) as Major Holmes, Alec Steedman (Once, Twelfth Night) as a Swing and Erica Wild (Stepping Out) as Betsy/ Jane/ Mrs Shelley.
The Secret Garden will begin previews at Sydney’s Lyric Theatre on August 2nd, 2020 with ticketing information and further details available from https://secretgardenmusical.com.au/
Cast Announcement: 9 to 5 Ensemble
Wednesday, February 26th saw the announcement of the Ensemble for the Australian production of Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5. Joining Caroline O’Connor, Marina Prior, Samantha Dodemaide and Erin Clare on stage will be Ana Maria Belo (In the Heights, Miracle City) as Margaret/ Ensemble , Amy Berrisford (Chicago, CATS) as Dance Captain/ Swing, Zoe Coppinger (Muriel’s Wedding, Fiddler on the Roof) as Missy/ Ensemble, Mia Dabkowski- Chandler (Jersey Boys, Aladdin) as Kathy/ Ensemble, Josh Gates (Thoroughly Modern Millie, My Fair Lady) as Josh/ Ensemble, Ben Gillespie (Singin’ in the Rain, Aladdin) as Ensemble, Emma Hawthorne (Kiss Me Kate, Dr Zhivago) as a Swing, Matthew Jenson (West Side Story, Aladdin) as Assistant Dance Captain/ Ensemble, Jay Johns (Professional Debut) as Bob/ Ensemble, Ethan Jones (Pirates of Penzance, Grease: The Arena Spectacular) as Joe/ Ensemble, Ariana Mazzeo (West Side Story) as Maria/ Ensemble, Joe Meldrum (Chicago, Curtains) as a Swing, Jordanna Morandin (Music Theatre Debut) as Ensemble, Josh Mulheran (Jersey Boys, The Book of Mormon) as Dick/ Ensemble, Tom New (Bare: The Musical) as a Swing, Matthew Prime (Thoroughly Modern Millie, Jersey Boys) as Dwayne/ Ensemble, Melissa Russo (Funny Girl in Concert, Fangirls) as Ensemble and Glaston Toft (Jersey Boys, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) as Tinsworthy/ Ensemble.
9 TO 5 will play at the Sydney Lyric Theatre from 19 April followed by a season at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Melbourne from 25 July. Further details can be found at https://9to5themusical.com.au/
Cast Announcement: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Today (Wednesday, February 26th) will see the six new adult cast members of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child take the stage for the first time. They are: Michael Whalley (Muriel’s Wedding, An Officer and a Gentleman) as Ron Weasley and Nyx Calder (Lord of the Flies) as Scorpius Malfoy and joining the ensemble are Lucy Ansell (Tusk Tusk), Hannah Fredericksen (Dream Lover, Assassins), Helen Howard ( The Importance of Being Ernest) and Naomi Rukavina (Going Down). Current cast members Gillian Cosgriff and Jessica Vickers graduating into the roles of Delphi Diggory and Moaning Myrtle respectively.
Further information about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child can be found at https://www.harrypottertheplay.com/au/
Cast Announcement: There’s Something About Music
This romcom movie mixtape celebrates the films that defined the genre and the soundtracks we fell head-over-heels for, including There’s Something About Mary, Notting Hill, My Best Friend’s Wedding, 10 Things I Hate About You, Pretty Woman, Jerry Maguire, Sleepless in Seattle, The Bodyguard and more.
Fall in love all over again with the world’s most-enduring romantic comedy soundtracks, brought to life by a dream cast of Australian theatre sweethearts including Luke Kennedy (The Voice Australia, Swing on This), Lucy Maunder (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda), Naomi Price (Christmas Actually, Sweet Charity) and Mat Verevis (Beautiful: The Carole King Musical).
Featuring hit songs by Elvis Costello, Aerosmith, Whitney Houston, Roy Orbison, Dionne Warwick, Celine Dion, Dolly Parton, Bruce Springsteen and more, There’s Something About Music will sweep you off your feet and carry you dancing down memory lane.
