369 St Asaph Street, Christchurch, Tel: 64 3 377 7954

An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics

A concert of the finest works of Rodgers and Hammerstein

The Isaac Theatre Royal will resound with the Sound of Music when Showbiz Christchurch presents An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics, in concert - Showbiz's first concert to be staged in a major theatre.

The most beloved works of Richard Rodgers (music) and Oscar Hammerstein II (lyrics) will be presented in all their musical glory with a full Broadway style orchestra on stage, featured soloists and a chorus of over 120 singers from Showbiz Christchurch and the renowned National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art (NASDA).

The Golden Age of Musical Theatre

Rodgers and Hammerstein initiated what has been called “The Golden Age” of musical theatre with their writing partnership which is considered one of the greatest of the 20th century. Their string of hit musicals include Oklahoma, The King and I, Carousel, South Pacific and The Sound of Music, amongst others, which garnered 34 Tonys, 15 Oscars, the Pulitzer Prize and two Grammy Awards.

Huge hits, Orchestral Interludes & Rousing Choruses

An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics features much loved songs that were huge hits when first released, which have since grown to iconic status over the decades. The concert includes solos such as: ‘Some Enchanted Evening’, ‘The Sound of Music’ and ‘Younger Than Springtime’ duets that include: ‘People Will Say We’re in Love’ and ‘I have Dreamed’, orchestral interludes and, of course, rousing choruses with over 100 singers raising the Isaac Theatre Royal roof with ‘Oklahoma!’, ‘There is Nothin’ Like a Dame’ and ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’.

Conducted by Richard Marrett and directed by Stephen Robertson, this will be a ‘Grand Night for Singing’ that will be one of your ‘Favourite Things’ in 2017.


See Also:
Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
Sister Act - A Divine Musical Comedy

“Walk on, walk on with hope in your heart, and you’ll never walk alone”

Richard Marrett: Musical Director & Conductor
Featured Soloists
Production Team

  • Luke Allis
  • Elliw Alwen
  • Mitchell Anderson
  • John Armstrong
  • Brooke Askin
  • Hannah Austin
  • Michael Bayly
  • Juliette Bernard
  • Kineta Knight Booker
  • Amy Bowie
  • Shannon-Aimee Bradley
  • Jeremy Brow
  • Maddie Bullock
  • Paul Burland
  • Greta Casey-Solly
  • Philippa Chilvers
  • Alexia Clark
  • Ruby Clarke
  • Liberty Clark-Higson
  • Emma Cole
  • Chelsea Cope
  • Oliver Cook
  • Oliver Coughlin
  • Mark Darbyshire
  • Alistair Davies
  • Ocean Denham
  • Tatjana Dingle
  • Dearna Doglione
  • Jacqueline Doherty
  • Daniel Dove
  • Jason Eager
  • Simon Ebbesson
  • Jenny-Marie Evans
  • Hannah Falconer
  • Deirdre Fell
  • Chris Finnie
  • Jack Fraser
  • Amelia Fuller
  • Becky Gallacher
  • Finn Gestro-Best

  • Nicole Gleeson-Jones
  • Esmay Goodman
  • Laurel Rose Gregory
  • Rob Hallinan
  • Erin Hammond
  • Kate Hanning
  • Jack Hanrahan
  • Liana Harris
  • Sam Harris
  • Helena Harvey
  • Caitlin Heath-Anderson
  • Reylene Hilaga
  • Nick Hollamby
  • Nina Kopa
  • Meredith Jackson
  • Kira Josephson
  • Amy Juer
  • Annabel Keys
  • Jess King
  • Joe Kummer
  • Brendon Latimer
  • Jane Leonard
  • Craig Lough
  • Tim Maguire
  • Annie Manning
  • Juliet Manning
  • Nicky Marshall
  • Tara Martin
  • Amanda Martin
  • Sofie Martinsdotter
  • Anna Matthews
  • Thomas McCabe
  • Terry McCartan
  • Jacqui McConnell
  • Blair McHugh
  • Cameron McHugh
  • Rebecca McIvor
  • Jack Milner-George
  • Jared Morello
  • Finn Moseley

