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Episode Playlist
Backstage - 31-08-2022( 0:59:33)       
Episode Information
In our final (for now) episode we have a yarn with Dave Moore — director of 'The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen's Guild Dramatic Society Production of Macbeth' for Te Awamutu Light Operatic Society (TALOS). And we finally get to the one musical that's on Mel's liist of faves (but nobody else's)... Love Never Dies. And as the lights dim and the curtain begins to fall... we pause for applause, bow and say adieu. And thanks for joining us Backstage. See you next year.
Published: 1/09/2022 12:30:00 p.m.
Backstage - 24-08-2022( 0:58:10)       
Episode Information
Theatrical superstitions abound and we give a bit of background on four of the most common ones this week. And our Musical of the Week is Singin' in the Rain – based on the evergreen and much-loved movie of the same name.
Published: 25/08/2022 12:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Starlight Express - 10-08-2022( 0:57:6)       
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Some called it 'hell on wheels' but others really love Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1984 train story 'Starlight Express'... so we decided to see for ourselves by making it our Musical of the Week. We also revisit the question of who should get to play trans-gender or other diverse characters. It's a conversation that will never end.
Published: 11/08/2022 4:15:00 p.m.
Backstage - Unchback of Notre Dame - 03-08-2022( 0:53:54)       
Episode Information
The bells... The bells... Our Musical of the Week is the timeless story of Quasimodo – The Hunchback of Notre Dame – developed from the Disney animated film into a very successful musical production. It's also a favourite of one of our studio guests this week. Kate Martin-Booker (Mel's wife) loves the show and tells us why, then she and Nick Hall tell us all about the play they're in at Cambridge's Gaslight Theatre, 'The Things I Know to be True' by Andrew Bovell.
Published: 3/08/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Jagged Little Pill - 20-07-2022( 0:49:3)       
Episode Information
We talk this week about challenging content... whether there's an audience (we say absolutely yes), and even whether there's a place for challenging content on stage (again, absolutely, yes from us!)... It's an on-going discussion and it also leads into our Musical of the Week — Jagged Little Pill.
Published: 20/07/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 13-07-2022( 0:58:52)       
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It's the Greatest Show on Earth! Backstage, of course! Coincidentally, our Musical of the Week is 'Barnum' — all about the man who used that cachphrase for his own entertainment empire, PT Barnum. And we have a yarn about those who aren't necessarily theatre-doers but who still like to particpate as theatre-goers... and a bit about Agatha Christie's ageless mystery thriller, The Mousetrap.
Published: 15/07/2022 9:45:00 a.m.
Backstage - 06-07-2022( 0:54:59)       
Episode Information
Our Musical of the Week tells the story of the show that beat the odds when it came to the pandemic — 'Six' relates the stories of the six wives of Henry VIII (with a few twists) and has been wowing audiences since its debut. Relevant, clever and the must-see show in the UK right now. And we talk about the issue of how you handle unpalatable dialogue on stage. Cut it? Leave it in? Paraphrase...? What about the playwright's intentions?
Published: 6/07/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 29-06-2022( 0:55:54)       
Episode Information
The Riff Raff statue's champion, and erudite man-about-town, Mark Servian lets down his guard and tells us what keeps him excited about the Waikato theatre scene after nearly 30 years, and we explore the world of Mean Girls in our Musical of the Week.
Published: 29/06/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 16-06-2022( 0:56:50)       
Episode Information
We started a discussion this week about the Waikato Regional Theatre – the pros, the cons – and hope to keep it going over the weeks ahead. We also talked about 'Sherlock Holmes and the Baker Street Irregulars', and 'An Oak Tree'... plus our Musical of the Week is the little-known 'Tuck Everlasting'. Curious? Check it out.
Published: 16/06/2022 2:30:00 p.m.
Backstage - 08-06-2022( 0:56:35)       
Episode Information
One of the Waikato region's most recognised theatre practitioners, Nick Wilkinson is our special guest, discussing acting, directing, Shrek, ballroom dancing and hating auditions. He also chose our Musical of the Week (a personal favourite of his) The Full Monty.
