THE GATSBY EXPERIENCE: THE CABARET at Footlights Theatrical
Although I wouldn't call it a cabaret but a play with music, Footlight Theatricals The Gatsby Experience: The Cabaret, transported the audience back to a time of flappers, booze and jazz. Adapted from Stephen Sharkey's The Great Gatsby, the work was performed at the Gabba Exchange hotel, the venue complimented the work beautifully with its glorious spiral staircase and picturesque balconies, however, it could have been complimented more with the direction.
For those that are familiar with the text, know that Gatsby isn't, in fact, the central character of the story. Instead, it's Nick Carraway, Gatsby's neighbour, and actor Dominic Bradley remarkably captured the essence of his character. Like Bradley, Aimee Monemont had incredible stage presence as Jordan Baker, capturing everything that the character was: self-centred, cynical and dishonest. Unfortunately I couldn't hear a word of Katya Bryant, the actor playing Daisy, so the central romance between Gatsby (William Boyd) and Daisy wasn't nurtured.
Featured vocalists Sophia Dimopollos and Adam Bartlett were such powerhouses as they performed a repertoire of Postmodern Jukebox to Fergie, a favourite being Bartlett's rendition of Buble's Cry Me A River. It was a joy to watch Kai Taberner and Jade Camillerie bust some moves on the dance-floor, however, although it looked pretty, the dance numbers at time felt very disjointed from the text. It didn't help that the acoustics in the venue didn't help the sound travel which meant that unfortunately, for the majority of the time, we could rarely hear the track being sung or danced to.
Technical issues aside, it was a lovely evening that made me reminded me how much I wish I could've experienced the roaring twenties.
Rating: 3 Stars
DIRECTOR | Roslyn Johnson
CHOREOGRAPHY | Jaide Camilleri
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR | Ashleigh Gates
TECHNICAL DESIGN | Jan Johnson