Ticketing details can be found at https://brisbanepowerhouse.org/whats-on/event/theres-something-about-music/
Relaxed Performance: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
The 2020 production of Bonnie Lythgoe’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs will host a Relaxed Performance on Wednesday 8 July at 11am at the Sydney Coliseum Theatre. Relaxed Performances are specifically designed to welcome individuals and families that may otherwise be unable to experience live theatre due to conditions including but not limited to Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Sensitivity and Epilepsy.
Further information about the show and ticketing information head to https://www.ozpanto.com/shows/snow-white-and-the-seven-dwarfs/
Opening Night: Shrek
Friday, February 19th saw Her Majesty’s Theatre in Melbourne turn green as the shrektacular production of Shrek roared onto the stage. Audiences were treated to an excellent night of theatre as Ben Mingay (Shrek), Lucy Durack (Princess Fiona), Nat Jobe (Donkey), Todd McKenney (Lord Farquaad) and Denise Devlin (Dragon) led a highly energetic, all singing and dancing cast of fairytale characters throughout the heart warming story.
A full review can be read at https://www.theatrepeople.com.au/shrek-melbourne-review/
Shrek is currently playing at Her Majesty’s Theatre before moving to Brisbane later this year. Information can be found at https://shrekthemusical.com.au/
Opening Night: Billy Elliot
High levels of Electricity were felt as audience members danced into Melbourne’s Regent Theatre on Saturday, February 22nd ahead of the opening night of Billy Elliot. Portraying the role of Billy Elliot for the evening was 11 year old River Mardesic. Audiences were treated to a tough, passionate, sensitive and cheeky portrayal of Billy, the young boy who just wants to dance. In what is Mardesic’s professional debut, if audience reactions are anything to go by, it won’t be his last production.
A full review can be read at https://www.theatrepeople.com.au/billy-elliot-the-musical-melbourne-review/
Billy Elliot will play at the Regent Theatre until April 19th with tickets available at https://billyelliotthemusical.com.au/tour/melbourne/
2019 Equity Lifetime Achievement Award
On Sunday, February 23rd the Equity Foundation honoured two trailblazing Indigenous performers who have led by example and paved the way for the next generation to follow in their footsteps.Thank you to all who attended the ceremony at the Opera House to honour Lillian Crombie and the late Ningali Lawford-Wolf, the joint recipients of the Equity Lifetime Achievement Award.
Show Milestone: School of Rock Celebrates 400 Shows
Congratulations to the company of School of Rock on 400 shows! The milestone was reached this week during the Sydney season. School of Rock closes in Sydney on March 1st ahead of a short season in Adelaide. Season details can be found at https://au.schoolofrockthemusical.com/
Gypsy Cloak: Gypsy Cloak ceremony takes place in Melbourne
This week saw the changeover of the Gypsy Cloak. A ceremony which saw Chicago‘s Hayley Martin hand the cloak to dear friend and cast member of Shrek, Suzanne Steele took place at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Melbourne.
Congratulations to the nominees and winners of the Tasmanian Theatre Awards which took place at Wrest Point, Hobart on Saturday, February 22nd. Award regulars Encore claimed 12 awards overall including 8 awards for their production of We Will Rock You. Encore’s other production, Strictly Ballroom won 4 awards.
Engagement: Claire Lyon
Congratulations to Claire Lyon (Phantom of the Opera, Thoroughly Modern Millie) on her engagement to fiance Dave McLaughlin. Lyon is holidaying in Australia before the commencement of The Phantom of the Opera‘s Seoul season on March 14th, 2020.
Claire, we wish you and Dave all the best !
NEW SOUTH WALES
Darlinghurst Theatre: A Chorus Line (March 13th)
Hayes Theatre: The Bridges of Madison County (March 6th)
QPAC Lyric Theatre: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (March 18th)
Adelaide Festival Theatre: School of Rock (March 20th)
NEW SOUTH WALES
Capitol Theatre: School of Rock (March 1st)
Sydney Lyric Theatre: War Horse (March 15th)
Sydney Opera House- Studio: SIX (March 5th)
Comedy Theatre: Come From Away (March 21st)