If you wanted to let your Hair down and see Wicked musical theatre, following the yellow brick road to Oklahoma… or the Dunstan Playhouse…will bring you to Every Musical Ever.
Written by Richard Carroll and Gillian Cosgriff, Every Musical Ever is a homage to musical theatre. As the title suggests, it strived to present in eighty minutes every musical ever created, and possibly achieve a Guinness world record. Given the sheer volume of musicals, it wouldn’t be a spoiler to state The Sweet Smell of Success does not occur. But the attempt is nothing short of a rollicking good time.
Starring Australian and New Zealand theatre royalty Georgina Hopson, Dash Kruck, Josie Lane and Hayden Tee, the Adelaide Cabaret (I’ll stop now) Festival performance was a musically comedic celebration. With Musical Director Kara Stanton on piano providing the entire musical score plus acting as the voice of reason at times, the show was one to be remembered.
In a race against time, the performance started with a significantly abridged version of Wicked. It was farcical melodrama at its finest. The minimalistic stage design and props, and the cast also acting as crew added to the ridiculousness. Tee, Kruck, and Hopson sprawled on the floor shimming black fabric to represent Elphaba (Lane) flying was a sight to behold. However, its seven-minute timeframe was deemed too long by Tee.
West Side Story was up next, but it was still deemed too long. At the suggestion of Stanton, the cast turned to mash-ups. The amalgamation of musicals, two, three and sometimes more, transpired based on themes. The Sound of Music morphed into The Lion King, which transformed into Aladdin, that turned into The Little Mermaid. Jesus Christ Superstar became Evita and some Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. We saw Miss Saigon and Xanadu united with Singing in the Rain and Gypsy. From My Fair Lady, we manoeuvred into The Wizard of Oz, Oliver, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
All in all, over fifty-six musicals were performed, albeit minus a verse or two, some narrative plot points, and characters. Lane proclaimed, “this is dumb”. It was dumb, but it was also highly amusing and captivating, the talent simply jaw dropping.
“Musicals are beautiful,” Tee, dressed as Dorothy, declared before breaking into There’s No Business Like Show Business with Hobson, Lane, and Kruck. They are beautiful, and Every Musical Ever was a sensational tribute to everything remarkable about them.
Adelaide Cabaret Festival Review By Anita Kertes