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Only Heaven Knows

David's major breakthrough performance was in the highly lauded revival of Alex Harding's musical "Only Heaven Knows" first at the Stables, then at the Sydney Opera House. For his role as Tim in this musical, David was nominated for a MO award for "Best Musical Theatre Performance of the Year". I have also included the CD and Sheet Music details too.

Synopsis

Only Heaven Knows opens in the present with the Ghost of Lea Sonia, Australia's leading female impersonator of the 1940's. (Prologue).

 It then shifts to 1944 and the arrival of Tim in Kings Cross, Sydney from Melbourne. (This Is It). Here he becomes the boarder of Mrs Guinea Newbolt and settles into life at the Cross.

It is a Sydney Summer evening (Night-Time in This City) and in his flat Alan eventually convinces Cliff to accompany him to the Artists' Gala Drag and Drain Ball: "a chance to dress up and get away with it". Tim, now working at a delicatessen, has been "out and about in the city" (Sydney You're Wonderful). Cliff, having met Tim at the Deli, has fallen in love with him and with prompting from Lana, invites Tim to a dinner -"discretion assured". (Would You Like That Too?) As Tim goes to dinner, Guinea goes to work at the Starlight Room where she is the resident songstress (Ain't It A Shame).

The next morning as Cliff goes to work, Alan helps Tim with his costume for the Drag and Drain Ball (Asking Me Questions). "Dressed to the nines", Guinea, Alan, Cliff, Tim and Lana go off to the Ball (Act I Sc 15).

Act Two opens in 1956 "Sydney is not the town that it was" (Act II Sc 1). Guinea and Lana have established a costume hire shop. Tim and Cliff are still together but pressure is placed on their relationship as Tim starts to realise his dream to become a playwright (Lucky For You).

The sexual and social freedom that the Forties seem to foretell was not to eventuate as the Cold War and the Menzies' Era arrived. Alan, wanting to fit in to this "norm", decides to undergo Electro-Aversion Therapy (Where is the Love?). His first session, watched over by the Ghost of Lea Sonia leaves Alan shattered and Lea defiant (Stealin'). As Alan's therapy "progresses" he isolates himself from the others.

Tim receives an offer from overseas to work on the upcoming London production of Lawler's Summer of the Seventeenth Doll and shares the news with Guinea but does not know how to tell Cliff.

Lana, going to visit Alan, finds him sitting in the dark. When Alan sees Lana, the learnt response from his "cure" engulfs him and he is violently ill. Lana takes him to the costume shop where Cliff has just told Guinea he has put a deposit on a house. Guinea accidentally mentions her conversation with Tim about London.

That evening Cliff confronts Tim and Tim storms out (Without Him).

As Alan moves towards self-acceptance, he realises that he isn't "closed off, ugly,...old".

Tim decides to accept the offer of work in London (Only Heaven Knows) and with Cliff's blessing boards the boat for England.

Lea returns to celebrate how far we have all travelled (Epilogue).

_______________

David Campbell - Tim
Anthony Cogin - Cliff, Uncle Kenny
Jason Langley - Alan
Jacqy Phillips - Guinea, Aunty Maureen, Drama Teacher, Doctor
Garry Scale - The Ghost of Lea Sonia, Lana

Only Heaven Knows was a NSW Bicentennial Commission and was originally performed at The Stables Theatre, Sydney 1988 (Dir. Margaret Davis). This new production opened at The Stables Theatre, Sydney, on 3rd February 1995.


A promo poster from the show.

The promotional poster at the Sydney Opera House.

Thanks to Chris Murray for these photos.