Published: 8/06/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Groundhog Day - 01-06-2022( 0:57:10)       
Episode Information
It's deja vu all over again! Groundhog Day is our Musical of the Week (music and lyrics by the amazing Tim Minchin!) and we hear some no-nonsense talk about the craft of acting from one of the very best in the business, either on stage or on screen, Dame Judi Dench.
Published: 1/06/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 25-05-2022( 0:56:57)       
Episode Information
Another new-ish face to the region, in the form of Lily Berry, joins us for a yarn and we explore her choice of Musical of the Week... the perennial favourite of many, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Well, it had to be done sooner or later...
Published: 25/05/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 18-05-2022( 0:57:32)       
Episode Information
Who lives in a pineapple under the sea...? Thanks to our guest last week (Jonty Climo) our Musical of the Week this time is Spongebob Squarepants — is it any good? You have to listen to find out. We also tap in to the wisdom of celebrated English actor Bill Nighy, and give a comprehensive round up of what's hitting the stages in our patch over the coming couple of months... there's a LOT!
Published: 18/05/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 11-05-2022( 0:50:49)       
Episode Information
When there's a new kid on the block, you want to know everything about them, right? We put musician, actor, and all-round theatre junkie Jonty Climo under the 'scope to find out why he chose to start calling Hamilton home recently, and what he's into at the moment. And American Idiot is our Musical of the Week – proving you can take a band's concept album and turnit into pretty bloody good theatre!
Published: 11/05/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Cruel Intentions - 04-05-2022( 0:55:43)       
Episode Information
Matamata Dramatic Society's President Julie Taylor joins us for a yarn about the theatre's activities and how they're keeping themselves active these days... turns out they're going full steam ahead! This week we go all nostalgic for a time 30 years ago with our Musical of the Week (Mel's choice) — 'Cruel Intentions – The 90s Musical' ...an adaptation of an adaptation of an adaptation of an original story from the 18th century.
Published: 4/05/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Blood Brothers - 27-04-2022( 0:57:46)       
Episode Information
Did you ever hear the story of the Johnstone twins...? This week's Musical of the Week is the extraordinary Liverpool drama Blood Brothers. Our Scouse pal Jacinta Parsons joins us to talk about what it is that makes this show so compelling, and we hear from the director of the Hamilton Musical Theatre production, Angela Walker – who's so obsessed with the show, she's seen it 25 times!
Published: 27/04/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - You're A Good Man Charlie Brown - 20-04-2022( 0:56:1)       
Episode Information
The dynamic duo are back together again — Mel is all refreshed after her honeymoon... We have a feel-good Musical of the Week this time, in the form of You're A Good Man Charlie Brown. We also feature more of Thames MAD's Diane Connors, talking about how they operate as a smaller theatre society. And our list of What's On Around the Place Soon-ish is absolutely HUGE!
Published: 20/04/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Kinky Boots - 13-04-2022( 0:57:56)       
Episode Information
Guest co-host this week, while Mel is on her honeymoon, is Jono Freebairn, who chose Kinky Boots as the Musical of the Week. We also meet Diane Connors, President of Thames Music and Drama (Thames MAD) and director of their upcoming production of Mamma Mia! Plus we cover the ins and outs of how to perform dying on stage.
Published: 13/04/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Priscilla, Queen of the Desert - 06-04-2022( 0:52:41)       
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After a couple of weeks being MIA, it's back to more of what you love about being Backstage... All glitz and glamour with our Musical of the Week, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert... and we looked for a play about a wedding, just for fun, and came up with a beauty – Blood Wedding! Oh the drama of it all!
Published: 6/04/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 16-03-2022( 0:56:37)       
Episode Information
Heard of the huge budget NZ musical 'City of 100 Lovers'...? Nah, we hadn't either, but it was a thing. And was supposed to be running forever at Sky City Theatre, but it turned out to be a total dog and got cancelled, leaving a very bad taste in a lot of people's mouths. We tell all in this week's episode — our 100th! And oh yes... Mel gives us all you needed to know about Moulin Rouge — our Musical of the Week.
Published: 16/03/2022 9:45:00 p.m.
Backstage - 09-03-2022( 0:53:47)       
Episode Information
We went somewhere so you don't have to. After dissecting how to write a musical last week, it was only fair that we examine how to write a play... and we delved into advice from the website writerscookbook.com ... take it from us, it doesn't deliver what you might think it should. Balancing that, our Musical of the Week is the largely unknown but delightful 'Violet' starring Sutton Foster.
