This Is Your Brain On Musical Theatre - The Grease Edition!

This Is Your Brain On Musical Theatre - The Grease Edition!

In this special edition of This Is Your Brain On Musical Theatre, we put a series of questions to the new Australian cast of Grease. Who did they crush on growing up? What is their first memory of Grease? And just who is cooler at the end of the day - those T-Birds in their leather jackets, or the fabulous Pink Ladies?

Eli Cooper (Eugene), Chris Durling (Doody), Stephen Mahy (Kenickie), Duane McGregor (Roger), Karla Tonkich (Marty), and the Ensemble's Mitchell Mahony, Natasha Marconi, Scott Morris, Shannon O'Shea, Daniel Raso, and Stephanie Silcock share their thoughts on these questions, and more in:

This Is Your Brain On Musical Theatre - The Grease Edition!

BWW: What was your favorite movie musical growing up?

Chris: Simple. The only one I managed to see ... Grease.

Duane: Not because I'm doing it now, but has to be Grease.

Eli: I literally grew up sat in front of The Wizard of Oz - I'm fairly certain I became so obsessed with dancing because of the way Ray Bolger could move his body - and it's still my favorite movie ever made!

Karla: It was definitely Grease, and The Sound of Music ... both so different I know.

Shannon: Our Grease tape was already worn out from my older sister. I was all about Chicago. Must have watched it a thousand times.


BWW: Who was your first musicals crush?

Daniel: My first musicals crush was Liesl - Charmian Carr - from The Sound of Music.

Duane: Olivia Newton-John in Grease. LOL.

Eli: I was, and still am, completely in love with, and mesmerized by, Australia's own Rhonda Burchmore - she is charismatic, extremely talented and, from what I've seen, down to earth and such a genuine person - what a legend and inspiration.

Karla: I believe it was Danny Zuko!!?

Mitchell: Rolfe from The Sound of Music ... before he turned into a Nazi.

Natasha: It would have to be Todd McKenney in Singin' in the Rain in 2001 at the Lyric. It was one of the first musicals I ever saw, and I was just mesmerised by him, and his movement across that stage.

Scott: Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face, and My Fair Lady.

Stephanie: Cats was my first musical, and I had a crush on Brent Osborne, and now we are getting married :)

Stephen: Anthony Warlow.


BWW: What is the first cast album or soundtrack you listened to on repeat?

Daniel: I used to crank the original Broadway cast recording of Wicked. I always used to get strange looks from pedestrians.

Duane: Evita. [It] was the first musical I did when I was 10, in an amateur production.

Eli: I still remember being completely transfixed by the original Broadway cast recording of Wicked! I desperately wanted to be able to sing like those principals ... Ok, I still want to ... they're phenomenal.

Natasha: The soundtrack of Annie, most definitely. I was convinced I would be one of those little girls since the day I saw the movie. I had my own bucket and orphan dress at home.

Scott: After seeing Chicago on Broadway when I was 10 (and singing all the words wrong) my friend sent me the Broadway cast recording. I listened to that on repeat till the CD was broken.

Shannon: Aladdin. It was the theme for my very first dance concert, and I couldn't get enough of it.

Stephanie: Annie. Over, and over, and over!!

Stephen: LES MISERABLES - and MJ's Bad.


BWW: What are your first memories of Grease?

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Jacqueline Bublitz Jacqueline "Rock" Bublitz is a Melbourne-based writer who saw a local production of Annie aged 5, and was never quite the same. Since that first transformative experience, she has been lucky enough to experience musical theatre all over the world. Many of her favourite productions have played right on her doorstep here in Melbourne, and she loves this about her creative home town. In addition to a day job in media, Rock has just completed her first novel, 'The Memory of Stars'. She also blogs about life and love at (where she shamelessly mines the world of musical theatre for inspiration!).

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