SILVER LININGS: Songs From the Silver Screen

Te Auaha, Tapere Nui, 65 Dixon Street, Te Aro, Wellington

08/12/2020 - 12/12/2020

Production Details



The Wellington Footlights Society is thrilled to announce its first production for 2020.  

A musical revue celebrating the medium of cinema through the medium of theatre, Silver Linings draws on a wide variety of songs from both movies & movie musicals.  

Coming together at the end of a complicated year, this bright and busy show offers an opportunity for people to come together to enjoy performing arts and community at a time when many people are longing to connect.

Highlights include timeless classics like ‘Don’t Rain on My Parade’ from Funny Girl, ‘As Long As He Needs Me’ from Oliver, and ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ from Meet Me in St Louis . Silver Linings also offers contemporary numbers from 21st century favourites including The Greatest Showman, Mean Girls and Frozen II. There’s something for everyone to love in this celebration of cinema through the ages.

Director Maya Handa Naff says the privilege of producing performing arts isn’t lost on a single person involved. “A little escapism is needed now more than ever, and this close to Christmas we’re delighted to share in a musical spectacle with Wellington.”

Originally from New York City, Maya is delighted to have the opportunity to make and share live theatre in a year that has been so dominated by distance and loss. “It is my dearest hope that Silver Linings will bring joy and aroha to people’s hearts the way only live performance can.”

As well as offering an opportunity for a little entertainment, joy and celebration, a portion of every ticket sold will be donated to Mary Potter Hospice. Wellington Footlights chair Laura Gardner says the Society is proud of its history of raising money for local charities, including Rainbow Youth and Youthline. “Mary Potter Hospice is one of the organisations that lost their usual street appeal dates to lockdown, and we’re so pleased to be able to give back with another fundraising production.”

The Hospice has touched the lives of countless Wellingtonians, including Society member Sam Burnard. “Mary Potter Hospice were amazing when Mum was sick. They made her comfortable and provided a space for all her whānau members to be by her side. I am proud we can do what we love and do our bit for this amazing organisation.”

Founded on principles of community, inclusiveness and a high quality experience for audiences, Wellington Footlights has been producing musical theatre in Wellington since 2014. Since its humble beginnings with a three-night gender-bending Disney song revue, Footlights has grown to produce Broadway hits like Legally Blonde the Musical, most recently producing classics My Fair Lady and Company. Silver Linings represents the Society’s passion for musical theatre and doing a little good all at once.

Silver Linings: Songs from the Silver Screen
Te Auaha, 65 Dixon Street, Wellington Central
8 – 12 December 2020
Tickets $25/30
Tickets available at ticketbooth.co.nz
https://events.ticketbooth.co.nz/event/silver-linings-songs-from-the-silver-screen


CAST
Abigail Helsby
Cassandra Tse
Clara van Wel
Ed Blunden
Emily K. Brown
Fynn Bodley-Davies
Helena Savage
India Loveday
Karen Anslow
Kirsty Huszka
Laura Gardner
Letitia Garrett
Margaret Hill
Marley Richards
Michael Stebbings
Nadia Newman
Patrick Jennings
Stacey O'Brien
Vishan Appanna
Will Collin

CREW
Director: Maya Handa Naff
Music Director: Michael Stebbings
Music Director: Jo Hodgson
Choreographer: Shereen Capper
Choreographer: Katty Lau
Production Manager: Nick Lerew
Rehearsal Stage Manager: Nick Lerew
Stage Manager: Sam Burnard
Assistant Stage Manager: Tessa Alderton
Props: Tessa Alderton
Sound Design: Patrick Barnes Sound
Lighting Designers: Patrick Barnes & Abigail Helsby
Lighting Operator: Nick Lerew
Costume Coordinator: Nadia Newman
Production Assistant: Siobhan Raisbeck
Publicity Manager: Abigail Helsby
Poster Design: Aimée Sullivan
Front of House Manager: Chris McMillan
Producer: Margaret Hill