Published: 9/03/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 02-03-2022( 0:53:40)       
Episode Information
What does it take to write a musical? And where the hell do you go if you wnat to learn how? We don't have all the answers, but we discuss some people's experiences in the hope that you may be inspired. And for light relief... our Musical of the Week is the one and only Hairspray!
Published: 2/03/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 23-02-2022( 1:0:50)       
Episode Information
Our Musical of the Week is another Sondheim creation... Company. And we've stepped away from our usual format of drip-feeding some songs through the podcast. Instead, we include, in its entirety, the NPR Tiny Desk (Home) Concert by the cast of the 2021 revival of the show. And we have plenty to say about the value of Community Theatre.
Published: 25/02/2022 12:45:00 p.m.
Backstage - 16-02-2022( 0:55:42)       
Episode Information
Again we ask... why do we do what we do? Given how tenuous things can be, why do we keep wanting to put it out there? Well, it seems you can't stop the human instinct to create. Just as well too, if you ask us! And our Musicla of the Week is 2012's Dogfight.
Published: 16/02/2022 6:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 02-02-2022( 0:57:6)       
Episode Information
Fresh for 2022... We take a close-up look at the roles of Swings and Understudies, and discuss how maybe community theatre is going to have to get into the habit of making sure they have such valuable people in their casts as we learn to perform in a Covid-affected environment. It ain't just for professional productions anymore. And our Musical of the Week is Amélie – based on the hit 2001 French film of the same name.
Published: 2/02/2022 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 29-12-2021( 0:59:48)       
Episode Information
Our final shwo for 2021, so we went LIVE ON AIR for the first time, just for kicks. An hour of us yarning about the year that's passed (almost) and the year to come... plus a carefully chosen selection of some of our favourite songs from our favourite musicals to boot!
Published: 30/12/2021 11:00:00 a.m.
Backstage - 22-12-2021( 0:56:53)       
Episode Information
Ho Ho Ho — we're full of good cheer in our penultimate show for the year, with only three sleeps to go till Christmas! What a year it's been... We riff on the subject of Christmas and theatre, and our Musical of the Week is Scrooge! Just one of several takes on the theme of the Dickens story 'A Christmas Carol'.
Published: 22/12/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 15-12-2021( 0:57:29)       
Episode Information
Banned! Restricted! We explore a few plays that have tested our attitudes towards all manner of shocking stuff over the centuries... like, sexuality, women being decisive and stuff like that. And we go into shades of pink with Legally Blonde, our Musical of the Week!
Published: 15/12/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 01-12-2021( 0:57:5)       
Episode Information
Being in the Orange Zone means we can at last physically catch up with old friends, and they don't come much... friendlier than Ray Powell – co-founder (with Charlotte Isaac) of Bold Theatre! He talks about being a producer, dealing with uncertainty and future plans... well, some of them anyway. AND our Musical of the Week is the current Netflix must-see show, Tick, Tick... Boom!
Published: 1/12/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 24-11-2021( 0:56:23)       
Episode Information
Stomp-stomp-clap, stomp-stomp-clap... Immediately recognisable and a perfect way for us to say that this week We Will, We Will, Rocky You! Our Musical of the Week is the hugely popular jukebox musical based on the music of Queen. Plus we step back into the Writer's Room, profiling the incredible Emily Duncan.
Published: 24/11/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 17-11-2021( 1:15:26)       
Episode Information
Introducing our extended mix podcast this week! Actor, Director, Tutor, all-round renaissance man Kyle Chuen dishes the goods on Assassins, working with performing arts students at Wintec, and looking ahead to Bold Theatre's 2022 production, when he'll be co-directing (with the uber-talented Courteney Mayall) That Bloody Woman! And funnily enough... that's our Musical of the Week too!
Published: 17/11/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 10-11-2021( 0:55:0)       
Episode Information
This week's musical explores the story of Anastasia Romanov... based on the Disney movie, how does the stage show stack up? And Geoff Turkington checks in on the success of the crowd funding appeal for the Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival AND he lets us in on one of the hot drawcards for the '22 festival!
