About this Session
Each year we dedicate a Session to exploring the songs of one or more theatre writers.
This month we will be taking you deep into the catalogues of two prolific Broadway writers, Jeanine Tesori and Lynn Ahrens. Between these two incredible ladies they have written and contributed to over 20 shows. You can expect to hear songs from shows such as A Man of No Importance, Anastasia, Caroline, or Change, Fun Home, Lucky Stiff, My Favourite Year, Once on This Island, Ragtime, Rocky the Musical, Seussical, Shrek, and Violet.
Doors are open at 5:45pm. Food and beverages are available from the bar.
Tickets to be in the audience will go on sale on Friday 16 October. Unfortunately, you are unable to book a whole table – however the Broadway Sessions team will be allocating seats so you can sit with your family and friends. Tickets bought under the same name will automatically be seated together. If you have any other seating requests, please email them to [email protected] by 5pm on Tuesday 20 October. We may not be able to accommodate any requests after this time.
For the opportunity to perform, visit our registration page and submit two song options written by Jeanine Tesori or Lynn Ahrens. Performer registrations will close on Sunday 11 October.
Jemma Allen (She/her)
Jemma is chuffed that Broadway Sessions is finally back!! She is here for a good time and can't wait to jam with the band and see all of her lovely theatre friends again!! Yay!!!
Mark is a respected opera, cabaret and concert singer, with a passion for music theatre. He has toured South Australia with State Opera, SINGular productions and the Adelaide Art Orchestra. Mark produced and performed in his own sell out swing show – Mark Oates and the Daniel Brunner Pretty Big Band – for the 2009 and 2011 Adelaide Fringe Festivals. For the Adelaide Festival, Mark sung the roles of Ruffiak in Ligeti’s Le Grande Macabre and Street Singer in Leonard Bernstein’s Mass.
For State Opera SA, Mark premiered the role of “the Cantor” in Astor Piazzolla’s Maria de Buenos Aires, a co-production with Leigh Warren and Dancers which was reprised for the 2011 Brisbane Festival. He also performed Joe in The Station (Howard Blake), and John Styx in Orpheus in the Underworld (Offenbach). Last year Mark performed in the world premiere of the full Philip Glass trilogy for State Opera SA, including the role of Arjuna in Satyagraha. In the two weeks prior to the opening night of Broadway Sessions, Mark will be part of the State Opera SA chorus in Faust and the Verdi Requiem before travelling to Canberra for two concerts with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra.
Mark has also worked with many Adelaide based musical theatre companies. He was an Oscart and Curtain Call winner and Critic’s Circle nominee for his portrayal of Jean Valjean in The G&S Society’s Les Misérables. For The G&S Society Mark has also played the Baker in Into the Woods and the Pirate King in The Pirates of Penzance. He premiered Horton the Elephant in the award winning Seussical the Musical and portrayed Utterson in Jekyll and Hyde for The Hills Musical Company. Other roles include Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar for Northern Light Theatre Company, Archibald Craven in The Secret Garden for both The Therry Dramatic Society and The G&S Society, Enoch Snow in Carousel for Swell Productions/MS Society and was part of the original cast of It’s A Dad thing for SINGular productions. Mark has also played “man” in several productions, including Songs for a New World and I Love you, You’re Perfect, Now Change!
AJ Patel (He/Him)
AJ Patel is ecstatic to be performing at Broadway Sessions once again! AJ was born and raised in Maryland, USA, where he performed in several musicals since the age of 8. When he's not in class studying musical theatre at The University of Adelaide, he likes to spend his time eating. AJ would like to thank his friends and family back home who helped have him throughout his journey in the theatre.
Alisa has been performing in musicals in Adelaide for over 10 years. Alisa's favourite roles include Gary Coleman in Avenue Q (MBM, 2011), Reno in Dusty (The Met, 2011) and Enid in Legally Blonde the Musical (Hills, 2014). Most recently Alisa performed in Violet (Davine Interventionz) for the Adelaide Fringe. Currently Alisa is rehearsing for Aida with the Hills Musical Company. Alisa has trained in jazz, tap, contemporary and hip hop dance and has vocal tuition with Kirsty Roberts.
