What’s On: Anything Goes (Phoenix Ensemble)

Anything Goes

3 – 25 March 2023 (every Friday and Saturday)

Phoenix Ensemble, Beenleigh Showgrounds, James Street, Beenleigh

In Cole Porter’s Tony-winning musical romp across the Atlantic, etiquette and convention head out the portholes as two unlikely pairs set off on the course to true love… proving that sometimes all destiny needs is a little help from a crew of singing sailors, tap dancing gangsters, and some good old-fashioned blackmail.

Playing leading lady Reno Sweeney, Jaime O’Donoghue said that Anything Goes was a frivolous and heart-warming show, where you never knew what was going to happen next.

“The comedy is so quick witted and perfectly timed, the romance is beautiful and helps the audience root for the characters and the songs will be stuck in your head long after you leave the theatre,” she said, adding that it was special to work with such talented creatives to bring community theatre at its best to the heart of Beenleigh. 

“The creative team have worked so hard on bringing their vision of Anything Goes to life and expressing their art in a way that is so thought out and so caring for their craft,” O’Donoghue said. “We as the cast are so grateful to be able to present their hard work on Phoenix Ensemble’s stage.”

Director Miranda Selwood said that Anything Goes was a classic for good reason, that the story was fun-filled and zany, but the ingredients were all-too-familiar: love, friendship, family, new beginnings, work, fantasies, winning some and losing some.

“I love the golden era musicals that came straight out of traditions of vaudeville; unapologetically entertaining escapism, a whole lot of heart, sequins and tap shoes, witty one liners and gaudy gags. While a lot of older shows have become dated, parts of Anything Goes have been adapted while preserving the charm and sincerity of the original,” Selwood said. “There’s something quintessentially Broadway about tap dancing. I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t feel uplifted by a tap-number. It must be magic! It’s big theatre in our intimate space in the showgrounds. This production will be so close you can touch it. Literally!” 

A live orchestra and cast of local talent will breathe new life into Cole Porter’s sparkling score, featuring classics like I Get A Kick Out of You, You’re the Top and the show stopping Anything Goes. Musical Director Jacob Cavanough said that Anything Goes was a true testament to Porter’s writing brilliance and has certainly stood the test of time. 

“Cole Porter understood that great musical writing is the marriage, or perhaps love affair, of both great music and great words,” Cavanough said. “He makes you think, hope, blush, feel and laugh until you’re dizzily satisfied but left wanting more. He was a brilliant wordsmith and seemed to effortlessly write music with energy and character. He fused them together to tell wonderful yet wacky stories that plonk you straight into a world of his own invention; exotic yet strangely familiar. We have an incredible, hot nine-piece band of pure energy and talent playing the show and supporting our amazing cast. The score is a real joy and our band brings Porter’s music to life with all the nuance and mayhem it deserves,” he said. 

Ms Selwood agreed, saying “We’re laughing a lot in rehearsals, and if we can bring even half as much of the joy we feel to the audience each night, then this is entertainment not to be missed! I can’t wait to share this, one of my favourite shows, with audiences at Phoenix.”

For ticketing and further information, visit the Phoenix Ensemble website

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