La Cage Aux Folles Returns

Rebecca Varidel
18th Mar 2023

Winner of 11 Tony Awards the hit Broadway musical LA CAGE AUX FOLLES returns to Sydney at the State Theatre from 19 April for one week only. This acclaimed production, which had a brief preview season earlier this year, stars one of Australia’s most versatile stage and screen performers, five-time Helpmann Award winner Paul Capsis in the lead role of Albin, and internationally renowned singer and actor Michael Cormick (Beauty and The Beast, The Phantom Of The Opera) as his husband Georges. Zoë Ventoura (Home and Away, Packed To The Rafters) will play Marie Dindon, and bright new star Noah Mullins (Jagged Little Pill, West Side Story) will play Georges and Albin’s son Jean-Michel. Showstopping sensation Lucia Mastrantone (Looking For Alibrandi, The Harp in the South) is back playing multiple characters including the stylish restaurant owner Jacqueline.

La Cage aux Folles is a traditional Broadway musical with big, brassy dance numbers, yet it was revolutionary in many ways. Opening on Broadway in 1983, it broke barriers for gay representation by becoming the first hit Broadway musical centred on a homosexual relationship. The show’s act one finale, I Am What I Am received praise as a "gay anthem" and has since been widely recorded.

Based on the 1973 French play of the same name by Jean Poiret, La Cage aux Folles boasts infectious melodies by Jerry Herman (Hello Dolly, Mame) and a hysterical book by Harvey Fierstein (Kinky Boots, Torch Song Trilogy). The show tells the story of a gay couple who run a St Tropez drag club. When their (heterosexual) son brings his fiancée’s ultraconservative parents for dinner, chaos and hilarity ensues.

The original Broadway production ran for more than four years and won six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book. The success of the musical spawned a West End production and several international runs, and the box-office smash-hit film The Birdcage. Subsequent revivals have garnered considerable success, winning the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical in both 2004 and 2010, as well as the Olivier Award in London for Best Musical Revival in 2008.

Showtune Productions presents this all-new Australian production, with direction by Riley Spadaro (The Italians, This Bitter Earth), choreography by Veronica Beattie George (The Boy From Oz, Guys and Dolls), musical consultation by Michael Tyack AM (Come From Away, Chicago) with musical direction by Paul White (Matilda, Cats) fronting an 8-piece band, costume design by James Browne (Blanc de Blanc, Hair), set design by Grace Deacon (Destroy She Said, Never Closer), lighting design by Phoebe Pilcher (The Bridges of Madison County, Never Closer), sound design by Anthony Lorenz (Hair, In The Heights), and wig and makeup design by Drew-Elizabeth Johnstone (Les Girls, Cabaret The Musical).

“It is so wonderful to have La Cage aux Folles play the gorgeous historic State Theatre, a match made in heaven. This show will be fabulous at The State, as the title song perfectly says of our night club ‘Its rather gawdy but it also rather grand’. I am so excited that more people will get to see this hysterical and special show. So, open your eyes, you have arrived at La Cage aux Folles” said producer David M. Hawkins.