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Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT Hottest new ticket in town.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Wednesday 23rd November 2022 7:30pm, Hayes Theatre.

NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Hottest new ticket in town.

Director Cameron Mitchell has excelled in bringing the genius of Gershwin to the Hayes stage.

NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT is an energetic, quintessential Broadway theatre work. Mitchell has captured that traditional stage musical essence with aplomb and has injected a fresh, in the moment, vibrancy.

This work has many of the famous Gershwin tunes, Someone to Watch Over Me, Let's Call the Whole Thing Off, S'Wonderul, and Fascinating Rhythm. The Book by Joe DiPietro is clever, funny with twists and turns that prove screwball comedy is still a winner.

It's the tale of Jimmy Winter (Rob Mallett), a wealthy and carefree playboy living the good life in the midst of Prohibition. Jimmy has an unfortunate habit of marrying chorus girls, until he's forced to marry a woman of substance - Eileen Evergreen (Grace Driscoll), the "finest interpreter of modern dance in the world". On the weekend of their nuptials, Jimmy meets Billie Bendix (Ashleigh Rubenach), a tough-as-nails bootlegger who has inadvertently stashed 400 cases of gin in Jimmy's basement. Knocked out by this one-of-a-kind woman, Jimmy must deal with his high-strung fiancée and an assortment of bootleggers, prohibitionists, G-Men and chorus girls, as well as one very moralistic senator.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Rob Mallett has it all. The voice, the charisma, the jaw and the archetypal style of the Broadway musical lead. He perfectly portrays Winter as the scallywag playboy who trips over his own feet when aiming to live life to the fullest.

Rubenach's voice is utterly captivating. Her Billie is a joy to watch. Her comedic timing is flawless as are her emotional dramatic moments. I did wonder whether her make up and costume enhanced her gorgeous presence rather than emphasize the tomboy characteristics that the Bendix persona initially is.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Driscoll is another superb and engaging voice who embodies Evergreen, the annoying self-centered fiancé. Octavia Barron Martin is the Duchess Estonia Dulworth. Her operatic tones are astounding, they perfectly fit in her battle duet with Cookie McGee (Andrew Waldin). Waldin is another superb addition to the powerhouse cast. Martin and Waldon have also been chosen for their comedic skills as their characters fight their inner desires in this highlight routine.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Speaking of comedy, the gem of the night is Adorah Oloapu as Chief Berry. Oloapu masterfully commands the stage with her glorious voice and with her whimsical presence. She has the audience in her hands.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Catty Hamilton is perfect as Jeannie Muldoon, the fast-talking chorus girl. Anthony Garcia wonderfully engages us as Duke Mahoney the nervous bootlegger.

Mitchell has created a wonderful ensemble. The cast portray their roles as stereotypical characters but they do this with a grounded reality captivating us in their crazy world. The situations are farcical, yet we are convincingly taken on their journeys, resulting in a hilarious night. An evening that is filled with phenomenal singing and musical numbers that have that grand Broadway presence.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Mitchell's choreography is exemplary, again it plays tribute to that Gershwin era while maintaining a snazzy fresh exuberance. The chorus dance sequences are utterly entertaining. Some of the leads seemed a little tentative on their feet in a couple of their numbers. This may be opening night cautiousness and was a surprise as the talent is clearly there.

Christine Mutton's costumes are exquisite. Simon Greer's set design is remarkable and impressive. Staging that is inventive with clever changes that quickly create perfect scenes, is to be commended. His set is beautifully lit by James Wallis. His lighting design is crucial in making the scenes and their changes come to life.

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

This Gershwin musical is proof of their genius. The songs are savvy, engaging and entertaining. The music and book are witty, insightful and cheeky. There are some wonderful self-referential remarks and songs that point to the ludicrousness and joy that musical theater is. Blah, Blah, Blah is a great example of this, beaming with the delight of musical theatre while showing us it may not matter what the lyrics are!

Cameron Mitchell's talented hand has created this astounding production. He has gathered this incredible cast and captured the true essence of NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT.

I dare say, soon it will be: "Hottest new ticket in town, if you can get it."

Review: Guest Reviewer Kym Vaitiekus Shares His Thoughts On NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT

Photos @ Grant Leslie Photography



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From This Author - Jade Kops

Jade is an Aviation Safety Training Instructor with a love of Theatre, Cabaret, Musical Theatre, and music and is a committed advocate for the live performing arts industry in Sydney and Australia.... (read more about this author)


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