Andrew James Crispe
Andrew is an established freelance performer and vocal coach who has performed professionally in and around Adelaide. He has been a member of the State Opera of SA’s Chorus since 2009. Andrew‘s first foray into the world of Music Theatre was in 2000, when he was encouraged to audition for the Gilbert & Sullivan Society’s back-to-back production of HMS Pinafore and Trial By Jury, and since then he has not looked back!
Andrew won his first leading role in 2006, and has gone on to play a large number of leading and supporting roles throughout Adelaide’s community theatre. Andrew has been nominated for Best Male Performance by the Critics Circle Awards for his role as Don Lockwood in Singin’ In The Rain, and by the Adelaide Theatre Guide for the same role, as well as his portrayal of The Beast in Disney's Beauty And The Beast. For one of his most recent productions Andrew won the TASA Best Male Performance Award for his portrayal of Edward Bloom in BIG FISH – a show which also won the TASA MusiCal Award. Andrew co-wrote and performed in the sold-out season of Villain-Ville: A Musical Exploration of Villainy and Evil in the 2015 Fringe Festival. His most recent appearances this year include a return to the role of Curly McLain (for the third time) in an outdoor production of Oklahoma (On A Farm) with Emma Knights Productions, The Preacher in Davine Interventionz production of Violet, a return to the role of the Major General in Emma Knights Productions’ fourth season of Pirates On The Popeye, and lastly as Pontius Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar.
Andrew played the role of Marius in both seasons of Les Misérables with the Gilbert & Sullivan’s Society in 2008 and 2009, and he is overjoyed to be coming back for yet another season with them only this time as the infamous Javert – a role he has coveted since he was little!
Ben Francis (He/Him)
Ben has many years of musical experience. His training has taken him around Australia, to Hong Kong, Paris and to London where has performed in the West End and The Royal Albert Hall. He has a number of musical theatre credits including The Little Mermaid (Prince Eric), Pirates of Penzance (Frederic), Jesus Christ Superstar (Jesus) and Barnum (P.T Barnum). Opera credits with the State Opera of South Australia include Cloudstreet! (Lon Lamb), Carmen and La Bohemé. Drama credits with Independent Theatre include Peter and Alice (Peter Pan), Amadeus (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart), Brideshead Revisited (Sebastien Flyte) and Old Wicked Songs (Stephan Hoffman).
In 2017 and 2018, Ben produced and starred in Private Peaceful, which won the Theatre Association of South Australia’s ‘DramatiCAL’ award for Best Drama. Ben was also awarded Best Youth Actor for his performance. Off stage, Ben’s accolades include director, musical director, orchestral conductor, producer and writer. Ben has musically directed and conducted several local productions, including Bugsy Malone and 13! with Adelaide Youth Theatre, and Beauty and the Beast with Shane Davidson Presents. He is currently working as Musical Director of Chicago with Pelican Productions.
As co-founder of the highly successful youth performing arts company, Promise Adelaide, Ben has provided opportunities for over 100 young performers while raising over $20,000 for charity organisations. Ben is also the lead vocalist and musical arranger of The 60 Four, where he scales the vocal heights of Frankie Valli in venues around Australia in Adelaide’s first-class ‘60s tribute act.
Blake has been performing in the South Australian musical theatre scene since his debut in Therry society's production of Big Fish in 2016. Since then he has worked with HMC on the two productions and three State Opera of South Australia and Elder Conservatorium collaborations being Die Fledermaus, Don Pasquale and Dido and Aeneas. In 2020 Blake took part in Shane Warne the Musical, presented by Segue Productions at the Adelaide Fringe Festival. Recently Blake performed as Cinderella's Prince and the Wolf in Into the Woods.
Blake has just completed his debut cabaret season in the 2021 Adelaide Fringe Festival with great success.
One of Chloe's earliest memories is twirling and singing in an Adelaide Crows football guernsey. Following this passion, she landed her first professional role in the touring production of Turandot in 2008, as well as starring as Ariel in the 2013 Australian premiere of The Little Mermaid. Chloe loved being part of Big Dreams – a 2019 Book Week show.
