Entertainment Hive 2020

Tomfoolery abounds in all its glory

Tomfoolery, the words and music of acclaimed American musician, singer-songwriter satirist and Harvard mathematician Tom Lehrer, returns to Adelaide for a limited five performance season from 18 to 22 July at the Marion Cultural Centre, Oaklands Park. The show is being reprised for a 10th Anniversary tribute to the late Michael Fuller, director and choreographer of the sell-out 2008 Adelaide Fringe season of Tomfoolery at La Boheme. Directed by Nicholas Cannon and starring Catherine Campbell, Hew Parham and Sean Weatherly with chamber pianist Mark Sandon, the show features performances of 23 of Lehrer’s most famous songs including: Poisoning Pigeons in the Park, Pollution, I Got it From Agnes, National Brotherhood Week, The Masochism Tango, The Old Dope Peddler, The Vatican Rag and We Will All Go Together When We Go. Also included will be the five songs which the deeply conservative Playford and McEwin Liberal Government controversially banned from performance by Lehrer here in Adelaide in 1960. The banned songs: Be Prepared, My Home Town, When You are Old and Grey, The Irish Ballad and I Hold Your Hand In Mine were all considered to be too naughty and controversial for the genteel sensibilities of Adelaide audiences. The Advertiser reported that Sir Lyell McEwin called Lehrer ‘Ghoul singer’ whilst years later Lehrer told The Advertiser the ban was ‘the high point of my career’.  Producer Sean Weatherly ponders if Adelaide is ready to hear the five songs the Government banned from being performed in 1960 “Perhaps the show will provide a test for Steven Marshall’s ‘tough on crime’ policies, when we will deliberately defy that proclamation banning the five songs,’’ Weatherly says. “When you listen to the songs today, almost 60 year later, it’s very hard to tell why they were banned at all, but they are still clever pieces.’’ Catherine Campbell is best known for her performances in Gentlemen Prefer Curves and My Blue Angel: Marlene Dietrich and the winner of two Advertiser Fringe Awards for Excellence. While Hew Parham is a graduate of Flinders University Drama Centre and became part of the multi award winning Berlin Cabaret playing the naïve Rudi with his infamous Potato/Potato, Gibberish Opera and Mime Saw routines. He was the first Australian Clown to be accepted into New York Clown Theatre Festival and the Sangenauy Fringe in Quebec. Sean Weatherly returns from Melbourne, following his hit with Price Check! The Musical, which premiered at the Bakehouse in 2016. Tomfoolery: The Words and Music of Tom Lehrer, Marion Cultural Centre, 287 Diagonal Road, Oaklands Park, 18-22 July, various evening and matinee performance times. Bookings: (08) 8375 6855 or online at http://www.marionculturalcentre.com.au/ 
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