After being lucky enough to secure tickets at the Ulumbarra theatre on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Bendigo Winter to Mary Poppins the Broardway musical we arrived early to look around. Being the first production of The Bendigo Theatre Company at the Ulumbarra Theatre we met the promotions officer in the foyer. How lovely it was to hear about the Bendigo theatre company from Bryley Savage the Publicity Manager for the show and how proud they were about their premier season with 5 sell out shows of Mary Poppins in Bendigo. Of course we bought a program wanting to support them but also an excuse to talk to more of the team. Upstairs and looking over the balcony to the entrance foyer and the line of re conditioned prison cells that make up part of the entrance to the building we found some back stage cast also selling programs. I registered for the cloak room to park my umbrella and found myself in another conversation with an usher about the pressure from the public for extra seats or more shows that just were not going to be available. Looking around before the show started I was surrounded by little old ladies and children between 4 and 10 years old all full of excitement. Next was a CCB School music teacher Mrs Cathy Moore. In chatting with here the excitement was building as she was actually in the orchestra.
Bendigo Theatre Company
The show got started and we were spellbound from the beginning. Fabulous scenery, costuming and hairstyles that personally I thought were better than Broadway, topped with a fabulous orchestra, great lighting and then they launched into “Supercalafragalisticexpialidocious” that was followed by “Anything can happen if you let it” and we were off into a journey of magical touches feeling like the ride of a lifetime and the message that “No work is important enough to overrun your life” and that parks fun and taking time to smell the roses really is why we should do anything. It wasn’t long before the Tap-dancing hit of the show then came the chimney sweep special “Chim chimminey Chim Chimminey Chim Chim Cheree” and the audience joined the feel with clapping and tapping along. The first half of the show nearly went for 2 hours and the small children were on the edge of their seats- how good it was to see this type of old fashioned entertainment for families.
Bendigo Theatre Company
Half time was a chance for Chocolate from the Bar and a moment to chat with some lovely elderly ladies in full admiration for such a very special show by the Bendigo Theatre Company. The conversations soon led to what they might do next but the Publicity Officer from Mary Poppins was no where to be found. It certainly left time to study the program and get to know the names of the very talented Bendigo youth and not so youth that have been performing in Productions at the Capital theatre for many years. I did spare a thought for those that will in the future need to travel to Bendigo to see shows like this and will be looking for Accommodation just near the Ulumbarra Theatre. Bendigo Holiday Accommodation Certainly have some fabulous options and will need to put on their website the link to the future shows at the Ulumbarra theatre for their guests.
Article by Helen Geri