Throughout her time at WAAPA, Chloe has had the opportunity to play Cora in Atlantis (Matthew Robinson. Workshop) and Diane Lorimer in 42nd Street (dir. Jason Langley) as well as being a featured soloist in both Rent (dir. Adam Mitchell) and Chicago (dir. Crispin Taylor). Chloe filmed Vivid ‘magination, a music video with WASA where she played female lead Drew which was released in 2018.
Most recently Chloe returned from performing in Disney’s PJ Masks live show in Singapore with Marilla productions.
Claire is a child sized adult who likes hats, op shops and short walks along the beach. You might remember her for her classic work as the face of KFC Zinger Burgers back in 1993.
Cooper, 17, loves all aspects of performing. He made his professional debut in 2016 in The Sound of Music. Cooper joined Pelican Productions in 2016 - his highlights include playing Orpheus (Hadestown), Moonface Martin (Anything Goes) and going full drag in Priscilla Queen of the Desert.
Cooper is a Drama and Music student at Brighton Secondary School and is part of the 2022 Class of Caberet program.
Cooper receives his vocal coaching from the fabulous Carolyn Ferrie and dances at Barbara Jayne Dance Centre.
When he isn’t singing or dancing you might find Cooper busking at Glenelg.
I have two arms and feet. But my feet are not at the end of my arms. That would just be plain silly. I like to sing, especially in other people's showers. But not while showering - that would just be weird. I have been singing since before fire, but not long after the wheel. I trained under a number of singing teachers but as a result of claustrophobia I found it better to stand next them instead. As a child I would spontaneously sing in class, as an accountant I would spontaneously sing in the office. I was soon sent back to class. I love chocolate.
Ellis Dolan (he/him)
Ellis Dolan toured with the company of School of Rock as an Understudy for Dewey Finn and as a Swing – travelling all over Australia, China, and New Zealand.
He spent 2017 studying Musical Theatre at NIDA; appearing in the Sydney Theatre Company production of Chimerica as part of the NIDA Ensemble.
He has appeared in several productions around Adelaide, including Evita (The Met) in which he portrayed Che; The Producers (HMC) as the Stormtrooper; Oliver! (Shane Davidson Presents) as Bill Sykes; as well as ensemble roles in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (HMC) and Jesus Christ Superstar (G&S Society). Off-stage, he acted as Assistant Director for You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown and Smokey Joe's Cafe (HMC).
He also toured across Australia, portraying the role of Peter Dutton, as part of Abbott: The Musical (George Glass Productions), performing as part of the Canberra Comedy Festival and Melbourne International Comedy Festival, as well as a sell-out run in the Adelaide Fringe Festival.
Outside of performing, Ellis is a writer – having completed his Honours in Creative Arts: Creative Writing at Flinders University. He’s currently struggling through the third draft of a novel and is constantly side-tracked by wanting to write reviews and film analysis; because of this, nothing seems to get done, but he has a lot of fun doing it.
He made his directorial debut with Edges as part of the 2018 Adelaide Fringe Festival and loved every second of working with such fine people.
12 year old Emma Good has had a busy 2021 doing shows with Peter Combe at the Adelaide Fringe Festival, Marion Cultural Centre and Capri Theatre as well as various performances with the South Australian Public Primary Schools (SAPPS) Choir. She is excited to be playing Maddison in School of Rock with Pelican Productions in August and Gertie Blossom in Dr Dolittle Jr with Adelaide Theatre Academy in October.
Gus has been performing theatre in Adelaide with several companies continually since 2003, but did his first show in 2001. That one took him two years to recover !!! During these crazy current Covid times we have been so fortunate to have Broadway Sessions for both performers & audience alike. Whilst he loves performing onstage, cabaret performance is not as common for him so performing at Broadway Sessions will be an enjoyable experience...hopefully for everyone 😉
Jaxon Joy (He/Him)
Jaxon is 17 years old and is currently receiving vocal coaching from David Gauci and studying year 12 at Gleeson College. He has starred as Captain Hook in Adelaide Theatre Academy's 2020 Adelaide Fringe Festival production of Peter Pan, a production of 13: The Musical playing the lead role of Evan Goldman along with the Adelaide Fringe performance of Oliver! playing the role of Fagin. Jaxon found his love of music when he was 4 years old when he began lessons with Theatre Bugs, after a small break he joined Deborah Kaye Dance Studio's where he took part in theatre, hip hop and singing classes. This sparked his love for musical theatre which led him to audition for Singing in the Rain Jr. in 2017 where he was part of the ensemble. His love for theatre and singing grew and he became a singing student with Theatre Bugs and in 2018 successfully auditioned for the part of Mr Bernstein in Little Shop of Horrors.
