Jersey Boys Australia Behind The Scenes

I wish I could post some behind the scenes photos or blog an interview with a cast member of Jeresy Boys Australia, but alas it is not to be.

However, a few days ago I was privileged to be a part of an education experience for Jersey Boys that involved a walk on the set after the show and a Q&A session with the Company Manager, Resident Director, Choreographer and Musical Director.

Did you know?

  • Jersey Boys Australia cost AU $10 million to mount in July 2009, on par with the US $8 million Jersey Boys cost to put on Broadway in November 2005
  • Jersey Boys Australia has about 60 people working backstage every night at the Princess Theatre, Melbourne, but this only represents half the number needed backstage at The Gershwin Theatre each night for Wicked on Broadway
  • all the music in Jersey Boys Australia is played live by a band in a room underneath the stage (with the exception of two bars in the opening number)
  • While Jersey Boys Australia is confirmed until April 2010 at the 1,600-seat Princess Theatre, it is hoped Melbourne will be home to Jersey Boys for another six months to come, presumably before moving on to Sydney(?)

    Jersey Boys Original Melbourne Cast. Photo: The Age.

  • the fore stage of the Jersey Boys set covers the traditional orchestra pit, which was filled with concrete for the hydraulic lifts needed to bring the stand-microphones and actors up from beneath (and will be jack-hammered out again when the show leaves this venue)
  • Other than London, Melbourne is the only city outside North America to host Jersey Boys so far
  • Two of the original Four Seasons members today have a financial interest in Jersey Boys
  • there are actually four Frankie Valli’s in the Jersey Boys Melbourne company (Bobby Fox being the main one) and casting for four men less than 5′ 9″ with “that” falsetto took more than 9 months
  • all the actors play their instruments live on stage each performance
  • While many compare the jukebox musical style of Jersey Boys to that of Mamma Mia, the audience demographic couldn’t be more different … while groups of women flocked in droves to see Mamma Mia, Jersey Boys audience’s are filled with groups of men! (come on boys!)
  • High school students can go to see Jersey Boys in Melbourne on Tuesday evenings and Saturday matinees with their teachers for only $51 (because Jersey Boys is on the VCAA playlist for VCE Theatre Studies)

If you haven’t seen Jersey Boys in Melbourne yet, I’d highly recommend getting in fast. This is a wonderful show and from all reports every bit the quality of Jersey Boys on Broadway.

Jersey Boys Australia

Tickets at Ticketek Australia

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6 Responses

  1. ann says:

    can someone tell me who are the current members of the jersey boys?
    if u can, thanks!!

    need it for a project as soon as possible!!!! :)

    once again, THANKS!!

  2. Robert Fountain says:

    Don’t need to know. On Saturday 2nd October 2010 I saw Jersey Boys at the Theatre Royal in Sydney. Why did the script writers insert the words f*** and f****** into the cast’s dialogue? I suggest it was totally unnecessary. I was greatly offended and embarrassed by the swearing used in this public entertainment venue. Having been taken to live theatre and musicals as a boy by my parents (at the original Theater Royal) my expectations of good quality entertainment have been dashed again. I think that contemporary writers are devoid of the literary skill, wit and knowledge of how to entertain folk. They appear to be hooked on the use of gutter language as a means to shock folk and just are ignorant of how to make people laugh. What ever happened to the use of innuendo and humour? They ought to take a look at the script and songs used for stage shows with much bigger casts such as “the Canterbury Tales” with Johnny Lockwood back in the 1960s. Jersey Boys just was not worth the $180 I paid. The directors need to get script writers of much better quality. I give it one out of ten for a couple of decent songs. I tell all my contacts not to waste their money to go and listen to a bunch of yobs swearing all night. Robert.

  3. Justin Cash says:

    Agree with you on the swearing front, Robert. I, too, thought the swearing in Jersey Boys was unnecessary when I saw it in Melbourne. It certainly didn’t add any value to the show. As for the songs vs script/plot debate, well it is a Jukebox Musical, after all. As with the likes of Mamma Mia, a plot thrown around a back-catalogue of songs from a particular artist. Although in the case of Jersey Boys, done much better than Mamma Mia, but that’s just my personal opinion.

  4. Brad H says:

    I haven’t seen the JERSEY BOYS musical yet, and I’m not familiar enough with their music to be very interested in going. But my mother, who grew up in the fifties, went to see it recently and was impressed. Regarding the language used on it- isn’t that an accurate reflection of the way working-class youths from New Jersey spoke at the time?

    • Justin Cash says:

      Valid point, Brad. We’d have to assume historical accuracy is the reason the swearing was in the show. I suppose Robert and myself were suggesting the (level of) swearing in Jersey Boys wasn’t necessary to make it a great musical and to some extent became a negative feature of the show. Although Jersey Boys’ demographic is for an adult audience, any teenagers or younger children in the house would have got an earful. West Side Story successfully portrays New York street gangs without any swearing at all. Perhaps this is the model Jersey Boys should have followed? Or maybe the language in West Side Story is too sanitised to be an accurate reflection and as your mother suggests, Jersey Boys got it spot on?

  5. Dotty com. says:

    Back in the 70′s when I was young and good looking { ah..memories } I met an American and
    he literally couldn’t put a sentence together without “F” in every second word.
    He couldn’t understand the young men in our group telling him to ease up on the bad language
    and in fact couldn’t stop himself. It was second nature to him.
    With that in mind I’d say the script was well justified to include the swearing and possibly rather
    restrained with how it actually was.
    Rave reviews for this production are warranted, it was fantastic.

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