esther-hannaford

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2013 Helpmann Awards nominees Esther Hannaford, Helen Dallimore, Christie Whelan Browne, Miranda Tapsell, Chloe Dallimore and Lucy Durack.

With enough action to warrant its own musical, five female nominees and the event’s co-host descended on the Sydney Opera House for a glitzy photo session.

But it was a frock tug-of-war over a Rachel Gilbert-designed dress that created the most angst, when Helen Dallimore and Lucy Durack both fell in love with one of her black, beaded creations.

It was decided Durack should wear the gown, however Dallimore reappeared from the dressing room a short time later in the dress anyway. A fashion face-off was avoided when Durack graciously let her co-star from Legally Blonde The Musical pose in the number. Instead Durack wore an old Rachel Gilbert dress from her own closet.

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Little Shop Of Horrors Australia - Esther Hannaford & Brent Hill

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“Full Moon Lullaby” performed by Esther Hannaford from King Kong Live On Stage

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Little Shop of Horrors is a ”flawless revival of a cult musical classic” (SMH) from the Producers and Award winning creative team behind the 2014 production of Sweet Charity.
Filmed by James Terry & Michael Wilson
Edited by James Terry

King Kong the Musical - Song List

Act 1

Hunting Season - Carl Denham

Sweethearts on Parade - Busker Quartet

Brother Can You Spare A Dime - Gentlemen of the Company

What’s It Gonna Take - Ann Darrow

I Wanna Be Loved By You - The Company

Colossus - Carl Denham

Special FX - Anna Darrow & Ladies of the Company

Perfect - Jack Driscall

Foxtrot

Ritual - High Priestess of the Company

The Ascent

Face of Forever - Jack Driscall

Full Moon Lullaby - Ann Darrow

The Chase

Act 2

What’s It Gonna Take - Ann Darrow

The Greatest Show On Earth - Carl Denham, Cassandra and the Company

Dance With Me - Jack Driscal

A Simple Prayer - Ann Darrow

Kill 4 The Thrill - Carl Denham and the Company

Get Happy - Ladies of the Company

Rise - Cassandra and the Company

Full Moon Lullaby (reprise) - Ann Darrow

Amen, Opus 35

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Everyone should go see King Kong the Musical!! I saw the first preview last night and although they are still making changes to songs & scenes before opening in June, it was soooo good! The puppetry is so spectacular and the entire cast is so talented. I believe that if you thought the puppetry in War Horse is great, the puppetry in this will blow your mind!
Aside from Kong, of course, the highlight for me was Esther Hannaford (^) as Ann Darrow. Esther is one of my favourite performers because not only is she incredibly talented and has such a unique voice, but she is one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. Always plenty of hugs whenever I see her :) I also have to mention how great it was to hear her voice up on such a huge stage! Reminded me of the Four Larks productions she has done - such a beautiful voice that is so different to how she sounded in Hairspray etc. If you listen to ‘Full Moon Lullaby’ on youtube, you’ll understand what I mean.

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I went to see King Kong: The Musical last night at the Regent Theatre.

The King Kong puppet was amazing. Apparently weighing over a tonne, the puppet was controlled by steel cables, a team of ground crew and (I assume) computer controlled mechanisms in the structure of the face. There was clever use of shadow as the audience first sees King Kong, which gave the impression of an impossibly large and fearsome animal. 

Geometric projections were also used to give the impression of water, storms and other situational effects. I’ve never seen those techniques before in a production, which was interesting. Definitely added a contemporary edge to the classic story. 

Musical wise it was okay… this song and ‘Rise’ were the best. I spent the first half of the show thinking that it was just going to be a visual spectacular with no strong plot, and then the second half was a strong critique of visual spectaculars with no strong plot. There was some exploration of The Other as well, both using King Kong and the natives of Skull Island.  

Esther Hannaford was great as the lead, I’d like to see her in another performance. Her voice has a slight folk edge to it, which was great in the role of Ann Darrow.

King Kong was a good show, not the best I’ve seen in Melbourne but certainly worth going to see, especially if you have an interest in puppetry or stage craft.