Spot­light on new stars

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - PLAY WHAT’S ON -

Spot­light En­ter­tainer’s Fes­ti­val has been help­ing to groom the next crop of young, lo­cal tal­ent for the past 42 years – while also nur­tur­ing the ‘ma­ture and mo­ti­vated’. For­mer fes­ti­val per­former Jai Bofin­ger is just one of the many suc­cess sto­ries re­cently star­ring as Michael in the ac­claimed Dis­ney pro­duc­tion of Mary Pop­pins af­ter win­ning his sec­tion of the en­ter­tainer’s fes­ti­val last year. Con­venor Chris Har­ris says per­form­ing at the fes­ti­val gave Jai the con­fi­dence to au­di­tion for the block­buster mu­si­cal – with great suc­cess. Har­ris, who has been a mem­ber of the theatre com­pany since 1967, says the fes­ti­val is a plat­form for per­form­ers to go on to big­ger and bet­ter things. ‘‘We had about six or seven girls in the pro­duc­tion of An­nie this year which is just fan­tas­tic,’’ she says. ‘‘And when I watch shows like So You Think You Can Dance and Australia’s Got Tal­ent, I al­ways see lots of our Spot­light kids who have per­formed in the fes­ti­val many times. It’s great to see them go on and achieve suc­cess, and I think the fes­ti­val def­i­nitely helps de­velop their tal­ent and con­fi­dence per­form­ing in front of an au­di­ence. It just goes to show the cal­i­bre of tal­ent to be seen at these fes­ti­vals to have so many peo­ple go on to have pro­fes­sional ca­reers.’’ There are 941 en­tries this year in more than 50 sec­tions in­clud­ing en­ter­tain in any way, char­ac­ter­i­sa­tion of song from a stage mu­si­cal, solo vo­cal, song and dance, groups, trios, dra­matic pre­sen­ta­tions, in­stru­men­tal per­for­mances and much more from ev­ery age group rang­ing from three years old to 90 years old. Ev­ery­one is wel­come to be a part of the au­di­ence.

Spot­light En­ter­tain­ers Fes­ti­val plays Nerang Bi­cen­ten­nial Hall from 4pm to­day un­til April 28, with a Va­ri­ety Con­cert on April 29. Visit spot­lightthe­atre.com.au for the sched­ule. Tick­ets are $5 to $7 per ses­sion or $27 sea­son pass.

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