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Billy Elliot arriving in Auckland


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For those who've waited long enough, Billy Eliot the Musical is scheduled to arrive at the Auckland Theatre Company on 7 October. (No sure for how long.) The full announcement and introductions of the three lads selected to play Billy can be found at https://blog.asb.co.nz/posts/2016/05/announcing-billy-elliot.html

There's also a short video of the boys' tryouts at http://www.nzherald.co.nz/national/news/video.cfm? c_id=1503075&gal_cid=1503075&gallery_id=159994

Hopefully the presentation will be the "full" original Billy Elliot musical as seen in London and New York. The Toronto version toned down the language rather grievously, apparently in response to Canadian law, which removed much of the raw grit and intensity of the original script.


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‚ÄčI am sure that many of us here have only seen Billy Elliot the movie, a wonderful and emotional tribute to the life of a young lad. The stage musical has been out for some time but I have yet to see it since it has not been produced anywhere close to where I live.

Casting youngsters in any staged musical is fraught with risk. My only experience with kids on stage was with several productions of Oliver, the musical. The kids didn't dance as much as appear to brawl their way through the musical numbers...and a rowdy time was had by all which seemed to fit the script.

But from what I recall of Billy Elliot, the very nature of ballet enforces discipline even in the jazz dance scenes. That would mean the casting looks to find some intense and serious dancers for the leading roles. For a young boy looking to make his mark dancing on the stage being cast in this show must be a dream come true.

Damn, they look so young to be so serious, but I wish them well. The future of stage performance begins with lads like this, and from what I see that future looks bright. I was also unaware that there was a PG version of the show without all the harsh language. Of course with the English language being what it is I would probably miss some of the words they cut out. But the show is about dreams and achievement, they could never take that away.

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I remember watching videos of the New York City auditions for Billy several years ago. The three guys they picked were all great young dancers with lots of personality and talent out the ying-yang. I can imagine such an experience changing their lives. They all remarked that getting the role what the greatest thing that had ever happened to them. They all were cute, all got along with each other, and you could just see in their faces and eyes what marvelous kids they were.


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