Review: Little OrphanTrashley
Trevor Ashley loves playing dress ups. He has perhaps made his riskiest move yet by donning a red afro. As a ten-year-old orphan who can’t afford a weave and who lives in the Sutherland Shire, well, what can I say; it’s a hard knock life.
While the circumstances of dear Fanny’s existence somewhat reflect that of another plucky musical heroine, it’s clear that it is merely a jumping off point.
Teaming again with the fabulous Phil Scott, his collaborator on Fat Swan, Ashley has put together a traditional panto with an X-rated twist. There is jaw dropping offensiveness aplenty, reworked songs that you will never hear the same way again and household names you might never expect to share a stage giving it their all.
A week into the run, apart from Ashley’s followers, the fans of Rhonda Burchmore and Gary Sweet are starting to come. So apart from the “celebs” obviously relishing working with one another, we have their admirers in the audience, sitting side by side, sharing a table and warm champagne (urgh) and taking turns picking each other off the floor. Love it.
I think enough has been written about the controversy that courted this panto so I will just say, in my opinion, dissing transgender people is not what this show is about.
Ashley, of course, is the mad centre of this maelstrom but generously lets his co-stars shine.
Burchmore is working her impossibly long legs, her vocal chops and her high hair Cruella -de- Villainy to the max.
Sweet, the straightest, toughest bloke on TV is not known for his triple threat prowess and there’s a good reason for that. To give him his due, he proves he’s a good sport. The killer smile works it magic and he knows how to sell a song.
Still the show is stolen from all three by the sexiest man’s best friend ever to wag a synthetic tail. Rhys Bobridge romps home as Fannie’s trusty ex-sniffer dog Bullshit and their mid show duet is the stuff romantic teams are made of.
This is the perfect show to get over the end-of-the -year fatigue and to prepare you for your Christmas hangover.
Little Orphan Trashley, The Studio at the Sydney Opera House. Until December 23. Bookings: 02 9250 7777