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At The Hayes Podcast

At The Hayes is a regular podcast featuring behind the scenes scoops and in depth interviews with performers, directors, producers and other creative people. Hosted by Hayes Theatre Co in Sydney.

At The Hayes is available for download through iTunes. Click on the logo below to listen.

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Ben is an arts and entertainment journalist who writes for Daily Review. Ben will be writing editorials about the many different aspects of musical theatre and cabaret. His editorials will be part of our bi monthly newsletters and will be posted on our website.

When I was 12 years old and first listened to the original cast recording of Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera, I came to a sudden and clear realisation: the world has a way of casting certain groups of people into certain roles, and people have a tendency to just play our their assigned roles. The expectations that society sets for a person are often inevitably the expectations they meet.

Howard Ashman and Alan Menken are the two men behind Little Shop of Horrors, the breakthrough hit for the pair who would go on to be at the forefront of the “Disney Renaissance” of the early 1990s. But they’ve both had very fascinating careers before and after Little Shop. Here’s our quick fact sheet of everything you need to know about these two extraordinary men of musical theatre.

 

There’s a clear and marked trend on musical theatre stages around the world right now: musicals adapted from films are becoming more and more prominent and make up a significant chunk of the market.

It really doesn’t make a lot of sense that some of the greatest Christmas standards have emerged from musicals. Many people can’t stand Christmas songs and only tolerate them during the festive season. But plenty of the most (and a few of the least) enduring Christmas songs were originally written for shows designed to play through all seasons.

And that’s not even mentioning the songs from musicals written specifically as Christmas musicals – like A Christmas Story and Elf.

So here’s our selection of the most notable festive songs born from musicals.

As we reach the halfway point of the Hayes Cabaret Season, we thought we’d take this chance to have an “up close and personal” look at the “up close and personal” art form. We also answer a few burning questions you might have, starting with one pretty big one.

Jonathan Larson’s enduring and beloved rock opera Rent holds a special place in the hearts of musical theatre lovers around the world – a startling achievement when you consider that Larson was writing about a very specific community in a very specific time and place. But the musical holds an important place in the history of American theatre more broadly, as a winner of the prestigious Pulitzer Prize.

 

Australians love musical theatre. In 2013, 22 percent of the population attended a musical or cabaret, compared with the 20 percent who attended traditional or contemporary theatre. And the economic impact of the industry is massive; each year Australians buy around $200 million worth of tickets to major musicals.