Adding an Australian twist!
Lock up your daughters and your jewellery! The Production Company’s The Pirates of Penzance opens next week for a limited run. But Avast! This version of Pirates has a new edge . . .
In Australia, we get a lot of ‘carbon-copy’ musicals. Often successful shows are lifted straight from the original (or revival) Broadway or West End season and then transplanted onto an Australian tour. Now, I’m not saying this is a bad thing because it often allows our audiences to experience world-class direction, choreography and set design. But while this may be some of the best in the world, that doesn’t mean it is going to translate to Australian audiences.
And if we are true to the idea of looking at audiences and then crafting a show that will thrill them, enthral them and have them coming back for more, then maybe these shows should have an Australian creative team that knows the market?
Of course, there are many shows that are an exception to this rule, such as Wicked, Grease and Rock of Ages. But The Production Company is taking a different approach with their production of The Pirates of Penzance.
When The Pirates of Penzance was first staged in Australia, the American creative teams were flown out to Australia to show us how these shows were meant to be directed. But we now have a huge, successful and growing creative industry in Australia. In fact look at the creative team for The Pirates of Penzance. The fabulous Matthew Frank and Dean Bryant are at the helm of this project as Musical Director and Director, respectively, accompanied by choreographer Andrew Hallsworth, Oscar Award-winning costume designer Tim Chappel with Owen Phillips, set designer Dale Ferguson and lighting by Gavan Swift.
These professionals all have extensive experience working with the Australian market (as well as some pretty impressive work internationally), so they should know a lot about Australian theatre-goers. And you know what that means . . . the production of a show that resonates strongly with Australian audiences!
God knows that the Australian production of A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum was an enormous success and it was crafted by an Australian creative team. So if that production resonated with audiences due to its relevance for Australian audiences, then this production should be phenomenal.
But if an Australian creative team isn’t enough for you, check out the stellar cast and then get yourself some tickets before they set sail!
The Production Company’s The Pirates of Penzance is starring Adam Murphy as the swashbuckling Pirate King, Claire Lyon as Mabel, Gareth Keegan as the lovestruck Frederick and Genevieve Lemon as Ruth with Wayne Scott Kermond and Brent Hill as Major-General Stanley and the Sergeant of Police.
The limited season only runs from October 30 to November 3. To book tickets visit artscentremelbourne.com.au
And do it quickly . . . You want to be on the good side of these looting pirates (even though they aren’t that fiercesome!).