Campbell Something to Shout About

SHOUT!: Jacobsen Entertainment
Festival Theatre

DAVID Campbell glitters in this show like the true star that he is.

All acting, singing and dancing, he zooms through the production holding together a very ordinary script with sheer pizzazz.

Writers Mitchell, Morrow and Howson have cobbled together an unattractive, warts-and-all, maudlin view of Johnny O'Keefe which throws more brickbats than bouquets and probably tells us more than we ever needed to know about drug taking, wife bashing, awkward inlaws and hubris.

Certainly the show drags and could do with a third being chopped and the whole thing tightened up.

Be that as it may, the leading man and his cast give their all, and that is a huge amount, in big show numbers and dynamic dance routines.

Ross Coleman has created terrific choreography that just makes you want to get up and dance in the aisles.

Charlie Hull, as musical director rips, into the sound like there is no tomorrow with recreations of all the songs that O'Keefe made his own.

Tamsin Carroll gives a sensitive performance as JO'K's first wife, Trisha Noble makes his mother a daunting suburban housewife but with a gutsy singing voice, Aaron Blaby is a seductive and sly Lee Gordon, the Yankee promoter, and Doug Scroope rounds out the principal roles as O'Keefe senior, the self-made suburban success story.

The Dee Jays and the Delltones are recreated very cleverly, particularly strong is Kurt Sneddon as Pee Wee, while the whole chorus line-up obviously enjoys the excitement of being "wild ones''.

Director Richard Wherrett produces some very neat moments of nostalgia in early television sequences which far outstrip anything in the "memories are made of this'' department which Graeme Murphy so unsuccessfully tried with Tivoli.

Baby boomers will love the routines and the music, even if the show itself is no great shakes in the script area, it's worth seeing just for that gorgeous, glittering "wild one'' David Campbell.

 

Reviewed by Russell Starke

Messenger Newspaper Adelaide, July, 2001