Tag: Kathleen Amarant

REVIEW: StageArt Presents A SUPER BRADY CABARET

TV’s favourite family hit the stage

By Narelle Wood

It’s a story we’re all familiar with; a woman with three girls, a man with three boys and a happy household where no problem is ever too big to solve. But A Super Brady Cabaret explores more than the wholesome, teeth-flashing, perky family, it also delves into the darker side of the Brady Bunch.

A Super Brady Cabaret

The show opens with a familiar tune and the ‘on air’ antics that ensue are all the smiley, over-enthused fun and cheese you would expect from the Brady Bunch. Then the ‘on air’ light blinks off and the ‘real’ relationship between each of the cast members comes to life.

Lauren Edwards (Carol), Paul Congdon (Mike) and their six children (Kathleen Amarant, Thomas Bradford, Sophie Weiss, Giancarlo Salamanca, Nicola Guzzardi, Dylan Licastro) are perfectly casted. Under the direction of Drew Downing, this cast form is a flawless ensemble; it was impossible to pick a favourite amongst Marcia’s overt sexuality, Bobby’s watermelon smile, Cindy’s lisp or Jan’s whining. Instead, the highlights of the show come from the onstage chemistry between cast members and their well-timed interactions, as well as some witty and unexpected moments in the script.

The storyline is tight and the songs are well suited to the era of the tv show, featuring hits such as “Islands In The Stream”, “Happy Together:, and “Keep On” made famous by the original Brady Bunch. For all the frivolity of the cabaret there are also some poignant questions that the show deals with, such as what happens to each member of the bunch when the Bradys are no longer?

It’s hard to leave A Super Brady Cabaret without feeling warm and fuzzy, with every moment having either made me smile or laugh out loud. A Super Brady Cabaret is a feel-good way to finish off your day.

Venue: Chapel off Chapel
Season: Wednesday – Saturday, 6.30pm, until 13th June
Tickets: $39 Full | $31 Conc
Bookings: chapeloffchapel.com.au

Image by Belinda Strodder

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REVIEW: Original New Musical ONCE WE WERE…

Young, fresh and brimming with potential

By Deborah Langley

It is a rare to sit in the audience of a first. First dates are exciting because you just don’t know where it’s going to lead you. With similar anticipation, the audience shuffled into The Lithuanian Club in North Melbourne to be introduced to another kind of first: the emergence of some really fresh, raw musical theatre talent that has been hiding somewhere in Melbourne.

Once We Were…. opens with a Broadway-style ensemble number where we are introduced to some very familiar characters. This contemporary musical is set in the States (which is slightly disappointing for an Australian musical – but that is a side note) with catchy, pop-inspired music, fun accessible characters and witty dialogue which would feel just as at home on any Gen Y hit TV show.

At its heart this musical explores relationships as our writers understand them. We meet the straight couple who get together during college, the gay guys who are feeling their way through coming out to parents and dealing with an eight-year age difference, and the awkward lesbian couple who prove that opposites do attract.

The creators, Rowland Braché (composer/lyricist) and Lauren Seymour (writer/co-director) have been able to combine honest tales of love with great music and perfect timing in a musical which is reminiscent of a pop-inspired Spring Awakenings.  Kim Edwards (director) has brought it to the stage with simplicity and sincerity which allows these characters to really come to life.

The ensemble cast including Jacqui Levitas, Tyson Legg, Kathleen Amarant, Callum Botica, Christian Cavallo, David Miles, Kellie-Anne Kimber, Maverick de Leon, Cassie Lee Elliget and Jack Van Staveren work brilliantly together, but easily the stand-out in both performance and story line is the lesbian couple, Cindy (Jaclyn DeVincentis) and Olivia (Candice Sweetman) whose awkward banter and unpretentious reflections were both silly and poignant, and simply a joy to watch.

Like all first runs of successful shows, Once We Were…. is brimming with potential and spotted with imperfections that need an audience to highlight. I can’t wait for the second season and feel privileged to say that I was there to witness the first….  and you should be too.

Once We Were… is playing until 2nd July at The Lithuanian Club, 45 -50 Errol Street North Melbourne. Go to www.trybooking.com/OLJ for more information or contact 0487 487667

New Contemporary Musical Opens in Melbourne: ONCE WE WERE

Supporting local theatre is always a real love affair…

How often do you find yourself wishing, after seeing that hundredth production of Rent or that latest revival of Les Miserables that  there were more innovative, original modern musicals out there?

Prepare to fall in love: Once We Were has its world premiere in Melbourne this month.

[Check out the Official Promotional Trailer]

With an exciting cast of next-gen music theatre stars, a wonderfully melodious score, and the unexpected intertwinings of a trio of modern love stories, this production is set both to scintillate and seduce you.

Once We Were boasts an original contemporary score by Melbourne composer Rowland Braché, with book and additional lyrics by writer/director Lauren Seymour.  

The story follows the romantic relationships of three couples that cross paths across time and gender to face all the funny, sexy and real challenges and heartaches of trying to make love work.

Support new theatre and make history as Once We Were opens this June: take the time to look at what love and theatre was – and what it will be.

 

Once We Were

A New Musical by Rowland Braché and Lauren Seymour

Directed by: Kim Edwards & Lauren Seymour
Music Direction by: Rowland Braché

 

Cast:

Emily: Jacqui Levitas
Martin: Christian Cavallo
Jonah: Callum Botica
Kevin: Tyson Legg
Cindy: Jaclyn DeVincentis
Olivia: Candice Sweetman
Rachel: Kathleen Amarant
Scott: David Miles
Ensemble: Maverick De Leon, Cassie Lee Elliget, Jack Van Staveren, Kellie Ann Kimber

 

Show Dates and Venue:

The Lithuanian Club, 45 -50 Errol Street North Melbourne

Friday June 24 8pm
Saturday June 25 8pm
Sunday June 26 7pm
Friday July 1 8pm
Saturday July 2 2pm & 8pm

All tickets $25
www.trybooking.com/OLJ or 0487 487667

On Facebook: Once We Were