In July this year 2015 it was announced by the Victorian Government that a new smash hit musical, 'Kinky Boots' would grace the Melbourne stage in October 2016, playing at Her Majesty's Theatre. This is a strategy to get more tourists and help boost the economy etc. as was quoted by premier Daniel Andrews and the producers of this anticipated Melbourne musical. All music and Lyrics were written by the iconic pop star Cyndi Lauper.
According to the rave reviews this show has received, this show is destined for huge success out here in Australia and to qoute an article on the Vic.gov site: "The Harvey Fierstein production has won six Tony Awards - including Best Musical in 2013".
I for one am a big fan of the movie and I remember seeing it for the first time as a surprisingly good storyline with great character and charm.
It's great to see new shows coming out here, as we certainly have the talent to fulfil the desired effect of ANY musical that favours these shores.
I just hope that the producers of this new production of 'Kinky Boots' let the show do the talking and not the people they put in it.
What do I mean? See an article on - Articles
Which brings me to a curious point that has had me pondering for over thirty years.
Why can't we produce musicals like anywhere else?
I have heard many different reasons why but none of them have ever really been a convincing argument. Sure we didn't have the tourism that we do now and definitely the population which increases each year.
Obviously we can't compete with places like Broadway and London's West End which have been at this game a long time and have always had the tourism to support these ventures in live theatre, bringing in large amounts of revenue. But now Australia, especially Victoria, with such high visitor rates - could it be the bold new home of shows written by Australians?
I know for a fact that producers in this country are the bravest people, putting their money on the line to not only hopefully gain a profit (and so they should) but giving people in our industry regular employment.
Jeanne Pratt, wife of the late Richard Pratt, is someone that found a niche, doing old, lesser known or forgotten musicals that would otherwise never be done in full-scale production. And is a certain way of keeping people employed and giving the new generation of theatre-goers, a chance to see what audiences of days gone by were privileged to view and hear.