Friday, March 29, 2024

Sondheim Trivia Night


In a somewhat belated follow-up to my last post, here are a selection of snaps from last Friday evening’s Stephen Sondheim Trivia Night, a fundraiser for Watch This, “Australia’s first and only Sondheim repertory company”, of which Shane Jones and I are proud patrons.

Aside from Shane and I, our table comprised Melbourne Gallery Director, Stephen McLaughlan and Phillip (I never learned his surname), who we met for the first time that night. If I do say so myself, we made rather a good team. We didn’t win any prizes - not even close - but we didn’t disgrace ourselves either. The main thing was, we had an absolute ball. 

Pictured above, L-R: Phillip, Shane, Sonya Suares, myself and Stephen McLaughlan. Sonya is the Chairperson, Founder and former Artistic Director of Watch This. The outfit she is wearing was the subject of one of the trivia questions posed by Quiz Master, Nick Simpson-Deeks. We were asked to identify the Watch This production she wore it in. That was a question I could answer with some certainty. She wore it as Amy in Company. I ought to know - I saw it three times! She was brilliant in it, as was Nick, in the central role of Bobby.

Pictured above: Mel Hillman and Dean Drieberg, Co-artistic Directors of Watch This.

Pictured above: Nick Simpson-Deeks, Design and Communications, (and leading performer in many a fine Watch This production). 

Foreground, above: fellow trivia contestant, John O’May. A distinguished actor of many years’ standing, John played principal roles in  A Little Night Music and Into the Woods for the company. I’m a longtime admirer of his work, and dearly hope we’ll see him in future Watch This productions. 

Directly below: Watch This Co-Director Dean Drieberg made my evening when he told me that on my recommendation, during his recent trip to London, he managed to catch Old Friends, then in its last days, and loved it as much as I did. Like me (and no doubt, thousands of others during the show’s run), he was moved to tears when, at the very end, Bernadette Peters turned face to the images of Sondheim hovering over the stage (top photo, previous post) and sang Not a Day Goes By.