Local production to blitz the town

A MUSICAL that follows the life of an upcoming West End theatre star during the London Blitz will open at The Playhouse Theatre in February.

Blitz! A Sentimental Journey tells the story of Jo Arnold, played by Claire Dawson, who found her new stardom and life changed by World War II.

Director Rod Anderson, who has worked extensively as a professional theatre and television performer and director, said the show unveils the atrocities of the war and the resilience of the people who lived through it.

“The London Blitz was a horrific time and people did not know when it was going to end,” he said.

“Claire’s character Jo is an example of the tough spirit of Londoners who had to live their lives for months not knowing when the next bomb would hit.

“Jo represents those people who were born in the roaring 20s and went to live on through the Great Depression and World War II.

“Performers during that era would keep acting or singing until the air raids went off and would then keep going if the audience did not want to leave to bomb shelters – it took ‘the show must go on’ to a whole other level.”

Blitz! includes popular songs and music from the 1930s and 1940s.

Mr Anderson said some of the best music in history was written during the war period.

“Some of the most popular and incredible melodies of our time came from people who lived through the war – people say this is because it was such an extreme time and emotions were more heightened than ever,” he said.

“Claire sings these songs beautifully as she has one of those old, well-rounded and incredible tones.

“Her character is slightly wacky and hilarious. She goes on to learn about falling in love and understanding herself and her career, while reminiscing about the extreme times in which she lived.

“During our preview shows there were no dry eyes in the house because she was so moving.

“I am really feeling confident about the opening of Blitz! and I am sure that the people of Hobart will enjoy it.”

Blitz! A Sentimental Journey is presented by the Hobart Repertory Theatre Society and is a Claire Dawson Production, supported by Tasmania Performs and written by Claire Dawson and Rod Anderson.

Blitz! opens on Friday 14 February and runs until Saturday 22 February at the Playhouse Theatre in Bathurst Street.

For more information and bookings go to www.centertainment.com.au or call 6234 5998.

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