Start spreading the news… The Gold Coast is getting its first major Broadway production! In a highly exciting development for our arts and culture scene, worldwide smash hit, Come From Away, will be showing at Home of The Arts for a three week season in July.
Set to inspire Gold Coast audiences, Come From Away is based on the real life stories of 7,000 passengers who became grounded in a rural Canadian town in Newfoundland. When American airspace shut down in the wake of the September 11 tragedy, they were unexpectedly stuck far from home in the middle of nowhere for days, and the small community that welcomed the ‘come from aways’ into their lives provided hope and compassion to those in need.
To create the musical, writers Irene Sankoff and David Hein went straight to the source, travelling to Newfoundland for the 10th Anniversary commemoration of that fateful week. They collected hundreds of hours of interviews that they distilled into a 100-minute show. Every character in the musical was inspired by the real stories.
THERE’S A BUZZ ABOUT TOWN
Cast member, Zoe Gertz, was in the first Australian performance of Come From Away in Melbourne in 2019, where it broke box office records, and is delighted to reprise her role. As she tells it, the very unique approach from the writers have resulted in a completely different kind of musical.
“Even people who hate traditional musicals love Come From Away,” she laughs, recounting common audience reactions. “It’s a very different feel to your typical musical. It feels more like a play with music. There’s no big production numbers – the story keeps rolling along at a cracking pace so it almost has a cinematic feel. There are lines in the show that are almost verbatim what our real life counterparts said. I don’t think there’s any other musical that is not only a true story, but draws from real people so acutely.”
Come From Away has taken out trophies in both the Tony® and Olivier awards (the musical theatre equivalent of the Grammys) and has critics gushing with phrases like “masterful”, “soul stirring”, and “irresistible” being thrown around like confetti.
Zoe says that while audiences should be excited, there’s just as much interest around the Gold Coast production among her peers. “I’m running into musical theatre mates and now it’s been announced we’re going to the Gold Coast, there’s a real buzz about it,” she says. “Everyone’s thrilled about the new possibilities for our industry. It’s unchartered territory for a lot of us and it’s so exciting to be going somewhere different.”
While Zoe has been on a couple of day trips to the Gold Coast while doing productions in Brisbane, she’s looking forward to exploring all the city has to offer. “I’m a sucker for theme parks and love riding roller coasters,” she admits. “But this time I’, really looking forward to discovering the dining scene. I love fine dining and everyone’s telling me I need to visit Broadbeach. I’ve heard there are lots of lovely restaurants around so I’ll probably be found here most of my days off, feasting on gorgeous meals and fine wine.”
Tickets for Come From Away at HOTA are on sale March 31st and you can get them here. Get in quick because our inaugural Broadway production is going to be a big deal!
Like this article? You might like Food For the Soul: Gold Coast Dining & Culture.
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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
Destination Gold Coast acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region.
We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout Southeast Queensland.