Ro­torua to Ve­gas – Tim’s liv­ing a dream

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By Jus­tine Glu­cina

He’s New Zealand’s an­swer to Frank Si­na­tra, but Tim Bev­eridge is still a Kiwi boy at heart.

Be­hind the Hol­ly­wood al­bums, global per­for­mances and in­ter­na­tional theatre pro­duc­tions is a man who loves rugby and home made roasts.

Raised in Ro­torua as the youngest of four boys, Mr Bev­eridge says the clos­est he came to mu­sic was singing in the shower and play­ing the pi­ano.

“I al­ways loved mu­sic but Kiwi guys didn’t re­ally do mu­sic,” he says.

It was only af­ter an eye in­jury dur­ing a school rugby game, where his retina was de­tached, that he be­gan to think about the di­rec­tion of his life.

“I had to stop play­ing rugby. I was gut­ted. But it made me look at life dif­fer­ently. I’d al­ways been into mu­sic but the in­jury gave me time to think about other things.”

It wasn’t un­til he aban­doned a ca­reer in law and left for Canada that he re­alised he had tal­ent.

“I saw some shows when I trav­elled and de­cided I wanted to be a singer.”

And af­ter see­ing Phan­tom of the Opera in Lon­don his heart was sold.

With the right Kiwi at­ti­tude, he thought he would “give it a go”.

Six years later Mr Bev­eridge starred in the mu­si­cal he had dreamed of so of­ten.

At just 29 he stepped out in front of a crowded Syd­ney au­di­to­rium in a black cape and white mask.

“To do a cou­ple of years as an ama­teur and then to per­form it was a dream.

“When he ap­pears in the mir­ror and mu­si­cally it crescen­dos and ev­ery­thing builds to his en­trance, and to see this big au­di­to­rium and you’re the phan­tom, it was so sur­real.”

From there, his ca­reer took off and he per­formed along­side Hol­ly­wood bigshot Hugh Jack­man in Sun­set Boule­vard in Melbourne the fol­low­ing year.

Af­ter sev­eral trips home and ap­pear­ances on television, Mr Bev­eridge de­cided to broaden his hori­zons.

He per­formed with the New Zealand Sym­phony Orches­tra and mu­sic leg­end Russ Gar­cia, who has worked with some of the big­gest names in Hol­ly­wood, such as Louis Arm­strong, Ella Fitzger­ald, Frank Si­na­tra and Count Basie.

Mr Bev­eridge’s love of swing mu­sic blos­somed as theatre took a back stage.

“It’s the sort of mu­sic you grow into,” he says.

“The songs have great melodies and bril­liant lyrics for guys.

“There’s a lot of folk­lore about singers like Si­na­tra, but they sang the mean­ing of the words.”

Mr Bev­eridge’s mu­sic has a strong fol­low­ing from the older gen­er­a­tion but he says it is slowly be­ing sold to the younger set.

“The mu­sic’s so good that artists are go­ing to pick it up,” he says, cit­ing Rob­bie Wil­liams and Rod Ste­wart as two artists who have won over younger fans.

On Sun­day Mr Bev­eridge stars in Ve­gas at the Aotea Cen­tre, a show he is also pro­duc­ing.

“It’s ex­haust­ing. Some­times I say ‘I must be crazy’ be­cause I’m re­spon­si­ble for mak­ing de­ci­sions to do with the show, the venue, the tick­et­ing, the guest list, ad­ver­tis­ing and the band.

“That can be pretty in­tim­i­dat­ing.”

But he says his love of mu­sic, of the band and of get­ting up on stage make it all worth it.

“I get a real buzz from putting a whole lot of tal­ent to­gether. It’s amaz­ing.”

The Mother’s Day show pays trib­ute to the Las Ve­gas swing era with clas­sic mu­sic from Dean Martin, Frank Si­na­tra and Bobby Darin.

Songs in­clude Mack the Knife, She, and Viva Las Ve­gas.

Vi­o­lin­ist Jes­sica Hindin, who Mr Bev­eridge says is phe­nom­e­nal, the Auck­land Neo­phonic Orches­tra and the Candy Lane dancers all fea­ture in the show with a 17-piece band.

For tick­ets call 357-3355 or go to www.the-edge.co.nz.

Or­di­nary guy: A rugby in­jury forced Tim Bev­eridge to think more about mu­sic.

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