I did not know that the author of the Mary Poppins book series was born only about 255 kms (161 miles) from where I sit today (Brisbane, Australia), in a sleepy old two called Maryborough (The name of the town probably has nothing to do with the name of the character that the author created).
Yes, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious indeed! P. L. Travers (or original name of Helen Lyndon Goff) was country author who created the magical and mysterious nanny and the show based on this famous character started its run at the Lyric Theatre at QPAC yesterday. It is a homecoming of sorts.
Most people will remember this nanny from the 1964 Hollywood adoption, made famous by Julie Andrews’s Oscar winning performance and the Sherman Brothers cheeky songs. In 2004, Cameron Mackintosh and Disney collaborated to bring the musical to stage at West End with follow up shows in Broadway and Australia. The Australian run started in Melbourne in 2010, and last night, it came to Brisbane.
And what a homecoming it was. A packed audience saw Verity Hunt-Ballard play Mary Poppins in a performance that was as much soulful as it was colorful. Matt Lee (ex judge from So you think you can Dance Australia) is the perfect foil as Bert. Simon Burke and Pippa Grandison play the Banks couple with intensity. But the audience favourite may yet have been Sally Ann-Upton playing the housekeeper, Mrs. Brill.
The show, is a must see, even if you are not a fan of live stage productions. Just the songs will make you want to hum along. The dialogues are crisp, the acting fluent and the clockwork precision of the theatrical production would have made P. L. Travers happy. Go see it!
All the details:
On now till Mar 17th 2012.
Friday* and Saturday 7.30pm, Saturday and Sunday matinees
Tickets $45 – $132.50
*Special holiday matinees will replace Friday evening shows on January 13, 20 and 27.
Wednesday and Thursday 7.30pm, Friday 1.30pm and Sunday 6.30pm
Tickets $45 – $127.50
Wednesday and Thursday 7.30pm (excludes 30 Dec to 4 Jan)
(4 x C Reserve tickets) $140
Tickets $40 – $90
The duration of the show is 2 hours and 45 minutes with a 20 minute interval.
Buy tickets at QPAC.
Hot Tip: If you have a child under the age of six, and if that child would not settle (as was our case), then make sure you ask the ushers to help you to go to the “Viewing Room”. This room is at the back of the theatre, has around 8 seats in a private sound proof box, and your child can make mayhem there without causing you to close your eyes and ears in embarrassment. You can still see the show, and hear it via a slightly muffled speaker, and you can go in and out of this room as you may please.
Also, if you have a child under 2, make sure to collect a free “Babes in Arms” ticket from the box office before going in.
CraftGossip attended the show courtesy of QPAC Publicity.