Fans of Whit­ney (and Paulini) be­ware! Trevor Ash­ley’s “barbed and smutty” panto, The Bodybag is not for the faint of heart!

DNA Magazine - - CONTENT -

THE BODYBAG EN­SEM­BLE. DNA: Your cur­rent show, The Bodybag; The Panto is, per­haps, “in­spired” by The Body­guard. Are you a fan of the show?

Trevor Ash­ley: I’ve seen the show in the UK and here. “Fan” of the mu­si­cal might be a bit too strong… I love the movie, but I think the mu­si­cal has prob­lems. Apart from a lack of struc­ture and a pan­tomime-es­que stalker, it has re­ally good songs. Was that diplo­matic?

Yes! What about Whit­ney? Is she one of your di­vas?

She is! I’ve loved her for­ever… My favourites of her songs are def­i­nitely her ’80s dance hits – How Will I Know is my favourite Whit­ney song ever – but I also like some of her later dance stuff, too. Not to men­tion the power bal­lads. She could pop out a power bal­lad like no­body’s busi­ness.

And are you BFFs with Paulini, who played the Whit­ney role on stage in Australia?

I’ve known Paulini so long I re­mem­ber when her name was Pauline! We did the Schools Spec­tac­u­lar to­gether in the early 1800s. I’ve heard, through sources, that she thought the whole idea that we par­ody her is hi­lar­i­ous. She booked to see the show twice in De­cem­ber but never came, so I’m cross­ing my fin­gers that she’ll be there for this sea­son!

Who is your lead­ing man? How’s he go­ing with the lifts? My hunky lead­ing man is Gus Mur­ray, who was in The Great Gatsby. He’s had a bit of prac­tice now but, let’s be hon­est, he’s not go­ing to last long. It’s like a chi­huahua car­ry­ing an ele­phant.

We know you are cur­rently sport­ing a bro­ken shoul­der… How did you break it, and how have you kept per­form­ing?

It’s been shit, ac­tu­ally. It’s been a long and in­volved re­cov­ery, and I’m still not there yet. There was a wet floor and I slipped on a ramp and hit the bot­tom of it so hard I broke my hand and my shoul­der. The hand was op­er­ated on with four screws hold­ing it to­gether now, but the shoul­der has to heal on its own, which is no fun at all. They won’t even give me painkillers any­more. For this show we had to mod­ify the chore­og­ra­phy so it’s ba­si­cally one-armed. It’s been a long six months.

Your­self, Court­ney Act, Matt Mitcham, Paul Cap­sis… the queer cabaret scene is re­ally thriv­ing in Australia at the mo­ment. Do you feel sup­ported as an artist?

I feel very lucky to get to do what I do. Peo­ple have been com­ing to my shows in record num­bers so I’m pretty thrilled about that. I’m sad with the [de­cline in num­ber of gay me­dia out­lets] that we now have fewer ways of get­ting our sto­ries out but I’m very glad DNA is still around to chat about it!

So are well! It’s our Sports Is­sue – do you have a sport you love to play or watch?

Look, can’t say I watch or play any sport. I do man­age 10-me­tre wad­ing, if that counts, and I’m pretty good at wa­ter­sports, but in a dif­fer­ent way. That’s about it.

Are there any par­tic­u­lar sports men you’re a fan of?

I fol­low Tom Da­ley and Adam Rip­pon on In­sta­gram, so they’d be my favourite sports men. But I think they’re more “sports twinks” re­ally, aren’t they?

MORE: The Bodybag; The Panto plays at the Syd­ney Opera House, May 16 to 23; and the Mel­bourne Com­edy The­atre, May 31 to June 2. For Syd­ney book­ings go to syd­ney­op­er­a­ For Mel­bourne book­ings go to Tick­et­mas­


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