It has been over 100 years since the Titanic sunk, killing more than half its passengers and crews on board. While this famous tragedy is a well-documented and discussed event, Stage Art's production of the Australian premiere of Titanic: The Musical breathes new life into the story, creating a gloriously entertaining show that should not be missed.
cast of 20 is flawless and all the actors take on their numerous roles
with much gusto, achieving character changes effortlessly and at times, instantly.
The production is meticulously directed by James Cutler, and from the opening
scene, the hustle and bustle and the
excitement felt from everyone on board is perfectly
encapsulated as the latter is replicated in the audience.
of the stand out performances included Jon Sebastian as the pompous J.
Bruce Ismay, Casey Withoos as the second-class passenger with aspirations of
first-class grandeur Alice Beane, Sam Bennett as love-struck
third-class passenger Jim Farrell, and Dom Winsor, reprising the role he
first played over a decade ago in the US production, as the ship's
designer Thomas Andrews.
Stone's story and book develops elegantly and organically: even with such a
large number of characters, every single person has a clear and
distinctive story arc or motivation. Whether it be through a song or a
short scene to tell their story, they all felt fleshed out, whereupon the
emotions felt and reactions experienced with the sinking of the ship are rendered even
more heartbreaking to witness. The characters in Titanic: The Musical were
based on actually on board the ship, and while a little creative licensing
occurs, Stone's careful research is evident and pays off marvelously.
music and lyrics by Maury Yeston are wonderfully brought to life by the
highly talented band and singers under the proficient musical direction of Kent Ross. The ensemble pieces, especially the
epic opening number, are a dream to listen to and you cannot take your
eyes of the accompanying action happening on stage. Greta Sherriff and Matthew Hyde
perfectly complement each other with their voices and their
song "I Give You My Hand" is a tender and touching moment. Adam Di
Martino and James Brown's dynamic ragtime number "Doing the Latest Rag" is also a firm favourite.
Titanic: The Musical
is a gripping and entertaining story that reaches far beyond the familiar historical narrative we though we knew. Already halfway through 2016, it is fair to say that this
will emphatically be one of the best musicals, if not one of the best shows, of the
Venue: Chapel Off Chapel, 12 Little Chapel St, Prahran
Season: 24 July | 7:30pm Wed- Sun, 1.30pm Sat and Sun (17 July 1.30 performance will be AUSLAN interpreted)
Tickets: A Reserve: $69 Full / $65 Concession | B Reserve $59 Full / $55 Concession | C Reserve $49
Bookings: Chapel Off Chapel
*Review first appeared on Theatre Press on 1o July.