Here’s the latest news in the Weekly Wrap!
NEW SOUTH WALES
Capitol Theatre: Jersey Boys
Sydney Lyric Theatre: The Book of Mormon
Sydney Opera House: Evita
Hayes Theatre: Evie May: A Tivoli Story
QPAC Lyric Theatre: Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
Festival Theatre: Mamma Mia!
Comedy Theatre: Madiba
Chapel off Chapel: NINE
Crown Theatre: Aladdin
WHAT’S HAPPENING AROUND AUSTRALIAN THEATRES?
Opening Night: Madiba
Thursday, October 4th saw Madiba, the musical of the life and influence of Nelson Mandela open at Melbourne’s Comedy Theatre. Led by Perci Moeketsi, who played Mandela himself, Moeketsi brought the right mix of wisdom and kindness to the role and made the transition across over 50 years of history both compelling and believable.
The full review can be found at http://www.theatrepeople.
Madiba the Musical is now playing at the Comedy Theatre in Melbourne’s East End Theatre District, ahead of a national tour.
For more information and tickets: https://madibamusical.com.au/
Opening Night: Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
On Friday, September 28th, QPAC’s Lyric Theatre came alive with the razzle dazzle opening night of hit Australian musical Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Tony Sheldon (Bernadette), David Harris (Tick) and Euan Doidge (Felicia) portray three performers on the adventure of a life time as they travel from Sydney to Alice Springs. Ray Meagher is portraying Bob in Brisbane and opening night saw Oliver De Los Santos play the role of Tick’s son Benji.
Priscilla runs until November 4th with tickets available from https://www.qpac.com.au/
Opening Night: Mamma Mia!
The season runs until November 18th with tickets available from https://www.bass.net.au/events/mamma-mia/
2019 Season Announcement: Hayes Theatre
Wednesday, October 3rd saw Sydney’s Hayes Theatre announce their 2019 season of musicals. The first cab off the rank is Spamalot which commences on March 6th with a cast lineup including Marty Alix, Blake Appelqvist, Cramer Cain, Rob Johnson, Josie Lane, Aaron Tsindos, Jane Watt and Megan Wilding.
Lovingly ripped off from the classic film comedy Monty Python and the Holy Grail, SPAMALOT re-tells the legend of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Guided by the fabulous belting diva The Lady of the Lake, the knights battle their way past various cows, killer rabbits, and French people in pursuit of claiming the legendary Grail.
The second musical of the 2019 season is the Australian premiere of American Psycho which opens on May 10. This new musical tells the story of Patrick Bateman, a young, handsome and wealthy investment banker living in the epicentre of excess: Manhattan, NYC, during the Wall Street Boom of the late 1980s.
July 19th sees the commencement of Catch Me If You Can. Seeking fame and fortune, precocious teenager, Frank Abignale, Jr., runs away from home to begin an unforgettable adventure. With nothing more than his boyish charm, a big imagination and millions of dollars in forged checks, Frank successfully poses as a pilot, a doctor and a lawyer – living the high life and winning the girl of his dreams. When Frank’s lies catch the attention of FBI agent, Carl Hanratty, though, Carl pursues Frank across the country to make him pay for his crimes.
Rounding out the 2019 season is the musical comedy, H.M.S. Pinafore starring Thomas Campbell and Andy Dexterity.
Aboard the ship H.M.S. Pinafore, the captain’s daughter, Josephine has fallen in love with a lowly sailor, Ralph Rackstraw, despite her father’s plan to marry her to the First Lord of the Admiralty, Sir Joseph Porter. As the lovers lament their predicament and plan their escape, a surprise disclosure from an unlikely quarter shows that not all is at it seems.
Cast Announcement: Aeneas
Aeneas, the story of life and death, love and war, displacement and homecoming will play at Melbourne’s Recital Centre for one night only. Based on Virgil’s ancient Roman epic, The Aeneid, AENEAS takes a fresh look at this Greek tragedy, adopting its universal and enduring themes for a modern audience.
The cast and crew include Zoy Frangos as Aeneas, Akina Edmonds as Dido, Olivia Charalambous as Juno, Elisa Colla as Venus, Madeleine Nicole Hale as Composer/Producer, James Mustafa as the Musical Director/Arranger and Lauren McKenna as the Artistic Director.
Tickets are $10.00 and can be purchased from https://www.
Cast Announcement: Muriel’s Wedding
Making her professional debut, Natalie Abbott who hails from the South Coast of NSW will portray the iconic title role of Muriel Heslop when the show opens at Her Majesty’s Theatre in Melbourne from March 2019 before returning to Sydney’s Lyric Theatre in June 2019. Joining her as Muriel’s onstage bestie Rhonda will be Elizabeth Esguerra. A graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts.
Tickets and further information are available from https://
Cast Announcement: West Side Story
The principal cast for the upcoming Opera Australia production of West Side Story has been announced ahead of 2019 seasons in Melbourne and Sydney. The cast are Todd Jacobsson (Book Of Mormon) as Tony, Sophie Salvesani as Maria, Chloe Zuel (Beautiful, Les Miserables) as Anita, Noah Mullins as Riff, and Lyndon Watts (Aladdin) as Bernardo.
Tickets and further information can be found at https://westsidestory.com.
2018 Rob Guest Endowment Awards: Finalists Announced
Monday, October 1st saw the semi finals of the 2018 Rob Guest Endowment Awards take place at Melbourne’s Her Majestys Theatre with thr 6 finalists announced shortly after. Congratulations to Annie Aitken, Joel Granger, Todd Jacobsson, Courtney Monsma, Ashleigh Rubenach and Lyndon Watts.
Monday also marked 10 years since Rob Guest, the man who the competition honours passed away.
Aladdin Celebrates 800 Shows and a Lifetime Achievement Award
Congratulations to the Australian company of Aladdin who on September 27th celebrated their 800th show. Aladdin is currently showing in Perth.
The team at Theatre People also congratulate George Henare on his 2018 Equity NZ lifetime achievement award. Henare has portrayed The Sultan in Aladdin for 803 of 805 shows. He will be missed after recently finishing up with the Australian Company.
Engagement: Lauren McKenna
Congratulations to Lauren McKenna and her fiance Carl on their engagement on Wednesday, October 3rd. Lauren walked into the Alex Theatre in St Kilda for what she thought was an audition only to see Carl get down on one knee in front of her.
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
AIS Arena: Grease- The Arena Experience (October 12th)
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
AIS Arena: Grease – The Arena Experience (October 14th)
King Kong opens on Broadway
Congratulations to the company of King Kong who commenced previews on Friday on Broadway. King Kong is produced by Australian Company Global Creatures and features songs written by Eddie Perfect.
Tickets and Further information can be found at http://kingkongbroadway.com
USA based Australian performer Antoniette Iesue (Grease) made her USA acting debut in the second episode of season 3 of The Good Place.
Congratulations to Robbie Smith on his casting in Bromance: The Dudesical which will play at The Other Palace on October 16th. Tickets can be purchased from https://www.