Singin’ in the Rain: In concert was an absolute hit when it splashed into Brisbane on opening night, once again the MGM classic graced the QPAC stages with more joy and world-class talent than ever. The limited run production presented by Prospero Arts and QPAC transported the ecstatic Sunshine State audience to the cloudy timeless 1950s MGM classic story at the esteemed Concert Hall. The swells of the enchanting orchestra on stage combined with the seasoned and up and coming stars was captivating in every way.
Iconic star of the Australian stage Bobby Fox came alive in his element as the famous song and dance man Don Lockwood. He was born to play this role as the silent movie star turned movie musical sensation. Bobby put his whole heart and soul into the role of Don made famous by the original musical film star Gene Kelly. Bobby had the innate ability to thoroughly entertain the audience through his charismatic character and his incredible tap-dancing talent was second to none with his partner in crime Cosmo Brown (Mark Hill). The beautiful connection with his love interest Kathy Selden (Angelique Cassimatis) was illustrated during the gorgeously performed ballad ‘You were meant for me.’ ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ was of course the magical closing number of Act 1 and Bobby swept us off our feet as he swung around the lamplight exemplifying the recognisable motif and the audience left humming the ear-worm into interval. We can’t wait to see what Bobby Fox does next!
Queenslander Angelique Cassimatis was graceful, spunky, and an effervescent star as Kathy Selden. Her power as a musical theatre performer was enticing and made the audience vouch for her in times of unfairness for her character. This role was perfect for Cassimatis as she showed us her whole heart on stage. Angelique had a glorious stage presence particularly in her shining moment singing ‘You are my lucky star’ and a joyous glow about her in all of the dance numbers as she jumped out of the cake in ‘All I do is dream of you.’ Her relationship was so special with Bobby as Don and their chemistry was electric. The wonderous number ‘Good morning’ highlighted the bond formed with the iconic all dancing and singing trio of Don, Kathy and the hilarious Cosmo.
Mark Hill was such a vivacious larrikin as the wonderful film musician Cosmo Brown. Mark’s talents shone so brightly as he succeeded to ‘Make em laugh’ as the song suggests throughout the entire production. Known for his outstanding work in the international hit The Tap Pack show, Mark left it all on the floor and put on the best vaudevillian performance for the enthralled patrons. Mark’s undeniable connection with Bobby Fox was personified from the beginning with their ‘Fit as a fiddle’ showstopper as they joyously recreated the perfect comedic numbers from the eternal film. ‘Moses Supposes’ was a definite highlight with Cameron Mitchell’s inventive choreography on full display as they pulled off tongue-twisters and took the audience back to that era with fabulous tap sequences joined by the superb Liam Head as he helped with their pronunciation and as production singer.
Georgina Hopson was an outright hoot as the silent movie bimbo Lina Lamont. She was simply hilarious in this role and her crazy spirit kept the audience in stitches as she pretended to be a terrible actress and singer. She was wonderful and so comedic as they projected on the screen behind them the multiple silent films and the final talkies musical. Georgina nailed the over dramatic acting sequences with Bobby Fox with such commitment and gave a wonderfully whiny performance of ‘What’s wrong with me?’ With her range Georgina is incredible at all roles so exceptionally.
Michael Tauhine embodied film studio producer R.F. Simpson with such class and lovable sarcasm as he sternly tried to save the studio from demise as their female star was sabotaging their success.
The incredible ensemble in this production were spotlighted so brilliantly as they danced and sang with such joy and overwhelming gratitude for what they do specifically in the production numbers, ‘All I do is dream of you’, ‘Beautiful girls’, ‘Broadway Melody’ and of course the ‘Singin’ in the rain Finale.’ They utilised the limited amount of stage space so well as they took advantage of the stairs on either side and interacted with the orchestra as well. Lena Cruz was wonderful as Miss Dinsmore and Dora Bailey the nosy reporter. Caitlin Quinn displayed her fun loving sassy persona for Lena’s ‘best pal’ Zelda Zanders. Gabriel Tiller gave his all as the amazing Director of the film in the show, Roscoe Dexter. Courtney Bell, Jack Connor-Rowan, Shay Debney, Chloe Marshall, Joe Meldrum, Isabella Roberts and Sophie Zidar rounded out the wonderous cast.
Don’t miss Prospero Arts inaugural production of Singin’ in the Rain: In concert with an outstanding cast, memorable performance dance numbers and a breathtaking orchestra to have you humming your way out of the theatre. So come on with the rain Brisbane and get your tickets to this limited run production of the timeless masterpiece – Singin’ in the Rain, 70 years since the film premiered.
TICKETS 🎟 Singin’ in the Rain: In concert – Concert Hall, QPAC until 13 November
All images by Darren Thomas.