No hiccups please – Dragons prepare for battle in world premiere

How to Train Your Dragon. Photographer David Wyatt
How to Train Your Dragon. Photographer David Wyatt

Despite initial technical difficulties and a cancelled first preview performance, the cast and crew of How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular are now ready for their official world premiere performance tonight at Hisense Arena, Melbourne.

AussieTheatre’s photographer David Wyatt yesterday stood face to face with 24 larger than life dragons and an international cast of 23 performers to witness one of the largest theatrical productions ever to go on tour. His dynamic and breathtaking photos can be seen in our exclusive photo feature here.

Leading roles Hiccup (Melbourne’s Rarmian Newton), Astrid (Brisbane’s Sarah McCreanor) together with a cast of world-class circus and acrobatic performers have been training since November 2011 at Fox Studios Sydney to create this world premiere event. The demands of the two leading roles are so great, they will be shared with

The creators of How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular have pushed technologies to their limits and thanks to Sonny Tilders and his team at the The Creature Technology Company (whose body of work also includes the Walking With Dinosaurs phenonmenon), audiences will be see their favourites from the DreamWorks film including Nadder, Gronckle, Nightmare, Toothless the Night Fury and Red Death, which is the single largest animatronic creature ever made by The Creature Technology Company.

Creature Designer Tilders said “How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular will incorporate everything we learned from Walking with Dinosaurs whilst taking the technology to a brand new level. Using state of the art computer software we are able to make these creatures perform in ways that we previously thought unimaginable. Utilising computer controlled flying systems we have created a show that inhabits the air above you as well as the arena floor below.”

It is understood that the head of DreamWorks, Jeffrey Katzenberg will be attending the world premiere this evening, so fingers crossed all technologies work tonight and for the rest of the tour without a ‘hiccup’.

How To Train Your Dragon will play at Hisense Arene until March 11 before moving (with the help of over 40 semi trailers) to All Phones Arena Sydey (March 16-25) and Brisbane Entertainment Centre (March 28- April 1). The show will then tour to the USA.

Erin James

Erin James is's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

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