May 2015

State of Origin The Musical hits the rehearsal room.
Good news. I never thought it would happen, but my Play State of Origin The Musical has finally been performed – at least 45 minutes of it has – with QPAC (the Queensland Performing Arts complex) providing support which included a producer, Paul Dellit, and two weeks in a rehearsal room.
For two weeks Director David Bell and Musical Director Andrew McNaughton shaped the Script into a show.
Andrew McNaughton wrote two magnificent new songs – one was the perfect solo for Tom Oliver’s distinctive voice – and the other song was performed by the whole cast of eight actor-singers.
Because of the limited time, David Bell decided to work on a portion of the play.
Everybody involved was delighted when we received two unexpected surprise visitors at rehearsals. See separate story below.
At the end of the fortnight the Show was performed with a five-piece band in front of an invited audience of 125 from the theatre industry to see what could be done and how it looked and sounded.
The audience seemed to laugh at the jokes and enjoy the songs – which are all written in Queensland by Queenslanders.
An ex-Adelaide woman and her daughter said two of the songs made the hair stand up on their forearms.
A woman in her 50s told me afterwards: “I didn’t want to come tonight; I have no interest in football or Origin, but when that actress came out and sang Only Human by David Bentley, I was hooked.”
An ABC newsreader said he had tears in his eyes from start to finish.
So what happens next?
Before anyone will get a chance to see it on stage, the plan is to do another workshop, this time for four weeks with two performances. By October.
So we are now looking for funding and sponsors who want to get behind a Play which the whole of Queensland can enjoy.
Something cheerful that will lift us up.

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