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2009 Event Media Release - Jerry Springer: The Opera

Issued 18 September, 2008

Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House
21 – 26 April, 2009

Music by Richard Thomas Book and lyrics by Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas Directed by Gale Edwards
Audacious, blasphemous, scandalous and fabulous.

“The most explosive theatrical event for years, and the biggest thrill at the National for decades…the show sets a new standard for musical theatre” The Observer.

“Achieves nothing less than the transfiguration of trash TV, turning its crass nature into something sublime.” The New York Times

From its phenomenal success in London and New York, Jerry Springer: The Opera is finally coming to Australia. The smash-hit, multi-award-winning production will premiere in the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall from 21 – 26 April, 2009.

Based on the self-flagellatory version of Jerry’s own lurid talk show, Jerry Springer: The Opera is a fascinating mix of the highest form of art and the lowest form of pop culture – opera and daytime television.

In turns hilarious and heart-breaking, this raunchy, high-energy, all-singing, all-dancing production follows Jerry Springer to the afterlife and beyond. Reviled by Christian fundamentalists for allegedly containing 8000 expletives (there are only 149) and hailed by Christian Voice as blasphemous, Jerry Springer presents characters who are each desperate to have their own ‘Jerry Springer’ moment.

Along with an eight piece band, 21 actors play the cast of low-lifes and audience members who reveal their secrets, cuss each other and fight as their embarrassments come to life on TV.

“I used to be a lap-dancing pre-operative transsexual”

The role of Jerry Springer, the non-singing agent provocateur, is yet to be cast as is the part of the Warm Up Man who revs up the audience before turning into a charismatic Prince of Darkness.

Featuring nappy fetishists, dancing Klansmen and a Jesus who admits he is "just a little bit gay", the show poses a moral philosophical debate about the culture in which we live. In an age of Big Brother where television offers both the ultimate validation of our existence and a public confessional for doing so, Jerry Springer’s ‘take no prisoners’ humour mocks our cultural institutions and mores.

Dip me in chocolate and throw me to the lesbians…

With music by Richard Thomas and book and lyrics by Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas, the show created history by winning all four Best Musical Awards (Olivier, Evening Standard, Critic’s Circle and What’s On Stage) and three further Olivier Awards.

This comic opera has acquired cult status. As Richard Thomas said of the TV show, “It’s got tragedy, it’s got violence, there are people screaming at each other and you can’t understand what they’re saying. It’s perfect for opera.”

This premier Australian season of JSTO will be directed by renowned Australian theatre director, Gale Edwards. In demand internationally, Edward’s has brought her masterful touch to productions across the full operatic and theatrical canon.

Celebrated for turning old-fashioned, text-heavy staid productions into heart-racing, blood-thirsty, lustful dramas, Edwards is also recognised for bringing a particular Australian sensibility to all her theatre and opera productions and to the way in which the shows evolve in the rehearsal and development phase. Her most recent production, The Rocky Horror Picture Show played to packed houses in Sydney.

Filled with outrageous language (the F word is in full bloom), this profane, cheeky musical has a sung-through score that ranges from pop and classical to contemporary opera. Satan and Jesus sing a duet and a rousing finale in the grand Broadway tradition will make you click your heels and laugh all the way home whilst mouthing the words you dare not say aloud!

It ain't over till the fat lady says you're sleeping with your brother's sister's twin…

Season Details
21 – 26 April, 2009
Tickets: $89 - $129
Bookings: 02 9250 7777 /

Claire Vince, Senior Publicist
Ph: +61 2 9250 7825


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