Jaxon has most recently performed the role of Courfreyac in Northern Light Theatre Compny's 2022 production of Les Misérables as well as the 2021 Class of Cabaret and as Amos in Pelican Productions 2021 production of Chicago at the Thebarton Theatre. Jaxon's favourite musician is Elton John, however, he enjoys most genres of music. His favourite Broadway musicals are The Book of Mormon, Hamilton, Falsettos and Beetlejuice. Jaxon has recently completed his first musical production position in Scouts SA's 2021 Adelaide Gang Show season, with his Music Directorial debut coming up in September/October with Adelaide Gang Show in their 2022 Season, aptly named Seasons. Keep an eye out for Jaxon's premiere cabaret in October, Sondheim and Me, at the Star Theatre's Back-2-Back Festival!
Jeremy Thomas is 18 years old and fresh out of the youth theatre scene here in Adelaide. He has hit the ground running, studying Musical Theatre at University of Adelaide and hopes to continue this passion into a career.
John Mondelo (he/him)
John is a graduate of the Bachelor of Musical Theatre at the Elder Conservatorium, and has previously completed a BA in Classical Voice at the University of Western Australia, the Certificate course at WAAPA in Musical Theatre, and the Music Theatre Intensive at the Stella Adler Studio NYC. John is also executive producer and co-founder of the theatrical collective EXEUNT (Pursued By A Bear) Productions which most recently performed Rodgers & Hammerstein's: A Grand Night for Singing at the Adelaide Fringe.
Kristin Stefanoff (she/her)
Kristin has over ten years experience as a musical theatre performer in Adelaide. Favourite roles include: Muriel (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels - Hills Musical Company 2022); Laura (High Fidelity - Hills Musical Company 2021); Vivienne (Legally Blonde - The MET 2021); Simone (Shane Warne The Musical - Segue Productions 2020); Elizabeth (If/Then - Segue Productions 2018); Cathy (The Last Five Years - Segue Productions 2017); Clara (The Light In The Piazza - Davine Productions 2016); Inga (Young Frankenstein - Marie Clark Musical Theatre 2014); Smitty (How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying - Marie Clark Musical Theatre 2013); and Ensemble/Lady of The Lake Understudy (Spamalot - Marie Clark Musical Theatre 2018).
Kristin holds a Bachelor of Music Education from the Elder Conservatorium, majoring in Classical Piano, and has extensive accompanying and pit experience. Music Direction credits include: Heathers: The Musical (Segue Productions 2019); Calamity Jane (Marie Clark Musical Theatre 2014); Poor Expectations (Investigator College 2014); Mulan Jr (Investigator College 2013); and Honk! (Investigator College 2011).
Kristin studies voice with Sarah Jane Whiteley Voice Studio, and teaches piano, voice and violin.
Maya’s love of musical theatre began at an early age, with her journey in performance beginning with Pelican Productions. Since then, Maya’s theatre credits include The Gilbert & Sullivan Society’s Thoroughly Modern Millie (2016) and Les Misérables (2017), Lydian Productions and Irregular Productions’ Godspell (2018) as the ‘By My Side’ soloist, Marie Clark Musical Theatre’s Anything Goes (2019) as Hope Harcourt, Segue Productions’ Heathers (2019) as Heather McNamara, and most recently Davine Productions' Beautiful: The Carole King Musical as Cynthia Weil (2020). Maya is a primary school Dance/Drama teacher, and she finds so much joy in being able to share her love of musical theatre with her students.
Mim Sarre (She/Her)
Millicent Sarre (she/her) is a singer & songwriter, cabaret artist, music theatre performer and vocal coach.
