(Seen at the preview performance on 3rd August 2019).
It is very rare that the monkey is unable to "read" a show within a few lines,
or at the most around 10 minutes in. It usually recognises quickly the
techniques and where the artistic team are taking it. This, though, had it
baffled until 30 minutes into the second half at which point all became
dazzlingly clear and the monkey was overawed at the whole thing.
re-imagined from the polite "black box" original and "chocolate box" of the most
recent tour, this is raw vibrant South American politics and the story of the
young striving for revolution without regard for consequences. Eva Person
(Samantha Pauly) could have stepped off any beach, a young woman who knows her
value and power over men - survivor and yet victim. Her simple white mini-shift
alternating with bra-top and shorts carry her through.
Pecking, sometimes annoying brother, eventually victim himself, Che (Trent
Saunders) never lets up with the strongest vocal performance of the evening. A
stunning and impressively re-imagined "Waltz For Eva And Che" demonstrating what
both can do.
In other featured roles, Agustin Magaldi (Adam Pearce) is
excitingly stereo-type breaking, his bewilderment at the adoration very real.
Juan Peron (Ektor Rivera) is understated, leaving his wife to be manipulated
into shining - the power behind the power behind the throne. Frances Mayli
McCann as his teenage mistress gets a busy "Another Suitcase In Another Hall"
and the final callous kick of Eva taking her dress as well as her place.
Soutra Gilmour gives us an inspired grandstand set and literal fireworks, Fabian
Aloise the hottest moves of Latin America combined with clever details, Jamie
Lloyd keeps the entire ensemble buzzing, watchful throughout. The final sequence
is as inventive as it can ever be, "Rainbow Tour" one of most brilliant scenes
the monkey has seen in years.
To say more would ruin it, but save to say it is breathtakingly original and
more than a match for the previous "Jesus Christ Superstar." If you liked that,
this is for you.
5 star standing ovation.