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Anything Goes sets sail

TAP dancing sailors, zesty singing and lots of laughs aboard the glamorous transatlantic steamer, the SS American, gave the audience a bigger kick than the champagne on opening night of Wonthaggi’s latest musical, Anything Goes.
It was all smooth sailing for talented director Karen Milkins-Hendry of Wonthaggi Theatre Group’s Anything Goes, a definite winner with the enthusiastic audience on Saturday.
Combine a little bit of Love Boat, English farce and high jinks on the high seas, and you have the silly story line of mismatched lovers complete with a smattering of corny lines and jokes.
Silly the story may be, but Anything Goes is so much more, featuring a delectable selection of Cole Porter songs including the ever popular I Get a Kick Out of You, It’s De-Lovely, You’re the Top and the show stopper Blow, Gabriel, Blow belted out by glamorous leading lady Sarah Kate Hanley, as the brassy 1930s nightclub entertainer Reno Sweeney.
Sarah Kate, is an absolute knock out. The blonde bombshell won the trifecta on opening night in her role with her magnificent singing, energetic dancing and comedy routines. She is “De-Lovely”, has the wow factor and is every bit the shining star.
For Sarah’s brother and leading man Will Hanley, fresh from directing Newhaven College’s magical Seussical musical, it was a big character change from his raunchy lead role in Wonthaggi’s Cabaret last year to the handsome, love interest Billy Crocker. That star quality runs in the Hanley family as Will again won huge applause for his beautiful singing.
Sarah  Kate and Will are  surrounded by a class crew of passengers and stowaways including Wonthaggi’s own  Jay Nelsen as gangster Moonface Martin (he was a real laugh).
Emmi Latham of Inverloch as the raunchy Erma, was terrific and new to the Wonthaggi stage, Kerryn Moren, as the sweet singing, beautiful debutante Hope Harcourt was delightful.
Hope’s eccentric, socialite mother, Evangaline Harcourt, expertly played by seasoned performer Kerrie Giles of Leongatha, looked the part in her exquisite costumes and gave the audience a good laugh with her onstage antics as she strolled from scene to scene accompanied by Cheeky, the show’s real life cute canine.
Captain of the SS American Michael Giles seemed to relish this role and did a fine job as did Inverloch’s Tim Gesell as English aristocrat Lord Evelyn Oakleigh.
And hello sailors, the talented troupe was an absolute asset to the show, their singing, dancing and set changes were amazing and Wonthaggi’s Caleb Hooke gets a special mention for his beautiful singing.
There was not a weak link in the show. The whole cast shone and behind the scenes the production team can take a bow. The show ran so effortlessly and it looked like the cast was having a ball.
This is an uplifting musical the whole family would enjoy.
Talking to The Star after the show, Karen said she could now breathe a sigh of relief.
“They have all done a wonderful job and I am so happy the opening night went so well, there were no mistakes.”
Karen summed it all up: the opening night was a triumph, the music fabulous thanks to musical director and conductor Kirk Skinner.
The sets, designed by Tad Hendry, were amazing, costumes dazzling. Choreographer Bron Kalos gave the audience a real treat with the wonderful dance routines, especially the big tap number.
Blissfully entertaining, this buoyantly staged musical is a must see at the Wonthaggi Union Community Arts Centre.
Tickets are selling fast for performances on Thursday, May 31 (8pm), Friday, June 1 (8pm), Saturday, June 2 (2pm and 8pm), Sunday, June 3 (5pm), Thursday, June 7 (8pm), Friday, June 8 (8pm) and Saturday, June 9 (2pm and 8pm). Ticket prices are $35 adult and $30 concession (full time students, and full Centrelink and DVA concession card-holders only), and are available from the Wonthaggi Workmen’s Club, 75 Graham St, Wonthaggi (5672 1083).  The club is open seven days a week, and credit card facilities are available.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=3542

Posted by on May 29 2012. Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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