Bright and bubbly musical Hairspray will take you back to the 1960s and have you itching to shake your legs and tap your feet.
Director Chris Scarpellino skilfully brings the large scale production to a small venue, uncovering the cheerful town of Baltimore where main character Tracy Turnblad’s (Sally Redman) biggest concerns are the height of her hair, and her dream of becoming famous.
After being laughed at for being ‘plump’ during an audition for television’s The Corny Collins Show, Tracy’s eyes are opened to a world of discrimination, which she sets out to change.
Her first move is to create a “huge group of minorities” with help from her odd parents Edna and Wilbur Turnblad, (played by the hilarious duo Chae Rogan and Clinton Griffiths) her overly-cheerful friend Penny Pingleton (Jessica Bennett-Griffiths), her teenage heart-throb Link Larkin (Tim Watson), and the ‘coloured’ community in Baltimore, who were also laughed out of the auditions because of the colour of their skin.
But in the process Tracy also makes enemies: The Corny Collins Show’s producer Velma Von Tussle (played gloriously by Michele Lansdown), and her daughter Amber (Zoe Jessie-Rose McDonald).
Hairspray explores discrimination in the sixties but its excessively bright and enthusiastic characters keep the audience’s spirits high, aided by quirky jokes and upbeat songs.
The set is minimalist and Scarpellino relies heavily on his talented cast who dance and sing merrily from detention to jail. The acting and singing (not to mention the crazy dancing) win the audience: each song is sung with passion, and the lyrics are hilarious.
This is a must-see musical that will have you laughing and cheering from the first song until the curtain call, no matter your age. is definitely a must see .
Hairspray is at Canterbury Hurlstone Park RSL. Performances: Wednesday May 30, 8pm; Friday June 1, 8.30pm; Saturday June 2, 12noon and 8.30pm and Sunday June 3, 12 noon.