WHAT A WOMAN
News of Helen Reddy’s admission to a Los Angeles nursing home has reverberated through Australian entertainment circles
The Australian theatre community was devastated to hear of the move last week into a Los Angeles nursing facility of superstar entertainer Helen Reddy. Half sister of theatre icon Toni Lamond, and aunt to Tony Award nominee Tony Sheldon, Reddy has been diagnosed with dementia, interrupting what she hoped to be a career comeback. Reddy, 73, rose to fame with her 1972 smash I Am Woman, which became an anthem for the growing women’s movement in the United States. A native of Australia, Reddy was helpful in launching the singing career of Olivia Newton-John. She put her career on hold for more than a decade to return to Australia in 2002 to care for ailing family members. Several new shows are coming up on the Gold Coast, with a couple about to close. Tugun Theatre’s Gaslight opens this Thursday and runs until August 29, and Spotlight’s very successful Legally Blonde runs until August 22. We hear that it is completely sold out. GCLT’s Private Lives has its last weekend coming up, and Dimboola moves to the main stage for rehearsals straight afterwards. Director Dorothy Henderson is still looking for a few cast members. Call her on 0459 332 917. Many of our young hopefuls are excited at the prospect of auditioning for one of the greats; Dame Julie Andrews will come to Australia in November to direct the 60th Anniversary production of My Fair Lady in Sydney. The production will be staged at the Sydney Opera House in August 2016. For those looking for extra cultural opportunities, take a quick trip up the M1 to the Con, where Bachelor of Music Theatre third year students are presenting Blood Brothers, and A Chorus Line, on alternate weeks. Lots of local kids are involved. Book at conevents.com In rehearsal on the Coast are Ballina Players’ Moonlight & Magnolias and Javeenbah Theatre’s Forbidden Broadway (both running September 419), Top Hat Productions’ Cocktails with Noel & Gertie (September 17-October 4), Tweed Theatre Co’s 12 Dancing Princesses (August 15-30), Tugun’s Gaslight and GCLT’s Dimboola. Anything Goes (Brisbane) finishes August 22 – don’t miss this one – it’s terrific. See you in a crowded foyer real soon.
Helen Reddy back in Melbourne last year.