The Fame Reporter interviewed leading star of stage and screen Lucy Durack starring as Princess Fiona in highly-anticipated ‘Shrek the Musical’ – playing at QPAC’s Lyric Theatre until 7 February 2021.
Shrek The Musical, based on the Oscar®-winning DreamWorks film, brings the hilarious story of everyone’s favourite ogre to life on stage. This lavish multi-million dollar musical stars the ultimate fairy tale cast with Ben Mingay as Shrek, Lucy Durack as Princess Fiona, Todd McKenney as Lord Farquaad, special guest appearance by Marcia Hines as The Dragon and Nat Jobe as Donkey.
Join Shrek, our unlikely hero, and his loyal steed Donkey as they set off on a quest to rescue the beautiful Princess Fiona from her tower, guarded by a fire breathing love-sick dragon. Add the vertically challenged Lord Farquaad, a gang of fairytale misfits, and a biscuit with attitude, and you’ve got an irresistible mix of adventure, laughter and romance, guaranteed to delight audiences of all ages!
We talked to Lucy about Shrek’s return to the stage, her role as the spunky Princess Fiona, what she loves about performing in Brisbane and more.
See our interview below!
Welcome to The Fame Reporter Lucy, what is the most exciting aspect of coming back to the stage after 2020’s hiatus, particularly for Shrek the musical?
First of all I genuinely love Shrek as a show so to be part if it is a delight.
However I think the fact that theatre is happening at all is exciting and to be honest just a massive relief, I do feel lucky to be part of it but even if I wasn’t I would still feel happy relief.
I felt the same way when Frozen and Pippin opened in Sydney even though I wasn’t part of or there for either, such emotional relief – theatre is such a big and beloved part of my life.
What drew you to the role of Princess Fiona and what is it like performing the spunky role and defying the norms of a stereotypical royal?
I love how anti-“princess” she is and there is a lot of room for comedy. She really wears her heart on her sleeve even when she thinks she isn’t, which I also really like about her.
What has been the most rewarding and challenging parts about performing in Shrek the Musical?
It is such an inclusive and joyful show celebrating the fact that what is different about us is what makes us special and that we can all be different and still get along. I love that message.
How has it been getting back together with the cast and the rehearsal process during this time?
It has been exciting and joyful! The three day lockdown in the middle of it was a bit nerve wracking, like “are we going to be shut down again” but we weren’t so that has made us even more grateful.
What 3 performers dead or alive would you love to have a dinner party with?
Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Steve Carrell.
What inspires you and keeps you creative during this difficult period that the arts industry is going through?
I co-wrote a web series called ‘Love in Lockdown’ with Robyn Butler utilising the experience of being in lockdown that Wayne Hope directed and I played opposite Eddie Perfect and it just won an AACTA Award and that was a very fulfilling and creative experience.
Ultimately though it has been a very difficult time for so many in the arts as most have not been helped with any government financial assistance whilst the industry has being completely shutdown for nearly a year. a large component still shut down, and yet, most of my inspiration continues to come from great tv series, music, books and other forms of the arts. I imagine that is true of so many, so, perhaps not so ironically, the arts is what has helped me get through this difficult time for the arts.
I really hope the arts eventually get properly recognised particularly in Australia for being the important (and economically impressive) industry it is.
What do you love about performing in Brisbane?
I love Brisbane as a city, to me it just has such a special feel and I think it comes partly from being an ideal sized city, very cosmopolitan but also not too crazy. I think people here have a good work-life balance.
I love performing at the Lyric Theatre at QPAC, it is a great big theatre but you can hear the audience from the stage nicely too, it feels like they are not too far away, and Brisbane audiences are generous.
These days, my family and I like to feel that we are living a real life “Bluey’ experience when in Brisbane too, which is a real perk for us, we love Bluey.
What messages from Shrek the Musical resonate with you the most?
I love how it celebrates being true to yourself and that what makes you different is what makes you special and I love that a bunch of characters who are all so different can get along and be inclusive.
Fame Reporter Word Play
Love that guy
To perform in a ‘choreographed street scene song’ along the lines of Bjork in ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’.
Go-to Karaoke song
Grease Mega Mix or Fancy By Iggy Azalea or Living on a Prayer if I don’t have to use my voice the next day.
Any secret talents
I am immodestly very good at parallel parking.
Favourite song right now
Fly Away by Tones and I.
Probably still Wicked or anything by Matthew Robinson.
Dressing Room Necessity
Toothbrush and paste and an emergency Red Bull in the fridge just in case.
Your freak flag obsession
That song always makes me cry with joy.
Favourite song you sing in Shrek
This Is How A Dream Comes True – what FUN it is to flee a castle and a life size dragon with a ‘prince’ and his noble steed’!
Place you want to travel to
Rottnest Island again one day, we have taken our daughter but not our son there yet and it is my favourite place.
Favourite song you don’t sing in Shrek
I love the song with Donkey and the Three Blind Mice, I am lucky enough however to get to be onstage and listen to it while it happens however, which I think is even better.
TV Show Binge
I have just started The Queen’s Gambit which I love but any day of the week could watch Parks and Rec on a loop.
Finally, favourite thing about performing
The feeling it gives me and how I can process emotion and share that through it.
Thank-you Lucy for joining us at The Fame Reporter and best of luck with ‘Shrek the Musical’ at QPAC this Summer!
All photos – Supplied