By PHILIP CHANDLER
Despite having to postpone its 2020 musical, Showbiz Queenstown’s still hitting the stage this year, just, with a one-off show this Friday.
Showtunes at the Sherwood will feature songs and medleys from the musical theatre society’s annual shows for the past six or so years.
Even had Covid-19 not killed off May’s musical, Legally Blonde — rescheduled for May 20-29 next year — society president Ben Roberts would have pushed for Showtunes to go ahead.
‘‘It’s difficult to run a society and keep people involved doing one show a year.
‘‘It’s such a peak, and then this flat line for the rest of the year, so we kind of want something else to look forward to.
‘‘My goal for this year was to have the most pared-down show we can, that’s intimate, that we can then build on each year — we might add costumes, some sets, some dance routines.’’
Roberts says the aim was also to put on something affordable, given the environment — tickets are only $25.
This week’s audience will hear songs from the likes of Saturday Night Fever, Chicago, Mamma Mia!, Jesus Christ Superstar, Annie, and last year’s show, Avenue Q.
There’s also a medley from Legally Blonde and probably a Christmas song to finish.
The line-up of 15 singers includes Showbiz regulars Tiff Mitchell, Tiff Bindon, Marty Newell, Kathleen Brentwood, Peter Waaka, Lyall McGregor, Fiona Stephenson, David Oakley, Rachael Gerard and Melita Gizilis.
‘‘It wasn’t the right time or the right show to get any new people involved,’’ Roberts says, ‘‘just because there’s always the [Covid-induced] threat things could get shut down or scaled back, and rehearsals could be difficult.’’
It’s also a reason the venue, Sherwood’s barn, was chosen, as the capacity’s about 100 — the limit if we’re back to Alert Level 2.
‘‘Which is why we were looking at two nights,’’ Roberts says.
‘‘But we had to decide whether we cut the cast by about 20%, for people who couldn’t do both nights, or have all the cast we wanted for one night.’’
He says the format will comprise a few songs at a time interspersed by ‘‘breaks for the bar’’.
‘‘The vibe we want is like those smoky lounge clubs they had in Las Vegas.’’
Singers will be accompanied by regular Showbiz pianist Cheryl Collie or backing tracks.
‘Showtunes at the Sherwood’, Sherwood, December 4, 7.30pm. Tickets $25, Eventbrite or Showbiz Queenstown’s Facebook page