Mim studied Music and Theatre at Graceland University, USA, before returning to her hometown of Adelaide, South Australia, where she has been actively involved in the music theatre scene. Her notable roles to date include Veronica Sawyer in Heathers the Musical (Segue Productions, 2019), Wendla Bergmann in Spring Awakening (Hills Musical Company 2017), Ivy in Ivy + Bean the Musical (The Gemini Collective, 2018 – Australian Premiere), Sally Brown in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Hills Musical Company, 2015) and Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors (Graceland University, 2013).
In June 2019, she premiered her original cabaret show, Friendly Feminism for the Mild Mannered, in the Adelaide Cabaret Fringe, and revived the show for the Adelaide Fringe Festival 2020, where it played a sold-out extended season and was a 3-time award winner in the Adelaide Fringe Awards.
Since diving into his passion for drama and musical theatre in high school, Nick hasn't stopped! He's performed in a number of plays and through he enjoys traditional theatre, his heart rests with singing. He will never forget his first musical Legally Blonde and has since performed twice at the Adelaide Fringe Festival. He never lets his studies get in the way of strengthening his skills and he enjoys pushing his limits. His 2019 highlights include a radio play of It's a Wonderful Life with Wings2Fly Theatre where he performed several roles, and Heathers The Musical with Segue Productions in the ensemble role of Preppy Stud.
Nicole is no stranger to the stage. Her passion began in Singapore; as President and Production Manager in the Drama Club, lead roles in her school's productions and involvement in the Literature Festival and Singapore Youth Festival. Moving to Australia, her love for musical theatre grew with lead roles and as Choreographer (Seussical, The Lion King Jr). She also joined Harvest Rain's Adelaide arena tours (Hairspray, Grease). Recently, Nicole achieved a spot in the semi-finals in the AOC Initiative. Currently, Nicole studies with the University of Adelaide's Elder Conservatorium, studying Music Theatre, as seen in their debut production of Spring Awakening. Nicole is thrilled to perform at Broadway Sessions!
Oliver John (He/him)
Oliver is 20 years old and has been performing in musical theatre since 2008. He has worked as a performing arts and private singing teacher, and more recently as a musical director. In youth theatre, Oliver has played Seymour Krelborn in Little Shop of Horrors (Adelaide Theatre Academy), Rev. Shaw Moore in Footloose (The Parks Theatre), Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast Jr. (ATA), Sonny Malone in Xanadu Jr. (ATA), James Bailey in Barnum (March Productions), and Boq in Wicked (Adelaide Youth Theatre). More recently, Oliver has been in the ensemble of Segue Productions' Heathers the Musical, and in the ensemble of Legally Blonde with the Met. In August 2021, Oliver played his most demanding role yet; Dewey Finn in School of Rock with Pelican Productions.
Oliver travelled to the United States in January of 2019 with a select group of Adelaide Youth Theatre performers to compete in the Junior Theatre Festival in Atlanta. They performed a version of Madagascar: A Musical Adventure in which Oliver starred as Marty the Zebra, and worked with Broadway professionals in New York. Oliver was also lucky enough to be a part of the 2019 Class of Cabaret programme. After months of mentorship from industry professionals Michael Griffiths and Amelia Ryan, he performed a cabaret set as a part of the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.
Professionally, Oliver performed in the kids' production Snowmageddon: Penguins of Antarctica in July 2018 with Heaps Good Productions, and made his music directorial debut in December 2020 with Adelaide Youth Theatre’s Aladdin Kids.
Rebecca comes from a rich musical heritage and has been performing for most of her life. Versatile in her style she enjoys performing in all musical genres which has led to her performing as a soloist with many different groups and for varying audiences. She has been a leading soloist with Adelaide’s Soul Factor Gospel Choir for the past 16 years, performs regularly with her Sisters, The Raymond Sisters and for five years was the vocal soloist with the Melbourne Staff Band with whom she toured Australia, Korea and the UK where she had the privilege of singing in the Royal Albert Hall, London.