  • Raoul Neave
  • Rangimarie Nightingale
  • Drew Noble
  • Connie O'Callaghan
  • Georgia O'Connor-Harding
  • Josh Pereira
  • Isabella Pownall
  • Danielle Rackham
  • Samantha Raines
  • Nicholas Ravlich
  • Jordi Rea
  • Sara Reedy
  • Emma Richards
  • Jessie Rickard-Green
  • Sophie Ricketts
  • Bryanna Rooney
  • Tabitha Rowe
  • Georgia Ryder
  • James Shera
  • Douglas Shields
  • Daniel Shute
  • Claire Steel
  • Jenny Stewart
  • Emily-Jane Stockman
  • Emily Sullivan
  • Jamie Swarbrick
  • Celine Rosa Tan
  • Charlotte Taylor
  • Stephen Taylor
  • Will Thomas
  • Lorraine Turner
  • Liam Tyrrell
  • Lucy Vanner
  • Chris Walker
  • Rachel Walsh
  • Henry Warner
  • Nickie Wellbourn
  • Erin Wells
  • Matilda Wickbom
  • Nigel Withington


  • Richard Marrett: Conductor
  • Elvira Dommisse: Flute
  • Matthew Lee: Flute
  • Ashleigh Mowbray: Oboe
  • Carolyn Irons: Clarinet
  • Georgina Rees-Stevenson: Clarinet
  • Julie Link: Bassoon
  • Brooke Prendergast: Horn
  • David Mueller-Cajar: Horn
  • Julian Weir: Horn

  • Sarah Hickman: Trumpet
  • Kevin Hickman: Trumpet
  • David Wallace: Trombone
  • Aaron Chandler: Trombone
  • Craig Given: Percussion
  • Vicki King: Percussion
  • Sam Jury: Harp/Piano
  • Lucienne Shelley: Violin
  • Jennie Goldstein: Violin
  • Carlo Ballara: Violin

  • Julianne Song: Violin
  • Emma Harwood-Matthews: Violin
  • Pam Hooper: Violin
  • Kerrin Brizzell: Viola
  • Ian Bolton: Viola
  • Iain Brandram-Adams: Cello
  • Taylor Lin: Cello
  • Gerald Oliver: Bass

Production Team

  • Musical Director: Richard Marrett
  • Stage Manager: Stephen Robertson
    Assisted by: Gavin Bailey and Lydia Foate
  • Repetiteur: Sam Jury
  • Lighting Design: Grant Robertson - The Light Site
  • Sound Design & Operator: Glen Ruske - Bounce NZ
  • Head Mechanist: David Bosworth - The Light Site

  • Wardrobe Manager: Diane Brodie QSM
    Assisted by: Violet Blay, Jan Cosgrove, Charlotte McNulty, Vicki Morris-Williamson and Kath Preston
  • Production Manager: Johnny Morris
  • Lighting Operator: Darren McKane
  • Follow Spot Operator: Erin Thorne
  • Fly: Fiona Bennetts

  • General Manager: Michael Bayly
  • Marketing Manager: Wendy Riley
  • Front of House Manager: Sandi White
    Assisted by: Sue Ease, Tania McHugh, Rhonda McLeod and Sally Wilson


Star Review: Classic songs come to life onstage

So many performances these days seem to be getting bigger, flashier, more colorful, more dramatic, more incredible.

The Showbiz Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics was none of those things.

Yet there is something magical about going back to the simplicity of music.

And this was music beautifully presented and flawlessly performed, with a full orchestra, incredible soloists and a chorus of 120 voices.

It was an old fashioned style performance – the full orchestra dominated the stage, conductor front and centre in immaculately shined shoes. The chorus stood in rows, 120 white faces, while the soloists came and went in suit jackets and fairytale gowns.

The soloists were incredible, each bringing strong voices and powerful performances.

When surrounded by a chorus of 120 other voices, stealing the stage cannot be easy – but soloist Greta Casey-Soley managed it, bringing huge energy and fun to ‘June is Bustin’ Out All Over’ from the Carousel.

The chorus pieces, ‘I Whistle a Happy Tune’ from The King and I and ‘My Favourite Things’ from The Sound of music, got so many heads nodding and toes tapping in the audience it added an extra layer of percussion.

Conductor and musical director Richard Marrett brought incredible energy to the stage throughout. Each piece flowed together so well it was easy to get lost in the music, and the show seemed over far too soon.

Even after the curtain fell and the audience spilled onto the street, the excitement was infectious. People lingered, heading down New Regent St for coffee or gelato, or gathered in laughing, chattering groups on the footpath.

One tall young orchestra member stood leaning on his instrument case on the street, listening solemnly as two beaming white haired ladies exclaimed over how much they loved the show. One couldn’t contain herself and bounced up and down on the spot joyfully.

