Paul Capsis: Dry My Tears

Paul-Capsis-photo-by-Jacquie-ManningFollowing an acclaimed run in Sydney, the inimitable and incomparable icon of cabaret, Paul Capsis returns to fortyfivedownstairs for the Melbourne premiere of Dry My Tears, this May.

Accompanied by The Song Company’s Francis Greep on grand piano, Capsis will perform an acoustic set of cabaret, jazz, and ragtime classics by Kurt Weill, John Kander, Billy Joel, Elton John, Melody Gardot, Johnny Mercer and more, with influences from Marianne Faithfull, Jimmy Scott, and Nina Simone. An uncompromisingly honest and powerful evening of song!

Last seen at fortyfivedownstairs in his acclaimed Green Room Award nominated performance as Quentin Crisp in Resident Alien, Capsis is one of Australia’s most versatile performers. His extensive career has seen him work with many of Australia’s leading companies, including STC, MTC, Malthouse Theatre, STCSA, Victorian Opera, and Company B Belvoir.

His many accolades include multiple Helpmann Awards (including Best Actor for Angela’s Kitchen and Best Live Musical Presentation for Capsis vs Capsis), the 2004 Green Room Award for Best Cabaret Artiste, the 1998 Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor for Head On, and the 2021 Adelaide Cabaret Festival Icon Award.

Part of Opera Australia for over ten years, Francis Greep became Head of Music of both West Australian Opera and Houston Grand Opera. Returning to Sydney, he took up marketing and development roles at Gondwana Choirs before joining The Song Company in 2019. He has performed across North and South America, Europe, New Zealand, and Australia.

Dry My Tears came about after Paul and I collaborated on a performance work called Skin Deep, part of the Mardi Gras Festival in 2021,” says Greep. “I had long been an admirer of Paul’s work.”

“In Skin Deep, he walked up from the audience at the end of what was a fairly full-on experience, and started singing Imagine by John Lennon. In this song, acoustic and simple, I could hear so many vocal colours that I wanted to explore further.”

“We knew we wanted to begin in the dark underworld of Kurt Weill, but where to go from there took a bit longer to work out. We listened to and sang through a huge number of songs, keeping many on the “possible” list until the idea of a very personal story, of love gained, love falling apart, and ultimately finding strength through self-knowledge and experience, began to take shape,” said Greep.

“I’m thrilled to be bringing my first ever entirely acoustic program to fortyfivedownstairs,” says Capsis. “When I thought about where we might be able to perform it in Melbourne, fortyfive seemed like an ideal choice.”

“It’s been a daunting but wonderful experience performing this show in Sydney, so I hope Melbourne audiences enjoy the journey we’ve crafted with these songs that mean so much to me,” said Capsis.

“It was Paul Capsis as Paul Capsis. Raw, vulnerable and honest as he took us on what seemed to be a personal journey of his life through song.” – Theatre Travels

Paul Capsis: Dry My Tears
fortyfivedownstairs, 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
Season: 17 – 28 May 2023
Information and Bookings:

Image: Paul Capsis – photo by Jacquie Manning