Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

WAAPA-Sweeney-Todd-photo-by-Stephen-HeathOnce in a while a group of WAAPA Musical Theatre students come along that are able to produce a flawless theatrical creation. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street was such a performance.

This year’s group of third year students are exceptional and there was not a weak link amongst the cast. From the moment the show starts you are drawn into the macabre and horrid tale of Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

Patrick Volpe as Sweeney is menacing. Even his eyes pierce the audience with horror as he performs his musical numbers with a strong, powerful rich voice.

Mia Guglielmi as Mrs Lovett is a delight. She portrays her character with a powerful, playful charm. Volpe and Guglielmi, as the two leads have a wonderful chemistry between them as they plot out their plan for a new pie filling.

Mitchell France as Anthony Hope and Mia Beattie as Johanna play the enchanted, naive lovers with sensitivity and warmth.  Their voices blend together as one harmonious instrument.

Emily Lambert as the Beggar Woman and Matthew Manning as The Beadle, hunch themselves over and deliver performances that are at times funny and emotional.

Cameron Taylor as Judge Turpin must deliver one of the most disturbing and confronting scenes as he lusts after his ward, Johanna while inflicting self-flagellation. This is carefully performed and conceived by director Sonya Suares as Taylor performs it with enough emotional disgust to deliver it without being offensive to the audience.

Finally Marcus Frost as the flamboyant Pirelli and his apprentice Tobias Ragg played by Declan Allen, bring some much needed comic relief to such a horrid tale. Allen manages to perform the showstopping, Not While I’m Around with sentiment as he promises to protect his adopted mother, Mrs Lovett.

Mention must also go to the ensemble who perform together effortlessly supporting the leads throughout the production.

Sweeney Todd is the triumphant conclusion to a hardworking team both on stage and behind the scenes. It’s a thrilling, morbid musical tale that is not to be missed!

Sweeney Todd:  The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Geoff Gibbs Theatre – WAAPA, 1 / 2 Bradford Street, Mount Lawley, Western Australia
Performance: Friday 31 March 2023
Season continues to 5 April 2023
Information and Bookings: www.waapa.ecu.edu.au

Image: WAAPA presents Sweeney Todd:  The Demon Barber of Fleet Street – photo by Stephen Heath

Review: Craig Dalglish