‘Little Shop Of Horrors’
– on until June 6
Q&A with CANDICE VAN LITSENBORGH (Audrey)
What do you personally love about ‘Little Shop of Horrors’?
I grew up watching the movie and also played Chiffon in my high school production, so firstly there’s a lot of nostalgia involved. I love how off-the-wall and unexpected the central love story is. Seymour and Audrey aren’t your typical romantic leads. They’re a bit older, a bit rougher and they’ve lived lives that make you desperate, as an audience member, for them to have some level of happiness. So the pay-off is huge when there’s even the slightest glimmer of hope for them.
Tell us a little about your role and how you prepared for it.
Audrey works at Mushnick’s skid row florist. She’s a sort of Fay Wray/Marilyn Monroe/Goldie Hawn type character, but with all feelings of self-worth removed. She’s the epitome of sweetness and kindness and hopelessly in love with Seymour. The script and score are so rich with the B-grade horror films that the show references and the actresses the writers drew from when creating her, that that was a natural place to start with research. I approached the role as if it were a drama before I delved into the comedy. I think you have to approach ‘Little Shop’ with total honesty and empathy or it won’t work. Funny as the show is, she is still a tragic character and I didn’t want to gloss over the fact that she is an abused and very broken woman.
Tell us a little about your cast mates and how you guys gelled in rehearsals.
They’re a phenomenally talented bunch. Many of us come from very different worlds within the entertainment industry – from stand-up to film and TV, to recording artists and of course musical theatre performers. But there is such care for and commitment to the work and a respect for what each of us bring to the table, that I think we all push each other to be more prepared and more on the ball on an on-going basis.
One of the exciting things about watching a musical at Theatre on the Bay is the intimacy of the venue – it gives everything a heightened immediacy. What’s it like as a performer having the audience in such close proximity?
I’ve been lucky enough to be part of five musicals at Theatre in the Bay and intimacy is exactly the right word. With a venue that size you have nowhere to hide. You can’t fake anything or be less than 100% committed to everything you’re doing. One wrong step, one moment that isn’t truthful and the audience sees it and then they won’t trust you and the story you’re telling. So having the audience a few feet from you, I think helps me be more vulnerable and open in the moment.
– June 10 to 27
Craig Urbani returns to the local stage as one of Britain’s most loved comedians
Don’t miss this brand new production of Tim Whitnall’s Olivier Award-winning play starring Craig Urbani ((SA and UK: ‘HAIR’, ‘Buddy Holly’, ‘Kiss Me Kate’, ‘Contact’; TV: ‘Isidingo’) as comedy icon, Eric Morecambe. Directed by Alan Swerdlow, the show is a moving, often hilarious tale about one of Britain’s best-loved entertainers: from humble beginnings in Music Hall to 28 million viewers on Christmas Day, it’s the heart-warming, tear-jerking, laughter-inducing story of the man what brought us the sunshine. What do you think of it so far? Brilliant!
The production is a whistle-stop tour of the life of John Eric Bartholomew OBE, best known as one half of the cherished comedy duo Eric and Ernie, Morecambe and Wise, a partnership that lasted from 1941 until Morecambe’s death.
Morecambe took his stage name from his home town, the seaside resort of Morecambe, where a statue of the popular comedian stands, unveiled by the Queen in 1999.
Five star reviews!
“Hilarious!” – London Times
“Glows with affection. An utter delight. Never mind writing a prescription for Prozac. Doctors should be able to dispense free tickets for ‘Morecambe’. I have rarely experienced a warmer, funnier or more touching one-man show.” – Daily Telegraph
“You don’t have to know your show-biz history to get the point. This is a show that bubbles with life and laughter. When I saw it the audience stood as one to applaud it.” – British Theatre Guide