Review: Christmas Actually (The Little Red Company & La Boite)

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Naomi Price in Christmas Actually. Photographed Dylan Evans.

Christmas is all around at La Boite with their current season of the raucous and touching cabaret-style Christmas Actually by The Little Red Company. Created by Naomi Price and Adam Brunes, the show features all of the songs from the iconic soundtrack of British romcom Love Actually as well as incorporating some of the film’s most recognisable quotes, moments, and dance moves, all wrapped up in a bow with a distinctively Australian sense of humour.

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Cast of Christmas Actually. Photographed Dylan Evans.

Naomi Price captivated the audience with her authenticity and generosity, her incredible vocal range and divinely chilling voice, and her charismatic, magnetic stage presence. Although Price was the star of the show, she constantly drew attention to the band – Mik Easterman, Scott French, Michael Manikus, and Oj Newcomb – and the other singers, and stepped seamlessly into the role of backup singer on several occasions. Stefanie Caccamo astounded audiences with her powerful voice; Tom Oliver brought a bright smile, beautiful voice, and jubilant personality to the stage; and Alex Rathgeber delighted the audience with not only his voice but by arguably out-dancing Hugh Grant. The chemistry and camaraderie between everyone onstage were clear, and it’s always more fun to be an audience member when the people onstage seem to be having a great time too.

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Naomi Price in Christmas Actually. Photographed Dylan Evans.

Finishing with some stellar ‘Carols in the Domain’ impersonations and an appearance from the First Lobster of the nativity, Christmas Actually was a wonderfully fun, silly, and feel-good way to begin the festive season, a reminder that it is the coming together and the sharing of simple things like songs and laughter that make Christmas a magical time of the year for many of us.

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Naomi Price in Christmas Actually. Photographed Dylan Evans.

Lighting design by Sam Gibb varied between focusing attention on the stage and expanding out to include the audience in the action, and Geoff McGahan’s sound design ensured that the band’s renditions of the recognisable songs sounded brilliant. Costume changes from local designers including Rachel Burke, Wil Valor, White Label Noba were also worked into the production. Arranged in a mix of cabaret and tiered seating, many audience members were singing and dancing along at the end, rapt and delighted with the big, beautiful energy of the evening.

If you want to see a show that makes you feel better about the year gone past and more hopeful about the year to come, go and see Christmas Actually.

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Tom Oliver in Christmas Actually. Photographed Dylan Evans.

For ticketing and further information, visit the La Boite website.


 

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