Kinky Boots

by | Sep 10, 2022

Review by Jody Miller

 

Packemin Productions launched its kinkiest show yet to the stage with the global hit musical…Kinky Boots! Winner of six Tony Awards (including Best Musical), Kinky Boots features a Tony-winning score by Cyndi Lauper and a hilarious, uplifting book by four-time Tony winner Harvey Fierstein.

Based on the 2005 movie Kinky Boots the musical follows the story of Charlie Price (Adam Rennie), who turns a debilitated shoe factory left by his father into a triumph after catering for a niche market… a drag queen named Lola’s (Nat Jobe) need for thigh-high red boots which offer “two-and-a-half feet of irresistible tubular sex”. A story that displays how Lola overcomes prejudice and social norms of the warehouse while sashaying his way to Milan, where the collapsing business is saved in a fabulous manner.

The unlikely pair finds that they have more in common than they had ever dreamed possible and discovers that when you change your mind about someone, you can change your whole world….

And that is what the cast of Kinky Boots did, receiving a standing ovation on their opening night performance.

Adam Rennie succeeds in playing a multi-faceted Charlie Price. Rennie’s stunning vocals are bold and clear whilst expressing Charlie’s passion, particularly in ‘Soul Of A Man’. He presents a remarkable contrast to Lola, bringing his own Interpretation of the role.

Star of the show Nat Jobe does not disappoint as the glamorous Lola, demanding the stage at each appearance… as Charlie says, “When she leaves the room, there is a massive hole where she used to be”…and isn’t that the truth! Jobe bewilders the audience with his stunning vocals, sassy demeanour and radiating confidence. He seamlessly transferred to a vulnerable Simon performing ‘I’m not my father’s son’, with his physicality showing the depth behind his character.

Backing up Lola is a strong ensemble of 8 ‘Angels’ performed by Ethan Dzang, Jackson Bunting, Cameron Boxall, David Green, Tom Gustard, Olivier Rahmé, James Tolhurst and Damon Wilson. They are an integral part of the production, all showing their own unique style with not a weak player amongst them and not an eyelash out of place.

Krystal Meyer plays Charlie’s fiancé Nicola with a lack of compassion and disengagement, showing the true division between Nicola and Charlie. Laura Garrick plays a very smitten Lauren, delivering the humorous ‘History of wrong guys’.

Packemin assembled a strong and adept ensemble, matching the vast amount of energy and intensity displayed on stage.

Stand-out performances come from Tana Laga’aia playing the verile ‘Don’, portraying a solid case of toxic masculinity before humbly accepting Lolas’ challenge ‘to accept someone for who they are, anyone at all’; Penny Stewart, who portrays an overzealous ‘Trish’, exhibits a strong performance capturing the homely feel of the price family business; and David Tucker who plays factor manager ‘George’ who stuns audiences with his comedic timing and commitment to his work.

Producer Neil Gooding states that they “have a creative team of enormous skill and dedication” and that they do! Leading the creative team is the talented Jessica Fallico, who is no stranger to the Packemin production team, directing the show with precision and making great use of the phenomenal CLOC set. Cameron Boxall, who plays one of Lolas Angels, stepped in as Choreographer after working as assistant choreographer for numerous Packemin Productions, bringing pure joy to the stage with a sassy and fresh take on the production. A superb 12-piece orchestra is led by Musical Director Peter Hayward, alongside Associate MD Jayne Hamilton, which does not miss a beat, leaving the audience dancing in their seats. Sean Clarke’s superior lighting design, capturing the depth of this heartfelt story is a highlight in the production, alongside the creative mastery of Audrey Currie and Karen Lamont-Barnett in a spectacle of costumes, wigs and makeup.

Whether you are a die-hard fan of the movie or wish to dance along to Cindi Lauper’s original score, there is a lot to love about this high-energy show. Kinky Boots contains an important message of acceptance in a world full of inequality which is applicable to all…When you change your mind, you can change your whole world!

Kinky Boots by Packemin Productions will be running for a limited season from 9th-24th of September 2022 at Riverside Theatres Parramatta.

https://riversideparramatta.com.au/show/kinky-boots/

FACEBOOK:    facebook.com/packeminproductions

TWITTER:        twitter.com/packeminpro

INSTAGRAM:   instagram.com/packeminprods

#PackeminProds

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