THE ’80s are back at Limelight Theatre in the smash hit Broadway musical Rock of Ages.
Written by Chris D’Arienzo and directed by Ashlee Torrens and Kathleen Del Casale, it’s an LA love story where big hair meets big dreams in a rock’n’roll comedy romance.
A small-town girl, fresh off the bus and hoping to become a Hollywood star, meets a big-city dreamer who, while currently a busboy, is an aspiring rocker.
Set in 1987 in LA’s most legendary rock club, they fall in love to the greatest songs of the ’80s.
Rock of Ages is a jukebox musical using classic songs from the era by iconic rockers such as Foreigner, Journey, Bon Jovi, REO Speedwagon, Poison, Starship, Pat Benatar, Whitesnake, Europe and Twisted Sister.
Nominated for five Tony Awards, including best musical, in 2009, the original Broadway production ran for 2,328 performances over six years and is tied as the 29th-longest-running show in Broadway history.
It was also made into a 2012 film with Tom Cruise, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Alec Baldwin, Mary J. Blige, Bryan Cranston and Russell Brand.
The decision to direct Rock of Ages stems from Torrens’ long-time connection with the energetic musical – and Del Casale was eager to join her for the roller coaster ride.
“It’s the sort of musical that will have you dancing in the aisle,” Del Casale said.
“The show is a bawdy good time for anyone looking to forget their troubles and have some fun at the theatre.”
Torrens added: “There’s something about the magic of ’80s music that makes you want to party.
“Rock of Ages is a big, brash, energetic tribute to classic rock, over-the-top ballads and fierce guitar.”
Del Casale and Torrens have been involved in theatre for a combined 20 years, first meeting at Limelight Theatre seven years ago when they were cast in the musical Hairspray.
Since then, they have been in almost every musical staged at the theatre.
“We’re excited to be directing and being at the forefront for once,” Del Casale said.
“If you’ve only seen the movie, you’re likely to be surprised how fun, playful and interactive Rock of Ages on stage is.
“The musical has its own brand and has lots of different songs that weren’t in the movie.”
Torrens said they wanted to do the Broadway show justice.
“It’s a very fast-paced and intricate show, with overlapping elements and scenes,” she said.
“We want to make sure the audience are on their feet by the final bow and rockin’ all the way home.”
Rock of Ages plays at 8pm November 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30, December 5, 6 and 7 with a 2pm matinee November 23. Tickets are $32, $28 concession – book at www.limelighttheatre.com.au or on 0499 954 016.
Please note: the production contains coarse language and sexual themes.
Limelight Theatre is located on Civic Drive, Wanneroo.