TRUE TO ESSENCE OF BLUES
A show to recreate all that made The Blues Brothers such a success is hitting all the right notes with the original’s staunchest fans
It seems like yesterday that brothers, Jake and Elwood Blues, played by John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd, invited the world to join them on a “mission from God”.
The Blues Brothers was a lovable tale of redemption about the pair of paroled convicts, who set out to save the Catholic orphanage in which they grew up, from the taxation department.
As the story goes, they reformed their rhythm and blues band, The Blues Brothers, and organised a concert to raise $5000 to pay off the debt and save the day.
But things never went according to plan for Jake and Elwood, and their story evolved into a rollicking journey of misadventure, and one of best loved films ever.
The movie spawned many tributes but only one, the Official Blues Brothers Revue, has been sanctioned by Aykroyd and Belushi’s widow, Judith Belushi Pisano, and comes to Twin Towns this weekend.
The revue stars Wayne Catania as Jake and Kieron Lafferty as Elwood and Judith Belushi is full of praise for them.
“It’s The Blues Brothers with a Belushi blessing,’’ she says.
“It’s amazing how similar Wayne and Kieron are to John and Dan. They have been doing The Blues Brothers for a very long time.’’
Gold Coast fans are set to get a nostalgic musical fix when the pair arrives from the US for their Aussie tour.
Belushi, who is an accomplished writer, graphic designer and artist, married John Belushi in Aspen, Colorado, in 1976. They were married until John’s death on March 5, 1982.
Eight years later, Judith married Victor Pisano and the pair, along with Aykroyd, continued to fly The Blues Brothers’ flag in John’s honour.
They created The Blues Brothers Revival which was written by Victor and produced by Judy and Dan.
After auditioning more than 200 Blues Brothers teams for the world premiere of their musical, Judith, Victor and Dan came across Catania and Lafferty, who were immediately cast in the lead roles.
“Dan and I were looking long and hard for the right people for the show. We had trouble in Chicago finding any guys who could do it,” she says.
“We heard about a show in Vegas and decided to make the trip to see if it was any good. We were very impressed.’’
Belushi says her husband would be very impressed with the show.
Since 2005, Judith, Dan and the John Belushi Estate, have sanctioned Lafferty and Catania’s own show.
The Official Blues Brothers Revue is a faithful recreation of the characters, Jake and Elwood, and a spectacular tribute to Chicago’s rich history of blues, R&B and traditional soul music, played with the same soul and conviction of the original Blues Brothers Band.
“I think part of the success of The Blues Brothers is that it is simple music and people just love it,” Belushi says. “We are looking forward to bringing the show to the Coast and can’t wait to meet fans.
“The guys are accustomed to a terrific reception here in the US and I’m sure (you) will give them just as big a welcome.”
Wayne Catania and Kieron Lafferty bring The Official Blues Brothers Revue to Twin Towns on Saturday night.