BAND
Conductor / Oboe: Jo Hodgson
Keys 1: Hayden Taylor
Violin 1: Emily Dodd
Violin 2: Ellie Stewart
Violoncello: Logan Keggenhoff
Clarinet 1 / Alto Sax / Tenor Sax: Natalie Hunt
Clarinet 2 / Keys 2: Michael Stebbings
Trumpet 1 / Baritone / Trombone / Keys 2: Nick Garrett
Trumpet 2: Fynn Bodley-Davies
Flugelhorn: Letitia Garrett
Guitar 1: Thomas Whaley
Guitar 2: Ed Blunden
Banjo: Nadia Newman
Double Bass / Electric Bass: Rachael Hinds
Drum Kit / Percussion: Callum Riach
Keys 1 Sub: Stephen Clothier 


Theatre , Musical ,


Offers welcome dose of escapism

Review by Andrew Smith 09th Dec 2020

Hollywood musicals are polarising. Some people love ’em, others consider them a refined form of torture. Threaten them with yet another viewing of The Sound of Music, and they’ll tell you whatever you want to know.

But you’d have to be particularly hard-hearted not to enjoy Wellington Footlights’ Silver Linings: Songs from the Silver Screen. From classics like Diamonds are Forever and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas to more recent hits Apex Predator (Mean Girls) and A Cover is Not the Book (Mary Poppins Returns), it’s plain good fun. And, as if you need any other reason to go along, a portion of every ticket sale goes to the Mary Potter Hospice. [More]
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A champion team

Review by Maryanne Cathro 09th Dec 2020

As always, Footlights delivers an evening of exuberant musical entertainment. 

The show is a collection of songs from movies – some are from movie versions of musicals, some are from musicals made from movies, and some are songs that are sung in movies. There’s a big range of styles from Disney to Sondheim to Dolly Parton to Don McGlashan.

Te Auaha’s theatre is set up in the round for Silver Linings. This arrangement creates a welcome intimacy for a show delivered with joy, exuberance and wonderful ensemble pieces. With only a few black cubes and the 13-piece orchestra in the background, the space becomes whatever the cast needs it to be.

Ensemble work is one of Footlight’s strengths and the highlights of this show are when everyone is on stage weaving harmonic magic. Stand-outs for me include ‘When your Mind’s Made Up’ from Once, sung by Ed Blunden and Clara Van Wel joined by the whole cast. The vocal intensity and beauty of this extraordinary music casts a spell over the whole audience. Likewise, the unaccompanied harmonies of ‘Pure Imagination’ led by the immensely talented Michael Stebbings sets a very high standard for the second half of the show.

Ensemble choreography by Katty Lau and Shereen Capper is vibrant, energetic and always suited to the piece. India Loveday and Margaret Hill carry some beautiful dance moments, especially in ‘Anchor Me’ – included because it was in Daffodils.

My only niggle is that most of these songs are part of a narrative, and without the context of a story they are sometimes not as strong as they would be in context. Where the show works best is when the narrative is kept strong – like the lovely moment of ‘It Takes Two’: the Baker and his Wife from Into the Woods. Karen Anslow and Patrick Jennings do great justice to this piece.

And if you can’t get a talking caribou on stage then why not have an ensemble of ham-acting blokes for ‘Lost in the Woods’ – bringing 80s realness to this wonderfully OTT song.

Likewise the trio of Karen Anslow, Cassandra Tse and Kirsty Huszka deliver bang on OTT drama with ‘Diamonds are Forever’ without a whiff of ham.

I’m also going to single out Vishan Appanna for delivering some of the best vocals of the night. Not a single pitchy moment, his delivery of ‘What’s This?’ from Nightmare before Christmas sets the tone from near the top of the show.

Jo Hodgson does a stellar job of conducting the orchestra, also leading them in treat at the end that you will just have to go hear for yourself, but many would say the show could not deliver on its promise without THAT PIECE. It’s not even in the programme!

This show is raising funds for the Mary Potter Hospice – which after the year we’ve all had is a very cool thing to do. Good on you Footlights.

As always, Footlights is a champion team and we the audience get to share in their victory!

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