The 9th Australian Cabaret Showcase this week held its Grand Final event in Sydney with winners of heats from Sydney, Melbourne and Gosford invited to perform at the annual event. Eleven finalists took to the stage including NSW Central Coast winners Tamara Abbott, Adam Forsythe and Madeleine Swan. Winner of the Melbourne heat Angela Harding and from the Sydney heats Tommy Bradson, Maryann Wright, Jessica Zamprogno, Kristina McNamara, Jessica O'Donoghue and Bryce Halliday.
Judges at this year’s Grand Final included Noosa Long Weekend Festival Artistic Director Ian Mackellar, Ron Dobell of The Ron and Margaret Dobell Foundation, Artistic Director of The Ballarat Cabaret Festival Graeme Russell and Sydney theatrical agent Les Solomon. In a unanimous decision, the first place Festival Prize winner at this year’s event was awarded to Brisbaneborn Angela Harding, while the second place Showcase Prize went to Australian Institute of Music Graduate Bryce Halliday. Held at live music venue Notes in Newtown, each performer was asked to write and perform an eight minute set with interlinking dialogue.
The winner of this year’s event will receive a fully produced Australian tour of their original solo show, with an invitation to perform at some of Australia’s biggest music festivals including The Adelaide Cabaret Festival, The Melbourne Cabaret Festival, the inaugural Ballarat Cabaret Festival and The Noosa Long Weekend Festival. They will also receive a $1000 cash prize courtesy of The Ron and Margaret Dobell Foundation, a photographic and design package courtesy of Blueprint Studios and a Sydney season produced by Your Management.
The Executive Producer of the annual event, also General Manager of The New York Musical Theatre Festival Jeremy Youett said, “Our winners this year are talented new Australian performers who are both deserving of their respective win and each will now go on to tour Australia with newly developed solo shows in 2012. This year’s first place winner Angela Harding is a knockout and is an up and coming talent to watch out for in the year ahead!”