Neglected Musicals presents ‘Variations’

VariationsNeglected Musicals recently announced that the next presentation will be Variations, a musical by Nick Enright and Terence Clarke, the fabulous Australian musical theatre team that bought audiences The Venetian Twins and Summer Rain.


Directed by Christopher Hurrell, with musical direction by Andrew Worboys, Variations will have two presentations on Monday 25 March at Theatre 19 – The Darlinghurst Theatre.


Variations was a quiet landmark in Australian musical theatre at a time when the Australian musical was still mostly limited to versions of outback-themed vaudeville,” Hurrell said. “Variations marked one of the first times Australians heard the stories, themes and places of their daily lives expressed in a musical, where the world of the story was also the world of its audience.”


A story about the search for love and fulfillment in Sydney in 1982, Variations involves three generations of Australian women. The oldest, a cellist who finds a violinist to accompany her in duets, and the middle one, Meg, a successful career woman and single parent of a 17-year-old girl, both have their turn with finding a suitor. The story thickens when Meg’s sister-in-law unexpectedly lands on her doorstep, a fugitive from an uncomprehending husband.


The original production was directed by John Bell and played at The Nimrod from December 2, 1982 to January 8, 1983. It stared Robert Alexander, Philip Dodd, Vivienne Garrett, Nancye Hayes, Brian James, Patricia Kennedy, Kim Krejus, Deidre Rubenstein and George Spartels.


Terence Clarke said this production of Variations is one of the best that him and Nick Enright ever worked on together. 


“The need for love runs throughout Nick’s oeuvre as a dark subterranean river,” Clarke said. “In Variations the river surfaces, finds the light of common day and declares itself.”


Likewise, Producer Michelle Guthrie said she is “so pleased that we are able to present this Australian musical.”


Neglected Musicals is an initiative dedicated to presenting musical theatre that has never (or rarely) been seen in Australia, whether it be that the musicals were not considered commercial enough for an Australian season or they just didn’t get picked up by an Australian producer. Launching in 2010, Neglected Musicals has presented eight musicals to date and this will be the first performance of an Australian musical.


To book tickets to one of the two shows, call 0498 960 586, visit or visit in-person Theatre 19 at Greenknowe Ave, Potts Point. Tickets are $35 each.