Monday June 26, 2017

The Colour Purple Review

Photo Credit To Belinda Strodder


Presented by: StageArt, October 13- November 6, Chapel off Chapel, Prahran- Melbourne.

Hours after the final bows we can still hear the echo’s of the voices that graced the stage. The voices that left goosebumps on the skin, smiles on faces and tears in the eyes.

The all Australian cast that took to the stage for the Australian premiere of the Color Purple presented by StageArt Australia was a triumph.

Based on Alice Walker’s 1982 novel and Steven Spielberg’s 1985 film, the musical The Color Purple, by Marsha Norman, Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray, is the story follows the journey of Celie, an African-American woman in the American South from the early to mid-20th century.

Her story, grief & joy transcends to the audience, a story to be told and not forgotten.

With a beautiful degree of intimacy Director Robbie Carmellotti achieved his ambition of transporting the audience into Celie’s life. Played by Jayme-Lee Hanekom we believed her pain, felt it with her. She was courageous and strong with a voice that fills the room with the right amount of soul and depth. 

All woman on legs. Thando Sikwila was Shug Avery. With every move of her hip we believed every moment of her performance. Striking and effortless. Shug Avery needs to be heard.

Choreographed by Jayden Hicks, true to form the performances had the right about of raw masculinity and softness of flow. Movements integrated into the musical without taking away from the story. Choreography that complimented the characters as they transitioned throughout the performance. 

Jayden has the ability to know when to hold the breath of line before dynamically changing structure of the movement coupled with understated and yet incredible purposeful and dynamic lighting from designer Jason Bonvard.

Every accolade to Katherine Armstrong and Robbie Carmellotti together with every production, cast and orchestra member a joyous score featuring jazz, ragtime, gospel, African music and blues. The Color Purple is not to be missed.

Watch out Australia, StageArt is here.

Limited tickets available:

Kate Meade

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