Gatsby at the Green Light
A Roaring Night of Decadent Delights at Sydney Opera House
Reviewed by Chris Duncan
Step back in time and into a world of tantalising opulence with “Gatsby at the Green Light,” currently illuminating the Sydney Opera House with its breathtaking spectacle. This show is a perfect pick for adults seeking a night that’s not just about theatrics but also a touch of the ‘naughty,’ wrapped in awe and splendour.
Imagine a club where the throbbing beats and pulsating movement blend seamlessly with heart-palpitating aerial acts, decadent burlesque, and a dash of comedy. It’s not just a performance; it’s an immersive experience that captures the essence of a bygone era with a modern twist. The show brings the roaring twenties to the 2020s in an extravaganza that’s both a visual and sensory delight.
Director Craig Ilott, known for his spectacular rendition of “Amadeus” and “Velvet Rewired,” presents an innovative creation that stands out in its genre. “Gatsby at the Green Light” is a testament to his talent for weaving together various acts into a cohesive, enthralling narrative.
The show’s uniqueness lies in its diverse offerings. You can sip on a delightfully infused gin-martini while enjoying extraordinary aerial displays, toe-tapping upbeat tunes, and mesmerizing choreography. The cast, adorned in resplendent costumes, brings to life ageless vaudeville acts reimagined to cast a spell over the audience.
A highlight of the show is ARIA-nominated singer Odette, whose earthy and mystical vocals provide a soulful backdrop to the diverse performances. Her audacious covers, especially ‘Money (That’s What I Want),’ leave a lasting impression, proving her to be a standout member of an already brilliant ensemble.
While the show skims over the deeper themes of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, it compensates with an atmosphere rich in sideshow stunts and a queer twist, especially noted in the sapphic humour brought by the commanding burlesque siren, Bettie Bombshell.
“Gatsby at the Green Light” offers a variety of ticketing options to suit different preferences. For a truly immersive experience, the VIP Package is recommended. It includes stage-side cabaret table seating, a 1920s-style cocktail, and canape package served by the cast. For those who prefer to watch the party unfold from a distance, regular theatre seating is available, offering a clear view of the action.
“Gatsby at the Green Light” is more than just a show; it’s an escapade into a world where the spirit of Gatsby reigns supreme. It’s a promise of a roaring affair filled with unbridled revelry, iconic fashion, and a sensational spectacle. The show is playing an extended season at the Sydney Opera House until March 24, 2024. Don’t miss the chance to be part of this extraordinary experience, where every performance promises to be a riot of senses and emotions. Book your tickets now and stay up late with Gatsby for an unforgettable night!
Lucas Newland‘s choreography in “Gatsby at the Green Light” is a true highlight, showcasing his remarkable ability to blend the vivacious spirit of the 1920s with the cutting-edge trends of contemporary dance. His work is an embodiment of the unique joie de vivre of the era, yet it remains fresh and modern.
The dancers, under Newland’s and resident choreographer Cassie Bartho’s guidance, execute this vision flawlessly. They transition seamlessly from their roles as waitstaff to performers, delivering high-energy routines that captivate the audience. This transition is not just a change in activity but a transformation in the ambiance, bringing the spirit of the 1920s to life right amidst the guests.
What’s particularly striking is the use of the space itself. The bar, which doubles as an impromptu stage, becomes a platform for these dynamic performances. This clever use of the venue not only maximizes the available space but also immerses the audience in the experience, blurring the lines between performers and spectators.
The tap dancing segments by Bayley Graham deserves special mention. The tapping is not just technically proficient but also exudes an energy that seems to defy gravity. This high level of skill and enthusiasm adds a layer of authenticity to the homage to the 1920s, while also keeping the audience engaged and enthralled.
In crafting the mesmerizing “Gatsby at the Green Light,” co-creators and producers Stuart Couzens and Craig Ilott of Caper & Crow have assembled a formidable creative team. Directed by Craig Ilott and designed by Stuart Couzens, the show features the musical direction of Kim Moyes. Renier Jansen van Vuuren and Alfred Helm set design and production management, while Matt Marshall illuminates the stage as the lighting designer. The costumes, a visual feast, are the brainchild of Mason Browne, Rose Jurd, and Alfred. Lucas Newland‘s choreography, complemented by Cassie Bartho as the resident choreographer and Jo Cotterill‘s aerial choreography for “Wicked Game,” brings dynamic movement to the stage. The cocktails, a key element of the show’s atmosphere, are designed by Matt Whiley.
The cast is a blend of exceptional talents including Bayley Graham, Beau Sargent, Bettie Bombshell, Elke Uhd, Florian Brooks, Jemma Crump, Miranda Menzies, Odette, Oscar Kaufmann, and Zac Smith as featured performers. The service ensemble and dancers, comprising Clayton Church, Erin Gaw, Jaimie Nirvana, Tiana Vassallo, Thomas Young, Maddi Xuereb, and Willa Bell Klemm, add energy and flair to the production.
“Gatsby at the Green Light” is more than a show; it’s a parallel to our modern world, much like F. Scott Fitzgerald‘s timeless “The Great Gatsby.” Set in the rapidly evolving cultural and technological landscape of the “roaring twenties,” the novel finds echoes in today’s ever-changing world. This production aims to encapsulate the extravagance and joy of Jay Gatsby’s legendary parties. Guests at The Green Light will be treated to a spectacle of vaudeville acts reminiscent of the 1920s, yet still captivating today – from tapping and juggling to fire breathing, burlesque, and masterful aerial performances, all set to bold contemporary music and enhanced by the striking vocals of Odette.