Rebecca performs corporately as a Singer and Actor. Appearing as a soloist at varying events in Adelaide and Nationally and in Theatre. Memorable roles include the role of Violet Hilton in SideShow (2018) and Aida in Aida (2017) with Hills Musical Company, Sandra Bloom in Big Fish with Therry Dramatic Society (2016), Laurey in Oklahoma! The immersive farm experience with Emma Knights Productions (2016 & 2017), and Cosette in Les Misérables with the G&S Society (2008 & 2009).
When not performing Rebecca teaches singing, has her own Mary Kay Cosmetic business and is a makeup artist. She also teaches Skincare & Self Esteem classes in schools and groups in the community.
Sienna has been performing since a young age and is currently undertaking voice lessons with Millicent Sarre. She's performed as Mrs Potts in Beauty and the Beast Jr (Adelaide Theatre Academy) and Ronnett in Adelaide Theatre Academy's ATG nominated Little Shop of Horrors. Sienna was nominated for TASA's Best Female Youth Performer for her portrayal of Kira in Xanadu Jr and performed as Amy Beecher in March Productions'sold-outt season of Barnum.
Simon Barnett (He/him)
Simon first developed a taste for performing through high school drama and Scout theatre, but left that passion dormant for many years before rediscovering it in the ensemble of HMC's Sideshow (2018). Since that, he has had parts in may plays and musicals including Kurt in Heathers (Segue 2019), Charlie Marlow in She Stoops to Conquer (Blue Sky Theatre, 2020), Rapunzel's Prince in Into the Woods (Elephant in the Room Productions, 2020), Alfie in One Man, Two Guvnors (Blue Sky Theatre, 2021) and most recently Warner in Legally Blonde (The Met, 2021). When he's not performing, Simon is a wannabe economist who has just completed his masters.
Martin Cheney (Piano/Musical Director)
Louis Cann (Bass)
Louis has been playing both double bass and bass guitar as long as he can remember. Beginning with lessons at the age of 7, he quickly developed his skills and decided that music was the career for him. Louis began playing for Musical Theatre shows in 2011, with the Northern Lights Theatre Company’s production of Beauty and the Beast, which coincidentally, was the beginning of a long-standing working relationship with Musical Director, Peter Johns! Since, Louis has played for many theatre companies around Adelaide, including Adelaide Youth Theatre, Lydian Productions, Pelican Productions, Davine Productions, Irregular Productions, Marie Clarke Musical Theatre, The Gilbert & Sullivan Society of South Australia, and Hills Musical Company. Some of his favourite shows to play for have been In the Heights, for Pelican Productions in 2019, and Beautiful: The Carol King Musical, for Davine Productions in 2020. In 2018, Louis had the privilege of playing in the pit for the Gordon Frost Organisation’s touring production of The Wizard of Oz. Louis graduated from the Elder Conservatorium of Music in 2016, with a Bachelor of Music (Classical Performance.) That same year, he began performing as a casual member of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra - some of his favourite performances include Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in Concert at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre, and Last Night of the Proms at the Adelaide Festival Centre.
Max Ziliotto (Drums/Percussion)
Max has been playing percussion for 15 years, and has been involved in numerous music performance groups throughout that time. Attending Marryatville High School 2006-2010, and being a part of the Raiders Drum Corps since 2007, he learned performance etiquette pretty quickly, and grew comfortable performing in front of people. Max participated in the Big Band program at high school, and as such was able to attend Generations in Jazz multiple times. His drumkit playing further improved after high school where, during his studies for his Bachelor of Music (Percussion), he was a part of the Jazz SA Youth Superbands. While studying his Bachelors, Max competed in and won First Place in the 2011 MSO Snare Competition.
Musical theatre has been part of his life since 2009, and as luck would have it, Max has been working with Peter Johns since his very first show! Productions Max has been involved in include: Sweeney Todd, Fame, Spamalot, Beauty and the Beast, Oliver!, Annie, The Full Monty, You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, Violet, Wicked, Bring It On!, Edges, Beautiful, Mamma Mia, and Les Miserables.
Outside of music, Max has developed a passion for gridiron, and plays for the Port Adelaide Spartans. He is also a personal trainer, and his love for craft beers is pretty strong!