National Operatic & Dramatic Association
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Priscilla, Queen of the Desert


21st April 2018


Darlington Operatic Society


Darlingotn Hippodrome

Type of Production



Martyn Knight asst Joanne Hand

Musical Director

Nigel Ball


Martyn Knight asst Joanne Hand


Author: Rhoda Fraser

DOS you blew the windows out, and the roof right off the Hippodrome, wow what a show, the audience were out of their seats, they loved it. Bursting with colour, energy, rude and belly laugh jokes, such brilliant one liners, so many I can’t even quote one. The way the music was slotted into the script was awesome, each time we smiled, such great classic pop music. This is a special show allowing the Orchestra to let rip, Nigel Ball the Musical Director did just that with his 8 musicians, the theatre was rocking.

Director and Choreographer, Martyn Knight, and his right hand girl, Joanne Hand, grabbed this show and ran with it, at top speed! You both should be so proud of yourselves, the audience were saying, “This show would stand in the West End”, enough said.

This FAB show followed the adventures of three friends, Tick a drag queen, his friend Bernadette, a transsexual, and another drag queen called Adam. They travelled across the desert in Australia on a converted bus they called Priscilla, to “do a gig”. There were uneasy moments when they didn’t see eye to eye, the bus breaks down, and the help of Bob a mechanic is needed, but they eventually make it to Allice Springs where Tick meets his wife and son, to the surprise of the other two. The three friends realise they have formed a team and they sing finally on Ayres rock “We Belong”.

On this journey the three leading roles were taken by, Nicholas Fletcher-Holmes (Tick) Julian Cound (Bernadette) and Luke Oldfield (Adam). These three actors were never off the stage, their costume changes were sometimes minutes only and they never put a foot wrong. I applaud you all.

All the 3 had what I call precious moments, Tick had to meet his son for the first time, the song “Always on my mind” was one of those moments.

Bernadette gave us a lovely portrayal, with beautiful poise, expected of a “Les Girl” of course. She kindly but firmly kept the team together. “A Fine Romance” with Bob gave us a look at a tender side of the character.

Adam, was dramatic, and always out there singing with such spark particularly when Lip syncing on the top of the bus, Amazing.

The three worked so well together, and drove the show forward at such pace it was breath taking, and that was while looking good in killer costumes, wigs and shoes.

Keeping pace with them were three young women, Rhiannon Walker, Jenny Poole and Tori McDougall collectively known as the Divas. What fun they had and what wonderful harmony and style.

On the night I attended the young son, Benji was played by Matthew Scott, he had such clear tone in the duet with his Father, DOS see you keep your eye on him, a future star.

The cameo part of Bob’s wife, Cynthia played by Lisa-Marie Watson, was mesmerising in her specialist dance, so funny.

The whole show was drawn together by a lively Chorus giving a hundred and ten percent, wearing outrageous, wacky costumes full of colour and glitz. This brings me to say “Thank you” to the Wardrobe team and Dressers, a well organised team headed by Linda Sams. I also heard it said, “The wigs deserve an Oscar,” all down to Steven Metcalfe.

DOS you should be so proud of yourselves, Yes, Yes, Yes, you nailed it.