Monday, July 02, 2007

Ethnic Stage Delights

Over the weekend I enjoyed the stage delights from two ends of the theatre spectrum no further apart from each other, but couldn’t be anymore ‘Melbourne’ if they tried. Both productions have a limited season remaining in Melbourne and those looking to experience Melbourne’s theatre scene should snare tickets quickly.

After the successes of ‘Wogs Out of Work’, ‘Wogarama’ and other various ethnic comedy shows, Italo-Australian comedian Joe Avati and his team put together ‘Il Dago’, a spoof of Il Divo with a heavy ethnic twist. Avati, along with George Kapiniaris, Simon Palomares and Sri Lankan newcomer Nish, provide the laughs and memories of growing up as an ethnic minority in Australia.

Anyone who has seen Avati, Kapiniaris and Palomares on stage before can be guaranteed a mighty good time and sore belly from the constant belly laughs. From the family visits we used to do when younger to being belted and told not to cry to interracial marriage and its scorn within families, everything sounds awfully familiar to a lot of wogs. I, along with 500 other wogs from northwest Melbourne, knew exactly what the guys were talking about. Newcomer Nish, provides an interesting perspective on families from the sub-continent, but falls short from the other three. But with time, he’ll prove to be a good entertainer.

Not surprisingly, in an ethnic comedy, no race is left untouched. While Italians, Greeks and Spaniards cop the brunt of their antics, Indians, Sri Lankans, Chinese, French, Croatians, Aboriginals and mostly, Lebanese are mentioned with riotous punchlines, mostly from Palomares. It’s highly recommended to bring an extra pair of undies because chances are you’ll wet your pants from the laughs provided.

Il Divo are touring around Melbourne, Geelong and Shepparton right throughout July before heading to Adelaide then onto Hobart, Sydney and Perth. Sydneysiders can catch the boys throughout September and October. Tickets have been selling fast so those interested should book quickly.

Visit their webpage for more information about performances and dates. Highly recommended show for any wog.

From stand-up comedy to the musical theatre, I, along with Melbourne’s theatre going scene saw the latest production of Miss Saigon. A production anyone interested in musical theatre should go see and fast.

Based upon the classic Madame Butterfly, Miss Saigon is set during the Vietnam War where an American GI meets a young innocent village girl who works for The Engineer as a prostitute. Their love and tradegy ensues with colourful but ultimately powerful performances for the next two and half hours.

Entertaining and solid performances from Leo Tavarro Valdez (The Engineer), Laurie Cadevida (Kim), David Harris (Chris) and Juan Jackson (John) give this production depth and credibility with a story that could easily be watered down. It also helped that both David Harris and Juan Jackson swanned around the stage topless in Act One showing off their amazingly ripped torsos.

The show stopping ‘American Dream’ number was entertaining and riddled with comedic timing from Tavarro Valdez and had me singing it repeatedly all the way home.

Miss Saigon is playing in Melbourne until July 15. If you haven’t already seen it, I highly recommend booking tickets fast. The production moves to Brisbane for a very limited season before moving onto Sydney in September. Visit the Miss Saigon website for more information and tickets.


Sarah said...

Hey hey!

I loved Miss Saigon! Saw it a few months ago.

I think you might like Russell Peters - he's an Indian Canadian comedian and is pretty hilarious. He does awesome accents. Even Chinese ones.

xox Sarah

Evol Kween said...

Sometimes I think I'd love to be a prostitute for an American GI. Oh, the drama!

R*Y A N said...

and how cute was that little boy?

or did you not even notice him on the account of the half-naked hunks?

i told you you'd like it.

Johnny said...

Jo saw it too and couldn't stop raving about it! Btw, They are showing Lion King over in Japan and as I know you saw in at Broadway (lucky!), you'll probably understand it if I told you I'm tempted to see them sing circle of life.....J-pop style. ohhh the hair dye!