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Blood Brothers

 Simon Thompson and Nick Maclaine

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Blood Brothers

Dates: 10/11/2011 - 04/12/2011

Location: Metcalfe Playhouse

Willy Russell's
BLOOD BROTHERS

presented by Janus Entertainment

Mrs Johnstone Amanda Muggleton
Mrs Lyons Sarah McNeill
Mrs Lyons Richard Mellick
Mickey Simon Thompson
Eddie Nick Maclaine
Sammy Garreth Bradshaw
Linda Julia Hern
Ensemble Maree Cole
  Tyler Jones
  Charles McCombe
   
Director/Designer John Senczuk
Musical Director Jangoo Chapkhana
Choreographer Anna Tsirigotis
Lighting Aaron Stirk
Costumes Penny Mazzucchelli
State Manager Sarah Bunting
Playhouse Technician Rupert Sewell
Front of House Manager Paula Coopes
Orchestra Jangoo Chapkhana
  Tim How
  Ashley Arbuckle
  Robbie Pisano
  Haans Drieburg
   
Publicity: TAZ Entertainment Melanie deCull
Production Photography Peter Stone
Graphic Design Nick Williams KIN Collective
   

 Reviews

... particularly well directed by John Senczuk, who builds up the expectation for the inevitable disaster.
     Rita Clarke, Time Out, Post

Congratulations must go to the cast of Metcalfe Playhouse’s production of Blood Brothers for their enduring levels of energy throughout the performance. Clearly their efforts were rewarded judging by the positive comments from audience members at the conclusion.
Amanda Muggleton ... gave a worthy performance of struggling single-mother Mrs Johnstone. Muggleton played the character with perfect balance. She was both “rough,” yet warm-hearted. Her singing was not characteristically beautiful, she struggled in the higher range, but it was well suited to her character. ... WAPPA student and winner of the Equity Guild Award for Best Newcomer, Nick Maclaine gave a stand-out performance in his role as the twin Eddie. His transition from youth, to teenager to adult was remarkable and extremely believable. It was an absolute pleasure listening to his performance ... Other solid performances came from narrator Ian Toyne, Mrs Lyons Sarah McNeill and Linda played by Julia Hern.
All-in-all a wonderful musical with a memorable script and an ending that is likely to having you wiping away a tear or two.

     Hayley Mayne, Australian Stage on Line

Senczuk has drawn together a mixture of seasoned and inexperienced performers for this production and, by and large, they acquit themselves well. Muggleton is in sassy, emotional form here ... Her voice showed signs of a tough rehearsal program but what Muggleton can't sing, she knows how to sell. Alongside her, McNeill was able to be both stiffly upright and broken at once in an admirable performance as the difficult Mrs Lyons.
The keys to the show, though, are its three young friends. Maclaine showed why he won the Perth Theatre Trust/Equity Guild's best emerging talent last week with a handsome, intelligent performance as Eddie, while Hern was a revelation as Linda. Mickey is a diabolical part, and Thompson was hard put to keep it together at times but he had his moments. His performance of the lovely Long Sunday Afternoon was a highlight of an ambitious production whose success, I suspect, is vital to the future of this brave new local professional theatre venture in Lake Street.
     David Zampatti, The West Australian

Liverpool-born Willy Russell originally wrote and presented Blood Brothers as a school play in 1981, later developing it into a musical for production at the Liverpool Playhouse in 1983. It transferred to London's West End in April of that year, where it ran for some six months at the Lyric Theatre. It has been in continuous production in London pretty much ever since and is currently playing at the Phoenix Theatre.
It is not hard to see why is has proved so popular. ... And with John Senczuk and his players at the Metcalfe, it‘s in safe hands.
Blood Brothers is the best of several very good things to come out of the Metcalfe Playhouse since its mid-year opening. Cast members blend into a wonderfully homogeneous team, costumes and sets work beautifully and the music, provided by a talented ensemble led by Jangoo Chakhana, is well performed.
The acting is superb. ... Simon Thompson and Nick Maclaine as Mickey and Eddie, the twins separated at birth, demonstrated a sympathetic connection that lent their roles genuine depth and credibility, while Sarah McNeill convincingly played Eddie’s adoptive mother, Mrs Lyons, as a neurotic, manipulative woman who nevertheless gained audience sympathy because of her great longing to have a child. McNeill and Muggleton proved excellent foils for each other, character-wise, and at times the chemistry of contrasts between them was almost palpable.
From a superficial aura of light-heartedness in the opening scene to genuine depths of desolation in the last, the plot has something of the essence of a Greek tragedy in its inexorable march to the inevitable denouement, reinforced by the use of the narrator and supporting chorus.
... you are unlikely to see a better production than this one anywhere in the world. ... if you’re in Perth get yourself down to the Metcalfe Playhouse and see it.

     Carol Flavell Neist, Arts Hub

... particularly well directed by John Senczuk, who builds up the expetation for the inevitable disaster.
     Rita Clarke, Post