Thursday, 27 June 2019

Any Moment - Melbourne Cabaret Festival review

It’s always exciting to witness new Australian musical theatre being staged, and it’s even more of an experience seeing a production build towards its debut. Presented as part of the Melbourne Cabaret Festival, Bradley McCaw’s concept performance of Any Moment was an opportunity for the creative team and cast to try out some of the songs from the musical and have a play with the musical arrangements. 

Any Moment is set to take place over 24 hours beginning at midnight on New Year’s Eve as we follow the stories of several individuals from a single town. As this is a concept performance focusing on the music, we don’t really meet any of the characters or explore any narrative thread, but the songs chosen do give a good insight into the lives that they lead.

There’s plenty of Aussie humour in the songs, with a nod to The Castle in the opening number "Twenty More Till", and a later one where a character expresses how much he loves a woman in “Top Shelf”. “The Door” duet is a touching moment and can see this being a winning number once we get to know the characters. While it’s not confirmed which songs will be in the production, it will be sorely disappointing if this is not included. With musical direction by Shanon Whitelock, there’s a variety to the style and genre of songs McCaw has penned, including “Coming in From The Suburbs” which allows for the different types of people that reside in this town to be shown.
 
A formidable cast has been assembled for this musical including Natalie O'Donnell (Mamma Mia!), John O’Hara (School of Rock), Kerrie Anne Greenland (Les Miserables, Helpmann winner), Vidya Makan (American Idiot), Du Toit Bredenkamp (Sound of Music), Jessie Singleton and Harry Fenn, in his professional debut. It’s a great chance for the entire team to not only highlight their fantastic talent, but also to see how well they complement each other during the group performances. 

Ultimately, the success of Any Moment will lie in how the songs tie in to the narrative and if they add depth to the story being told. Based on this evening’s performance however, it seems like McCaw is well on his way to crafting a memorable piece of Australian musical theatre.

Any Moment was performed between 25 - 26 June 2019 at Chapel Off Chapel.

For more information on Any Moment's development, head to their website or like their Facebook page.

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