The first Australian musical to ever reach Broadway comes to Floreat this November with Playlovers’ production of The Boy From Oz.
Written by Nick Enright and directed by Ryan Taaffe and Daniel Burton, it’s a colourful tribute to the life and times of Australian singer-songwriter Peter Allen.
Using Allen's often autobiographical songs, such as I’d Rather Leave While I’m In Love, I Go To Rio and I Still Call Australia Home, the musical is a journey through his extensive career and turbulent life.
At 18, he was signed by Johnny O'Keefe and then discovered by Judy Garland in Hong Kong – and then went on to marry her daughter, Liza Minnelli.
Taaffe, who also plays the title role, describes Peter Allen as one of Australia’s most enduring performers and says The Boy From Oz has a wealth of wonderful songs that celebrate his life.
“The musical tells a fantastic story about always chasing your dreams and never letting anything get in the way – even death,” he said.
“Peter Allen is an Australian icon and the story tells us that, even from humble beginnings, we can succeed if we are willing to work, no matter the obstacle.”
While many may associate the lead role with Hugh Jackman or Todd McKenney, Taaffe is a firm believer the music and story of Peter Allen will always be accessible, no matter who plays the role.
“Each of us brings something new to the story,” he said. “It’s one of those stories that bends itself to what the performers bring – not the other way round.”
The Boy From Oz plays at 8pm, November 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25 and 26 and 7pm, November 13 and 20. Tickets are $25, $20 concession – book on 0415 777 173 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Playlovers is located at Hackett Hall, Draper Street (off Underwood Avenue), Floreat. More information about Playlovers is at www.playlovers.org.au.
By Thor Bjorn Krebs
Translated by David Duchin
Directed by Kat Henry