Presented by Promise
Reviewed 7 November 2015
Last Saturday night I was privileged to attend a concert put together and performed by the young people of the popular Promise group. None of these youngsters is over 19 years of age – none of the performers, nor the production team; which, in this case, was director Ben Francis (16), musical director Serena Martino-Williams (17) and choreographers Douglas Wiseman (19) and Hannah Dandie (15). In fact, the only persons involved who don’t qualify as a teenagers are the director’s mother, Trish Francis, who handles their bookings, Craig Williams, who supplied audio visual support and the guest speakers from the charity, Beyond Blue, Lane Hinchcliffe and John Maguire.
The whole production was professionally handled; not just on stage but also from the moment you collected your tickets and were shown to your seat. The smartly dressed ushers turned out to be the cast, already decked out in their smart white shirts and blue ties. The girls looked equally smart in their blue dresses and with the room decorated to match, the scene was set to raise money for a very worthwhile charity.
They perfumed many numbers from a host of stars, some from the pop world and others from theatre. Maria Carey, Cindi Lauper, Pharrell Williams, Paul Simon, Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga were just a few of the artists covered. There were just too many highlights to mention them all, but I particularly enjoyed the whole cast numbers like Don’t Stop Believing (the opener) and Amazing Grace/My Chains Are Gone which opened the second act. The harmonies were lovely and they left us with You’ll Never Walk Alone, so beautiful!
Ethan Schembri was a star at twelve years old (the youngest) with his version of Count On Me, while the female cast tackled Stronger (Kelly Clarkson) and Jordan Tomljenovic led the males in a version of Que Sera by Justice Crew. Laura Williams more than did justice to True Colours; Paris Anderson gave us a beautiful version of Smile (Charlie Chaplin); Emma Kavanagh gave us a strong rendition of Hero from Maria Carey; and Connor Olsson-Jones sang with Emma Wilczek in I See The Light from Tangled.
Yes, folks you missed a great show, but these young performers are going to be around for a while (or at least until they get snapped up by people who will pay them money to do this) and Promise has made a promise to bring us more next year!
Reviewed by Fran Edwards
Your Twitter: @franeds
Venue: Burnside Ballroom, Burnside
Season: 7 November
Tickets: Adult $20