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Athenaeum Theatre

  • Theatre
  • Melbourne
Athenaeum Theatre

Time Out says

One of the oldest institutions in Victoria, the Athenaeum opened in 1839 under many guises. It's housed an art gallery, museum, cinema, theatre and is now home to the Last Laugh Comedy Club and Melbourne Opera.

Comedy every Friday and Saturday night at 7pm:
The Last Laugh - With almost four decades of laughter behind it, the Last Laugh is inarguably the city's most famous comedy club. It’s played host to a veritable who’s-who of international comedy, not to mention providing a training ground for generations of locals. There are dinner-and-who packages available for those planning on making a night of it.


188 Collins St

What’s on

Cruel Intentions: the '90s Musical

  • Musicals

The year 1999 was a big one for movies. The Sixth Sense, Toy Story 2 and The Matrix all came out that year, along with the appalling first Star Wars prequel. But there was one movie that excited the hearts and, er, well... of teenagers that year: sexy thriller Cruel Intentions. Based on the 1782 French novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses (which was also the basis for 1988's Dangerous Liaisons), Cruel Intentions had an all-star, all-'90s cast in Ryan Phillippe, Reese Witherspoon, Selma Blair and Sarah Michelle Gellar, at the height of her Buffy powers.  And now, the brand new Aussie cast for the hotly anticipated Australian premiere production of the musical will take the stage. Local talent Kirby Burgess, Drew Weston and Kelsey Halge will join Helpmann Award-nominated performer Francine Cain for a fun night out you won't want to miss. The film's music was the soundtrack to the summer, featuring '90s artists like Counting Crows, Fatboy Slim, Marcy Playground, the Verve and Blur. So, in 2015, Lindsey Rosin, Jordan Ross and the film's writer and director, Roger Kumble, turned the story into a jukebox musical, leaning hard into '90s nostalgia (like, really hard. The musical's subtitle is 'the '90s musical'). The songs in the musical are even more emblematic of the decade than the film's soundtrack was. The setlist: 'Bye Bye Bye' (NSYNC), 'Sometimes' (Britney Spears), 'Just A Girl' (No Doubt), 'Foolish Games' (Jewel), 'Genie In A Bottle' (Christina Aguilera), 'Breakfast At Tiffany’s'


Calling all talking donkeys and fairytale creatures. Get ready to peel back the layers at a reimagining of Shrek that is sure to flood your swamp make you a believer, hallelujah! (Just don’t think too hard about the logistics of a donkey-dragon romance yielding offspring.) After sold-out runs across Australia since debuting in 2020, the All-Star smash hit Shreklesque is touring again, and you’ll be green with envy if you don’t swipe yourself a ticket for the ogerly anticipated shows at Mebourne's Athenaeum Theatre from June 29 to July 2. Created by and starring boylesque maverick Trigger Happy, Shreklesque is an award-winning show that puts the mean, green love machine on the pedestal he deserves, offering its audience a smorgasbord of performance styles including burlesque, drag and musical theatre. Audiences will be treated to a night of frivolity, stunning costumes and performances that will leave them in a fit of hysterics and confusing urges.  If you like the idea of witnessing a strip tease that leaves you exclaiming “Not the gumdrop buttons!” – this is certainly the show for you. Tickets are selling fast. Don’t give a damn about your bad reputation, grab your tickets here and prepare yourself to be whisked far, far away on an evening or erotic green madness. And in the morning, I’m making waffles.  Wanna see something else? Check out the best shows to see in Sydney this May.

Ghost Stories

  • Drama

Spooky things are happening on stage. The lighting is dim, and you peer through the gloom. There at the back, is that... alive? Did it used to be? Then the lights go out, and the theatre is plunged into darkness. But it's only a play, isn't it? Nothing can get you while you're safe in your seat, right? Right? This is Ghost Stories, a British horror-themed play written by Jeremy Dyson (The League of Gentlemen) and Andy Nyman (Derren Brown TV and live shows, Peaky Blinders) that has played in London for many years, including in the West End.  The producers are keeping their spooky surprises a secret, but there will be scares aplenty during the five-week season of Ghost Stories at the Athenaeum. This is the first time the West End version has come to Australia, though other iterations of the show have visited our shores in the past. “You haven’t experienced horror until you’ve seen it live on stage,” says Nathan Alexander, producer at Realscape Productions, which is presenting the Australian version. “The show is thrilling, chilling and we couldn’t be more excited for Australia to experience the rollercoaster that is Ghost Stories.”  Will there be jump scares? Based on the trailer on the website, almost certainly. Will there be creeps, crawls and general bumps in the night? Most definitely. The show comes with a warning label that it's not for the faint of heart or those with nerve conditions. Fearless Melburnians can see Ghost Stories from October 5 to November 13 at the Athena

Friends! The Musical Parody

  • Musicals

One thing is certain: it hasn't been anyone's day, week, month or year. But things are looking up with the hotly anticipated Friends! The Musical Parody finally set to hit Melbourne in 2022.  This production is of course based off Friends, one of the world's most popular sitcoms. The comedic stage musical has proved just as popular, playing for almost a year in New York before touring the US. After being delayed a number of times due to the events of 2020-2021, the show is finally coming to Melbourne from November 23, bringing all your favourite twenty-somethings to the stage as they negotiate life, love and work in 1990s New York. The musical was penned by Bob and Tobly McSmith, who have a long track record of lovingly spoofing '90s TV shows, recreating TV's most memorable moments and creating soundtracks that bring something new to the stories we already know and love. The Australian production is directed by Dash Kruck with choreography by Cameron Mitchell, set and costume design by Frances Hannaway, lighting by Jason Glenwright and musical direction by Steven Kreamer. And it goes without saying, but this is an unauthorised parody.  Tickets for the Friends! The Musical Parody Melbourne season are on sale now.

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