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Watch this present a world-first all-female-identifying cast for 'A Funny Thing Happened'

Australia’s first and only Sondheim repertory company Watch This, make their Chapel Off Chapel debut this September with a reimagined production of the classic Broadway musical, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum – featuring a world first all-female-identifying cast.


A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum takes comedy back to its roots, combining situations from time-tested, 2000-year-old comedies of Roman playwright, Plautus, with the infectious energy of classic vaudeville. A nonstop laugh fest in which Pseudolus struggles to win the hand of a beautiful courtesan named Philia for his master, Hero, in exchange for freedom from enslavement. A fast-paced, witty, irreverent farce, it is considered one of the funniest musicals ever written.


After the critically acclaimed production of Into the Woods director Melanie Hillman, choreographer Amy Zhangwith, Music Director Trevor Jones, Set Designer Sarah Tulloch and Lighting Designer Rob Sowinski reunite with Assistant Director Bobbie-Jean Henning and Costume Designer Jemima Johnston joining the creative team.


“I genuinely hope that audiences leave the theatre with a sore belly from laughing! But also, an appreciation of Sondheim’s craft and artistry, as well as an introduction, or reminder, of the joy of the ‘Vaudeville Farce’.I hope they see that women can be funny, and that feminine beauty and charisma comes in all different sizes, ages, and colours. And that you can have more than one middle-aged woman on a stage in this country” - Melanie Hillman (Director).


Featuring an all-female cast of 11 including, Charmaine Gorman (Pseudolus/Prologus Act 1), Milo Hartill (Hero), Jacqui Hoy (Hysterium), Mel O’Brien (Philia), Sophie Weiss (Domina), Luisa Scrofani (Miles Gloriosus), Cathy Woodhouse (Senex), Sarahlouise Younger (Marcus Lycus), Judith Roberts (Erronius) and Kristie Nguy (All the ensemble incl. Courtesans).


Renowned for their fresh and innovative interpretation of Sondheim’s works in intimate spaces, Watch This will surprise audiences with their ground-breaking approach to this 1962 Tony Award winner.


The vocal strength of this cast made me wish for a cast recording... they were that good! Josh Stent - Broadway World on Into the Woods.

If you're looking for a Sondheim show with a more shallow learning curve, exceptional book and exciting music, paired with excellent performances and direction, this show is the one to beat –Daniel Beratis - Farrago on A Little Night Music.

Watch This don't make us stand in the middle of the gallery and look at the work of a 'genius'. This Sunday in the Park with George moves us to the corners and behind the crowds where the view isn't as clear and perfect. It's a production for us and for now - Anne-Marie Peard - Sometimes Melbourne on Sunday in the Park with George.


Cast of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum

Show Details: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way To The Forum

Dates: 8-24 September 2023

Friday 8: 7.30pm (Preview)

Saturday 9: 2pm (Preview) & 7.30pm

(Opening Night) Sunday 10: 2pm Wednesday 13: 7.30pm

(Relaxed Performance) Thursday 14 & Friday 15: 7.30pm

Saturday 16: 2pm & 7.30pm Sunday 17: 2pm

Monday 18: 7pm (Industry Night)

Thursday 21 & Friday 22: 7.30pm

Saturday 23: 2pm & 7.30pm

Sunday 24: 2pm Cost: Tickets from $50-60 + Booking Fees

Duration: Two hours & 20-minutes (incl. 20-minute interval)

Venue: Chapel Off Chapel Tickets

https://chapeloffchapel.com.au/show/a-funny-thing-happened-on-the-way-to-the-forum/


CAST

Charmaine Gorman (Pseudolus/Prologus Act 1), Milo Hartill (Hero), Jacqui Hoy (Hysterium), Mel O’Brien (Philia), Sophie Weiss (Domina), Luisa Scrofani (Miles Gloriosus), Cathy Woodhouse (Senex), Sarahlouise Younger (Marcus Lycus), Judith Roberts (Erronius) and Kristie Nguy (All the ensemble incl. Courtesans).

CREATIVE TEAM

Director: Melanie Hillman

Musical Director: Trevor Jones

Choreographer: Amy Zhang

Assistant Director: Bobbie-Jean Henning

Set Designer: Sarah Tulloch

Costume Designer: Jemima Johnston

Lighting Designer: Rob Sowinski

Sound Designer: Marcello Lo Rico Production

Manager: Anna Davies


ABOUT WATCH THIS Australia's first and only Sondheim repertory company, Watch This is a bold, grass-roots organisation presenting outstanding, sophisticated musical theatre to audiences in Melbourne and regional Victoria. Our ambition and commitment to the highest production/ performance standards attract teams of wonderfully talented artists and creatives. Heading into our ninth year, we've garnered an enviable reputation in a highly competitive field, boasting twenty-seven Green Room Award nominations with four wins, alongside multi-million dollar commercial and state sponsored productions. We have also broken ground by successfully touring full-scale musicals to regional centres. We are passionate about creating exciting, immediate theatrical experiences for theatre-goers. We are also committed to ensuring that these experiences are available to as many people as possible - a philosophy that informs the relatively simple matter of ticket pricing to more complex touring proposals. Past productions include Assassins, Pacific Overtures, Company, Merrily We Roll Along, A Little Night Music. Sunday in the Park with George and most recently, Into the Woods. All projects to date have been made possible by the generosity of the Lyngala Foundation and other visionary individuals/ organisations, including the Opera & Arts Support Group and Robert Salzer Foundation

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