Sunday, October 08, 2006

Finally it's happening to me

Not expecting to see Priscilla the Musical until later in the week, I was very fortunate to stand-in for another at tonight's world premiere.
After circling through the colourful audience, I found I had a very good seat, 7 rows back centre, betwixt various tele-celebrities, close enough to be the recipient of a jet propelled ping pong ball early in the second act. The opening must have won over everyone in the audience, with not a few finding it superior to the movie in many respects. Someone behind me kept muttering "this is the best thing I've ever seen" ... but enough about the back of my head...
This show has legs, long fishnet-stocking-clad legs. I had some quibbles with a couple of pieces of staging, but most importantly, emotionally there was not a false note in the show. It's outrageous, touching, hilarious and foot-stompingly good fun. The costumes are over-the-top, movie favourites meeting up with new creations in a kitschy fantasia cum Snugglepot & Cuddlepie extravaganza. The bus Priscilla - bigger than the Miss Saigon helicopter, brighter than Phantom's chandelier and soaring further than Chitty Chitty Bang Bang - was second only in size of performance to Trevor Ashley's rendition of Tina Turner's What's Love Got To Do With It? and Genevieve Lemon's turn in a Broken Hill bar, which makes Madame Thenardier seem like a nun in comparison. The leads are all one could hope for, and Tony Sheldon invests his role with both dignity and an airy delight in its comic possibilities.

Pardon my gushing, but everyone connected with the production should be proud of their work.

The after-show party was studded by the likes of Barry Humphries, Terence Stamp, David Wenham, Jimmy Barnes, numerous drag-queens and a performance by Charlene of her "I've Never Been To Me". With the assistance of quite a bit of champagne and a large orange feather (plucked from an overdressed fairy-cake) perched in my rear pocket (I called it my bum-corsage), I headed for the dance floor. After my champagne-propelled exertions were over, I performed my own ping pong act from the podium, quickly retrieving my souvenir before any thieving punters got to it.

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