Tag Archives: Kurt Phelan


This Friday, May 22 from 8pm USA/EST Kurt Phelan will perform his one night only event cabaret FROM NYC with LOVE. The cabaret is a musical love letter from NYC and a huge hug from the epicentre of this global hurdle, where Kurt has been living and working for the past year, stirring up the scene in such shows as R’ent’ and directing and starring in Mondays at the Pub at the iconic Joes Pub. 

May 22 is also Kurt’s birthday and his last night in Manhattan before he makes the journey back to Australia to care for his father, which means a mandatory 14-day solitary quarantine. So, it seems the perfect night to celebrate a send-off with a cabaret! Tune in for an hour of fun, song, interactive Q&A, stories and that cheeky brand of cabaret for which he has become so well known in NYC and back home. 

“As I sit in my NYC apartment doing zoom meetings and looking down the barrel of being alone in a hotel for 14 days. I realise that I would like to give you all a parting gift. Isolation gave us all time to think. I found myself reminiscing and becoming very nostalgic. When it came time to step outside my apartment the city felt somewhat magical. Mostly everything is closed and our industry is gone, but even through all of this NYC smiles. I wanted to share this with you all, celebrate my birthday and say goodbye to my NYC family whilst sending love to my Aussie one. It has been a long time since many of my Aussie family, friends and fans have been able to see a show of mine. Being able to stream a new show enables me to bring together everyone I care for from across the globe in the best way I can imagine spending my birthday; and last moments in NYC before this epic journey home.” 

From NYC with LOVE will be performed by Kurt Phelan along-side his husband, Emmy Award-winning composer Lance Horne, live from their house on the Upper West Side from 8pm EST Friday 22 May (Saturday 23 May from 10am EST/AUS) To watch go to Facebook-KurtPhelanAus or via his youtube channel or find the links here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWd0SprUXshP00iRY1Hrrrg https://m.facebook.com/KurtPhelanAus/ And it can also be enjoyed after the live stream on either platform. 

Tune in and enjoy this celebration, live from NYC direct to the comfort of your lounge room.




Dirty Dancing @ The Lyric

Kurt Phelan (Johnny), Kirby Burgess (Baby) and Natasha Coote (Penny) in DIRTY DANCING. Pic Jeff Busby
Kurt Phelan (Johnny), Kirby Burgess (Baby) and Natasha Coote (Penny) in the new production of Elanor Bergstein’s DIRTY DANCING directed by James Powell. Pics Jeff Busby

‘I have had the time of my life and I’ve never felt this way before’ sums up my reaction to DIRTY DANCING. This is the classic stage show based on the hit movie of the same name, written by Eleanor Bergstein.

Both the last production in Sydney in 2004, which I saw twice, and the present revival have been unique, very special and faultless.

Continue reading Dirty Dancing @ The Lyric


John Worthing (Michael Whalley) and Gwendolyn Fairfax (Paige Gardiner) court and spark.
John Worthing (Michael Whalley) and Gwendolyn Fairfax (Paige Gardiner) court and spark.

‘I always take my diary with me when I go on trains.  I need something sensational to read’.

Oscar Wilde’s 1895  play THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST saw one of the wittiest people who ever lived at the height of his powers. It is quite simply a comic masterpiece. The humour is irrepressible, like the writer himself, who even on his deathbed, had the final say, ‘Either the curtains go, or I go’.

Satire was Wilde’s forte, his penchant for mocking the pretentiousness and preciousness of society’s ways. In EARNEST, Wilde has come up with a wonderful caricature of a society woman in the role of Lady Bracknell. Andrew Benson gives a fine comic performance as the good Lady in the current Burley Theatre Company revival, directed by Brandon Hartignago. Hartignago’s choice to have a man play Bracknell is not such an unusual choice, years ago Geoffrey Rush played the part with great success.

Michael Whalley as John Worthing and Kurt Phelan as  Algernon Moncrieff make an entertaining duo as the two young friends/scallywags/scoundrels who both, quite separately, have come up with the strategy of creating out of town people, in John’s case his wayward brother Earnest….Algernon his invalid Uncle Bunbury, whom the visit when the life becomes too ‘curly’ and they need to get away.

As cunning as these two men are, they both have soft spots for the fairer  sex. Paige Gardiner as Gwendolyn Fairfax and Katie McDonald as Cecily Cardew are the very attractive objects of their affection, and in a way they match their male counterparts in their use of feminine wiles.

Rounding out the cast Tamblyn Henderson and Ana Maria Belo showed some nice comic touches in servant/maid roles.

Director Brandon Martignago, who resets the play in the present day, delivers a bright, brassy, fast paced, very playful production. There are some interesting choices; the first scene, set in Algernon’s living room, is played out in front of a stage-wide curtain, in a very small space at the front of the stage, that the actors did well to transverse without doing any damage. For the second scene, in effect the curtain opens, to a great, wide reveal, of the garden in John Worthing’s country manor house. There are some nice touches by set designer Mason Browne, peacock chairs, tufted grass, the back wall is covered with Martinique wallpaper depicting a lush garden scene. Browne also designed the bold, character driven costumes.

My favourite scene? There are too many in this play. It’s like asking what’s my favourite Oscar Wilde quote- have you heard this one?-  ‘I can resist everything except temptation’. Ok…I will go for the scene where Algernon turns up at his friend’s county estate, and the shock on John Worthing’s face, and the ensuing comic chaos that it causes.

Recommended, Brandon Hartignago’s revival of THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST plays at the Reginald Theatre at the Seymour Centre until August 3, 2013.