And that said it all – more than 70 years after some of these pieces first hit the stage, they have lost none of their magic.

Backstage:Review – An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein

by Kate Divett

As a child I used to save all the hokey-pokey bits in my ice cream until the end, savouring the sweet morsels in one giant mouthful. This feeling came back to me in the Isaac Theatre Royal during An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics.

As hokey pokey is to icecream, the performance is a smorgasbord of hits from the Golden Age of musical theatre – the best songs from the great musicals that paved the way for the shows of today. The affect of this is much like eating all the hokey-pokey bits in one go – everything is the best, which is definitely a guilty pleasure and perhaps a little overwhelming.

The content of the show will not leave many disappointed. Songs cover the breadth of the Rodgers and Hammerstein partnership – Carousel, State Fair and The King and I in the first act, followed by South Pacific, The Sound of Music and Oklahoma! after interval. That there are so many well-known songs in this small range of musicals is a testament to the timeless influence of this musical collaboration. My personal preferences and connections with the music meant I preferred the second act to the first, but there were favourites for everyone throughout. The staging of the show as a concert draws the attention to the musical and lyrical mastery of these works.

Having chosen a show that contains a grab-bag of smash hits – and without the luxury of scenery and character costumes – it was up to the performers to meet the challenge and deliver equivalent performances. This was met by most.

Richard Marrett’s assembly of a 120-strong chorus provided the grunt and depth of sound that is often not possible in smaller stage productions, which was a delight whenever their curtain was lifted. Highlights included a rollicking and intricately arranged Do-Re-Mi, and the men sounded magnificent in There is Nothing Like a Dame. It was marvellous to have the orchestra join the vocal performers on stage, which allowed us to collectively appreciate their work and talent during instrumental interludes.

It must be said that among the soloists there were some standout performances that engaged more than others. Jack Fraser was one whose confident and relaxed stage presence flourished in this setting, working naturally with the orchestra and communicating the narrative of the songs. His voice is superb.

Greta Casey-Solly captured the audience’s attention in June is Bustin’ Out All Over and held it in My Favourite Things. Nigel Withington’s Climb Ev’ry Mountain was the emotional peak of the show, he gave a performance worthy of the Mother Abbess herself. Michael Bayly had the misfortune to have followed Donna Alley’s stunningly controlled and powerful performance of You’ll Never Walk Alone – in contrast, Bayly’s Soliloquy drifted and lacked consistent energy. Jane Leonard and Nick Hollamby have effortless, smooth-like-butter voices that worked with the music to transport us to an altogether more enchanted evening.

All in all, An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics is everything it should be – a retrospective savouring of musically and lyrically decadent show-tunes, brought back to life in a way that ends up being both sickly-sweet and yet delightfully indulgent. A guilty pleasure indeed.

What's Up Review: Audience wowed by an Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics

By Jenny Sew Hoy Agnew

One of the advantages a local production has over an international touring show is the partisan audience of family and friends of the performers.

Showbiz’s audience for An Evening of Rodgers and Hammerstein Classics was no different.

Richard Rodgers’ familiar music, coupled with Oscar Hammerstein’s witty lyrics, was presented delightfully and wowed the crowd.

All around me I could hear snatches of words or humming of the tunes.

My companion had to nudge me at times to shut me up!

These songs were definitely the best from the Golden Age of musical theatre.

The addition of the entire NASDA student body gave a youthful aspect to the established Showbiz chorus and swelled the numbers to 120.

To be able to provide solo spots to individuals from this chorus is a wonderful example of the talent we were so lucky to hear.

Jane Leonard showed again both her acting and her singing abilities, especially in “Mr Snow” from Carousel. Nigel Withington wrung good advice from “Climb every mountain”, usually Mother Abbess’s solo in The Sound of Music.

Nick Hollamby joined Jane Leonard to exhort each other not to show their partiality, worrying that “People will say we’re in love”, from Oklahoma!

Not every song was rip-roaring and pacey like the finale. The tragic “We kiss in a shadow” from The King and I, was a truly moving duet by Celine Rosa Tan and Nigel Withington.

It was a pleasure to be able to hear the words of the lyrics.

The soloists’ clear diction enabled us to appreciate the stories told by the songs.

The always splendid Richard Marrett energetically conducted the 30 piece Broadway-style orchestra.

The CSO was acknowledged for its fine contribution to the evening.

The percussionists always seemed on the move.

How fortunate Christchurch is to have musicians of such calibre!