Mary Pop­pins flies up, up and away

Rotorua Review - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS -

Be­fore fly­ing across the arena in Mary Pop­pins – The Broad­way Mu­si­cal, lead ac­tress Melissa Ni­chol­son, headed to Canopy Tours to prac­tice this week.

There is an ironic twist to Ni­chol­son’s role – she’s scared of heights.

How­ever she was de­ter­mined to face her fears be­fore the high-fly­ing shows be­gan at Ro­torua En­ergy Events Cen­tre.

‘‘I was a bit anx­ious head­ing out to Canopy Tours but the team were lovely and very mind­ful of my fear of heights. As soon as we got go­ing I ab­so­lutely loved it,’’ said Ni­chol­son.

She was thrilled to be cho­sen to play the iconic Mary Pop­pins and has a string of roles to her credit in­clud­ing Cabaret, Rent, An­nie, Chicago and Hair­spray.

Many will recog­nise her from her last Ro­torua role as Eva Pero´n in Evita and off­stage Ni­chol­son is an English teacher at Otu¯moetai Col­lege, Tau­ranga.

Af­ter Ro­torua Mu­si­cal The­atre had to move the show from the closed Sir Howard Mor­ri­son Per­form­ing Arts Cen­tre to the Ro­torua En­ergy Events Cen­tre dis­cus­sions quickly be­gan about how to make the show mag­i­cal in the new and larger venue.

Ro­torua Mu­si­cal The­atre President Natasha Ben­fell is ex­cited to show­case the hard work by all the cast and crew as well as un­veil some of the spec­tac­u­lar fly­ing tricks they have up their sleeves.

‘‘The arena is go­ing to be mag­i­cal and cou­pled with an in­no­va­tive set, fan­tas­tic back stage crew and tal­ented per­form­ers. This is go­ing to be a show you won’t want to miss,’’ said Ben­fell.

This lim­ited sea­son of Mary Pop­pins – The Broad­way Mu­si­cal will of­fer 12 shows at the Ro­torua En­ergy Events Cen­tre un­til March 24, 2018.

A range of seat­ing and fam­ily con­ces­sions are avail­able through www.tick­et­mas­

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