After a successful three year stint on the London’s West End and a transfer to Broadway, Priscilla Queen of the Desert’s next stop on its UK tour began in Cardiff on Tuesday. Jordan Nicholls goes to see what the glittery hubbub is all about.
Based on the 1994 Australian film, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, starring Terrence Stamp and Hugo Weaving, the musical follows two drag queens and a transsexual woman’s journey through the Aussie outback in a bus named ‘Priscilla’ – what’s not to love?
Jason Donovan, who played ‘Tick’ on the Original West End production, reprises his role here and brings warmth and compassion to the part of a drag queen who desperately tries to build a relationship with his young son. Aside from the camp madness of the show, mostly brought on by drag queen ‘Felicia Jollygoodfellow’, there are some really heartwarming and touching moments. There was not a dry eye in the house when it came to Donovan’s rendition of ‘You Were Always On My Mind’ for his son.
Richard Grieve was very convincing as transsexual Bernadette who provided witty and downright hilarious remarks; his addition completed the powerhouse vocals of the three divas, truly making the evening a spectacle of an evening.
The theatre is transformed into a disco for much of the show, featuring hits such as ‘I Will Survive’, ‘I Say A Little Prayer’ and ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’, making it impossible to resist singing along to at times. These hits, their performers, and the incredible costumes make Priscilla the best feel-good trip to the theatre you are ever likely to experience.
Full to the brim of glitz, glamour and camp fun, Priscilla is the perfect way to kick away your January blues!
Priscilla Queen of the Desert is showing now at the Wales Millennium Centre until Saturday 18th January 2014