Bring It On the Musical Australian Tour
Following sold out performances, and a recent nomination for Best Production of a Musical (Green Room Awards), BRING IT ON THE MUSICAL is set to make a Melbourne return and its professional premiere in Sydney and Perth.
Bitingly relevant, sprinkled with sass and inspired by the hit film, BRING IT ON THE MUSICAL is a hilarious, high energy hit featuring explosive choreography with aerial stunts.
Uniting some of the freshest and funniest creative minds on Broadway, BRING IT ON THE MUSICAL features an original story by Tony Award winner, Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q), music and lyrics by Tony Award-winning composer, Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights, Hamilton), music by Pulitzer- and Tony Award-winning composer, Tom Kitt (Next to Normal), lyrics by Broadway lyricist, Amanda Green (High Fidelity), and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Musical.
With a colourful assortment of characters and an exciting fresh sound, this universal story is sure to be everything you hope for and nothing like you expect!
Rosie spoke with performer Karla Tonkich about why this exciting musical is coming back to Australia shores and how she handled all of that intense cheerleading choreography. Read the full interview below:
How is the experience of Bring It On! changed by taking it to the stage and putting it in song? For fans of the cult-classic movie, what differences can they expect?
I think Australia needs to this show because not only does it have incredible music and electrifying and dynamic choreography, the story is very relevant to today’s society as it celebrates individuality, friendship, stepping out of your comfort zone and the acceptance of different cultures and ones self. I’m loving reprising the role of Eva and it has been so incredible this time, specifically because I’m loving working with Kirby Burgess who now plays Campbell, and it’s so beautiful establishing a new and fresh relationship as characters. I’m also extremely excited to be performing new cheerleading stunts in the show that are both challenging and extremely thrilling.
Were you a fan of the original film, and did you use this to help shape your approach to your character Eva?
I‘m a massive fan of Bring It On! the movie. However, my role Eva is not based on anyone in the first movie, so I’ve actually created a character from scratch. She’s a girl that wants something so badly because it’s her passion and I can absolutely relate to that so there’s a lot of my own experiences injected into Eva. But the real fun of creating and playing this role is that she does anything to get what she wants including stepping over all of her ‘friends’. So I have so much fun playing with the juxtaposition of her “pretending” to be sweet and innocent for most of the show up until her song where she reveals her true evil!
The Australian premiere last year, much to the dismay of Sydney-siders, only made it to Melbourne. Are you excited to be sharing this show with the rest of Australia? For those who haven’t had the chance to see Bring It On! what can they expect from this production?
I’m so excited to be sharing this show with Australia with an exceptional cast. I feel that a lot of people will relate to the themes in this show and can expect to see a beautiful, inspiring story line that is absolutely hilarious and heart-warming. The story is complimented by fun and energetic songs and musical numbers and also diverse, spectacular and Award Winning choreography by Mikey Ralph that will have you on the edge of your seats and with butterflies in your tummy.
You’re reprising your role as Eva after a sold out Australian premiere last year. Why do you think Australia should be seeing this show again, and what’s it like stepping back into the role after time away? Has anything changed?
The main difference between the musical and the original movie is the storyline and the character are slightly different but are strongly based on the movie characters. However, there are extra additions to the musical including my character Eva who creates another obstacle to the story that the movie doesn’t have which I believe makes the story more interesting. I also think on stage this story is even more exciting because we get to express it through song and dance which make it more entertaining for the audience.
In the original Broadway production of Bring It On, due to the demanding choreography a large part of the cast came from a cheerleading background and were not professionally trained in musical theatre. Conversely, as someone who comes from a musical theatre background, how did you find learning cheerleading choreography? What challenges did you face?
I honestly have found cheerleading so incredible. You really have to have no fear and have complete trust in your bases who are your support in order to feel comfortable and I feel I’m achieving this. However the technique can be challenging at times especially when you’re puffed out at the end of a routine. I feel so privileged to have our amazing coach and professional cheerleaders by my side supporting me and giving me challenging stunts to perform. I get a buzz every time I get thrown in the air.
RAPID FIRE QUESTIONS:
Favourite production you have ever seen?
It’s hard to pick my favorite as I’ve loved them all evenly however I think I’d have to say “Grease The Musical” as I had a principal role (Marty -Pink Lady) and I had the opportunity to go on as Sandy for a week which was amazing.
You’re getting on a plane tomorrow and you can go anywhere in the world, where do you go?
Dream show to perform in?
I’ve been so lucky that 2 of my dream shows I’ve been lucky enough to be apart of the Australian Tours: Legally Blonde and We Will Rock You. But I’d love to play Regina George in Mean Girls, Queenie in Andrew Lippas Wild Party and if ever a musical about Marilyn Monroe comes to life I’d love to play her as I find her life fascinating.
Plays or musicals?
A hobby you have beyond the theatre?
Travel, Shopping, Reading, Yoga
What’s next for you after this show?
Right after this show I’m planning on having a holiday as it’s been a very long time since I’ve had a break. But when I’m back I’ll be straight back into singing in my corporate bands ready for the spring/summer gig season. I’m also anxiously waiting for an amazing project that I filmed last year to be released on TV.
Bring It on the Musical will be touring Australia on the following dates:
11– 27 July 2019
The Athenaeum Theatre
188 Collins St, Melbourne VIC 3000
8 – 18 August 2019
His Majesty’s Theatre
825 Hay St, Perth WA 6000
27 August – 8 September 2019
49 Market St, Sydney NSW 2000
You can get tickets for any venue here.