Published: 10/11/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 03-11-2021( 0:54:47)       
Episode Information
What went wrong for My Fair Lady, after so many years as a crowd pleaser? And what's the first rule of the Backstage Actor's Studio? We can reveal all in this week's episode!
Published: 3/11/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 27-10-2021( 0:57:13)       
Episode Information
It's Covid Catch-Up Time! The multi-talented and indespensible Deb Nudds, from The Meteor Theatre joins us to talk about locking down 2021-style... and we take a close look at our Musical of the Week — I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change.
Published: 27/10/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 20-10-2021( 0:50:33)       
Episode Information
Clothes maketh... the show! Great costume designers are worth their weight in gold, to any production. Unsung heroes a lot of the time, today we shine our little spotlight on their work. And we leap, tumble and spin our way into the Musical of the Week — Bring it On: The Musical.
Published: 20/10/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 13-10-2021( 0:57:20)       
Episode Information
Challenging times for the Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival — Festival Director Geoff Turkington talks about pulling it together for 2022, and because it's Halloween this month (not really because of that) our Musical of the Week is Ghost – The Musical.
Published: 13/10/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 29-09-2021( 0:58:14)       
Episode Information
Still stunning, gripping, relevant and thought-provoking, even after 64 years... our Musical of the Week is the brilliant West Side Story! And we look at the intricate characters that make up the drama in our (occasional) Play of the Week – August: Osage County.
Published: 29/09/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - Young Frankenstein - 22-09-2021( 0:55:48)       
Episode Information
Whatever you do, don't mention Frau Blücher... Our Musical of the Week is Young Frankenstein (The Musical) and we go into the critical importance or props — why they're such an incredibly important part of the theatrical experience and why it's so vital they're done right!
Published: 22/09/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 15-09-2021( 0:50:5)       
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The rich and almost ignored history of Māori theatre and how it was given new life... and Into The Woods is our Musical of the Week.
Published: 15/09/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 08-09-2021( 0:52:59)       
Episode Information
What the Fu— ? This week we get into the subject of cussing on stage, so buckle in... The goalposts are always effing-well changing! And our Musical of the Week is the 1972 classic, Pippin!
Published: 8/09/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 01-09-2021( 0:57:53)       
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Girl From The North Country is our Musical of the Week (Dylan's music and the Great Depression) plus we have a play about a hat and our good friend Jono Freebairn virtually drops in for a korero.
Published: 1/09/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 18-08-2021( 0:55:23)       
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Not for the faint of heart, we explore the darkness of the play 'The Pillowman' — plus we feature a sampling of Tolstoy with our Musical of the Week, 'Natasha Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812'... We're not afraid of the big stuff! Stay safe and wear a mask!
Published: 18/08/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 11-08-2021( 0:57:22)       
Episode Information
Bootlegging... hands up who's seen at least a little bit of a bootleg recording of a major show! It's illegal, of course, so why do people keep doing it? Our Musical of the Week this time is the heart-warming story of a boy who wanted to dance — Billy Elliot. (You might have to search YouTube for a bootleg copy if you want to see the actual show though!)
Published: 11/08/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 28-07-2021( 0:57:23)       
Episode Information
You can't do everything and be in everything — sometimes you REALLY need to take a break. We discuss when it's a good thing to say 'No'... And our Musical of the Week is Pretty Woman: The Musical. Yeah, we hadn't heard of it either!
Published: 28/07/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 21-07-2021( 0:53:40)       
Episode Information
We take you from the tortured, fractuous relationship of Martha and George in Edward Albee's 'Who's Afraid of Virginnia Woolf?' (our Play of the Day) to the exotic world of ancient Egypt in 'Elton John and Tim Rice's Aida' (our Musical of the Week)... Backstage this week is a jam-packed journey from start to finish!
Published: 21/07/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 14-07-2021( 0:55:46)       
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How big is too big... and how small is too small? We discuss fitting the production to the venue, and at last have chosen one of Mike's least favourite shows as our Musical of the Week — Kismet! (Yuck)
Published: 14/07/2021 5:00:00 p.m.
Backstage - 07-07-2021( 0:56:10)       
Episode Information
Reviewing the reviewers... what is the role of a critic these days? Should we even have them? And we celebrate the circle of life with our Musical of the Week — The Lion King.
Published: 7/07/2021 5:00:00 p.m.