Sunday, March 19, 2017

March 19. Day 78. Move Yer Bloomin' Arse

My jaw dropped twice at the Lyric Theatre tonight and that was before the curtain opened.
The first time was when sitting in our seats the penny dropped that Drama Teen had never seen My Fair Lady performed on stage. Never. Ever. Admittedly he was 10 when it was last in town in 2008 but I really didn't think there was any big name musical he'd missed and certainly not one I love as much as My Fair Lady. I have failed as a mother. Again. The second time was when applause rang out for someone sneaking into her seat during the overture. Okay, the "someone" was none other than the amazing Dame Julie Andrews, the production's director, but I have never seen a reaction quite like it. And it was repeated after intermission. Astounding. And totally warranted. She is a phenomenon and the show was phenomenal. The Opera Australia and John Frost production delivers a version that is religiously faithful to the original. There's not even the faintest whiff of the modern obsession with updating and reimaging classic productions for today's audiences. Given that Julie Andrews was the original Broadway Eliza there was little chance of that. But one day someone will present a post- apocalyptic version where Henry is trying to teach an alien Eliza to speak like a human and it will worse than all those things Eliza wants to do to Henry in Just you Wait. But this 60th anniversary version is a nostalgia trip. It's flowing frocks and glittering gowns. It's that Ascot scene where a pretty in pink Eliza shines against the colourless British upper crust. It delivers what every good stage musical should - a smile on your face and a song in your heart. Move yer bloomin arse to QPAC and see it. It's positively smashing.
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