Presented by: Pelican Productions
Reviewed: 2nd August 2018
With music and lyrics by the renowned Lin-Manuel Miranda, (The Heights, Hamilton) and Tom Kitt and Amanda Green (Next to Normal) Bring It On: The Musical is an exciting contemporary option for youth groups. The musical is very loosely based on the 2000 film of the same name and focuses on the competitive world of cheerleading and over-the-top team rivalries. Pelican Productions had outstanding success with this production 2017 and was awarded Best Show Youth Theatre and Best Young Performer at the Adelaide Theatre Guide Curtain Call Awards, deservedly so.
Producers Kylie Green and Jan Firth have assembled an excellent creative team and attracted a sensational young cast. Adam Goodburn has directed many youth musicals, most notably a long list of highly successful productions at Scotch College, and his magic touch is clearly evident. Rosanne Hosking ensures singing is excellent, harmonies are tight, and all voices are in fine form. Choreographer Carla Papa, ably supported by Chloe Boucher, delivers explosive choreography, complete with just the right balance of aerial stunts and dance. The band is excellent under the deft hand of Peter Johns. Together with the outstanding set and video design by Craig Williams, this team lift this community youth show to the standards of professional productions.
Scarlett Anthony reprises the role of cheer captain Campbell and is very much the star vehicle. Her rendition of One Perfect Moment is spine tingling and her characterisation is earnest and not overplayed, which would have been easy to do. She is well matched by Stephanie Cole as Danielle, head of the Jackson ‘crew’, who delivers an energetic, sassy, and compelling performance.
Also worthy of mention are Sean Jackson, who adds flair and interest with his endearing, award winning portrayal of La Cienega; the suave and charismatic Jack Conroy as Randall and Eve Green as the feisty, devilish, manipulative Eva. Billie Turner almost steals the show as hilarious Bridget. She has impeccable comic timing and great vocals and was an audience favourite.
This production can stand proudly alongside any community theatre show in Adelaide. It’s easy to forget this is a youth show and it deserves a wider audience. If you saw this show last time, see it again! If you didn’t catch it before then do not miss the opportunity in this very limited return season.
Reviewed by Trish Francis
Venue: Norwood Concert Hall
Season: Aug 2 – 5 2018
Duration: 150 Minutes with interval