‘Shrek’, the musical with less familiar music

Fiona, Donkey and Shrek

“I THINK I got you beat,” Princess Fiona (Laura Murphy) and Shrek (Max Gambale) from “Shrek the Musical” were singing as they competed over whose miserable childhood was the worse.

Directed by Ylaria Rogers and choreographed by Michelle Heine for Free Rain Theatre, the show opens this week at The Q and will run through the school holidays.

The song sounded  a bit like “Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better“ from “Annie Get Your Gun”, but in this  musical Shrek has just rescued the princess from a dingy dungeon and is getting to know her feistier side.

“Shrek the Musical” is one of the increasing number of musical theatre pieces  based on a film, in this case the DreamWorks animation motion picture.

“CityNews” music writer Ian Mclean, who will conduct the show, says the only song audiences will recognise from the movie is “I’m a Believer”.

With an original book and lyrics by David Lindsay-Abaire and music by Jeanine Tesori, McLean says there were occasional hints of Gilbert and Sullivan, “Wicked” and “Rent”. He said “the homages are quite clever” but that most of the music performed by a 15-piece band under the direction of Kat Tang would be unfamiliar.

The music would be performed using only three string players and would include a virtuoso performance from Ben Sutcliffe, who will play flute, sax, clarinet, tenor sax, bass clarinet and bass sax.  With so many musical implements and instruments percussionist Andrew Heron is required to create intriguing and humorous sounds, they’ve had  to install him install him in The Q’s  laundry with a headphone and visual access to the conductor.

“Shrek the Musical,” at The Q, Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre,  251 Crawford Street, Queanbeyan, until October 14, bookings to theq.net.au or 6285 6290.





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