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From GayNZ.com

Performance
Review: Wellington Musical Theatre's The Sound of Music
By David Cosgriff
27th September 2008 - 11:07 am

Watching The Sound of Music is like putting on your favourite pair of slippers - a comfortable, warm experience. Best of all it doesn't require too much concentration. The storyline is familiar, so you can just sit back and enjoy the memories the songs and words invoke.

Thankfully, The Wellington Musical Theatre's production of The Sound of Music will generate a whole new set of memories about the world's most well-known and arguably favourite musical. It is a show, of course, all about the songs, all about the singing, so you expect it to be perfect. And it was. The entire cast from the oldest to the littlest brought a new sparkle to this musical, which was a delight to watch and hear. This cast has among it some of the finest voices to fill a theatre.

It would be easy to heap praise on Jessica Graham who plays Maria (and reminded me in equal amounts of Ellen DeGeneres and Julie Andrews) for she deserves it. But this is much more than a one-woman show and in this case, all the singers and actors added to her performance, and the quality of the show. So did the sets (which were brilliant), the lighting, the sound effects - everything flowed together smoothly and effortlessly, which usually means a huge amount of effort has gone on behind the scenes to make that possible.

Jessica Graham plays Maria
Shows are also all about the audience and the one on Friday night lapped it up, singing along whenever they got the chance and enjoying the odd hiccup, such as when Captain von Trapp (Isaac Graham and real-life husband of Jessica) was dancing with Maria and his fly was clearly undone. Fun times.

While the show may be familiar to most, director Grant Meese has managed to squeeze in a few surprises along the way, such as the scene near the end at the song contest prize-giving. It's hilarious, perhaps more so because it is so unexpected. It's worth the admission price alone.

This production is guaranteed to lift your spirits. And yes, despite myself, I was caught singing 'high on the hills there's a lonely shepherd' when leaving the theatre. Infectious? Yes, and great fun.

The show runs until 11 October at Wellington's Opera House. Find out more at the link below.



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