A rare treat for Sydney – two performances only
- It may be your only chance. The Leonard Bernstein operetta first performed in 1956 is not often performed. Based on the novel Candide by Voltaire, the operetta was performed first with a Lillian Hellman libretto that she had written as a satirical work speaking out against the House of Un-American Activities then in full swing. It was then performed with Hal Prince as director as a shorter piece and then more popularly in 1973 with a return to length with various credited lyricists including Dorothy Parker, Richard Wilbur, Leonard and Felicia Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim and Hellman.
- This year marks the centenary of Bernstein’s birth and this has been a major production worked on for the celebration.
- Mitch Butel directs the show. Personally, I think he might be the most talented man in Australian theatre today.
- Phil Scott (The Wharf Review) plays Pangloss (Voltaire’s persona), Caroline O’Connor plays the old lady (or the still sexy lady with just one buttock as she prefers to be known), Alexander Lewis is Candide and the wonderful Annie Aitken plays Cunegonde.
- There are around 400 members of the Sydney Philharmonia Choir singing.
And, if you need another reason, I saw it in rehearsal and thought it was fantastic and I highly recommend it for the talent, the music, the pomp and the comedy.
There are still tickets remaining for this weekend’s performances.
Feature image via sydneyoperahouse.com