Shout it from the rooftops

For a musical many of us suggested would not make it out of Sydney, Priscilla has done remarkably well.

For a musical many of us suggested would not make it out of Sydney, Priscilla has done remarkably well.

Perhaps the term ‘remarkably well’ is an under-statement of epic proportions.

And whilst the show’s success is very much known within the theatre circles, it has perhaps slipped under the radar of the wider public and media.

Put it this way – Hugh Jackman starring in The Boy From Oz on Broadway certainly earned more interest than what has been achieved by Priscilla, and that is probably a little unfair for the show’s lead, Tony Sheldon, who has been an absolute star in the lead role of Bernadette.

This morning Priscilla took out a host of gongs at the awards – including Best Choreographer for the late Ross Coleman, Best New Musical, Best Supporting Actor for Oliver Thornton and Best Set Designer for Brian Thomson.

The Award to Coleman is something we should take as a wonderful honour for a man who left behind a remarkable theatrical legacy. The fact that Priscilla was one of his final major shows and it has gone on to be such a huge international success is a fitting tribute.

I can actually remember not being that excited about Priscilla when it first opened in Sydney. I wasn’t a massive fan of the movie, though I only saw it once when I was much younger, and I just wasn’t convinced that the concept would be a winner.

The hand is up – I was wrong.

I adored Priscilla and still do – it is one of my favourite musicals of the past five or six years and its brilliant mix of comedy, great music and absolute heart has made it a winner around the world.

After the success of Sydney started to be evident, questions were raised about whether the show would even work in Melbourne let alone on the West End or Broadway. Was the show too Sydney-centric, some asked. Again, Priscilla defied any negativity and its success continued.

This is a show that will go down in Australian history for so many reasons.

It will go down as one of the few Australian shows to play on Broadway.

It will go down as the final show that the late, great theatre publicist Judith Johnson worked on.

It will be remembered for its stunning choreography by Ross Coleman.

Nobody will forget the performance by Tony Sheldon – an effort that will be talked about for many years to come as one of the standout musical performances of the era.

We can only hope that when Priscilla is a hit on Broadway, we hear about it in Australia.

We should be shouting from the rooftops – this is something Australia can be very, very proud of.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *