Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Former Queensland Premier visiting the Sunshine Coast.
Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Former Queensland Premier visiting the Sunshine Coast. Sunshine Coast Daily Archives - 21 June 1976

Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen's life to be made into musical

A MUSICAL about former Queensland premier Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen? I guess we had to have one.

I mean we've got a musical about State of Origin opening in June (Home Ground: The State of Origin Musical) and now we can reveal that it will be followed by Joh for PM.

Those who thought Sir Joh was a bit of a clown might deem it appropriate that he will be played by comedian and actor Colin Lane of Lano and Woodley fame.

Lane, who describes himself as "a professional show off", is a good actor so as far as his portrayal of Sir Joh goes, well, don't you worry about that!

This musical is a co-production between Cairns-based JUTE Theatre Company, Brisbane Powerhouse and the Queensland Music Festival and it will directed by Kris Stewart, artistic director of the Brisbane Powerhouse.

Stewart says it doesn't get much more Queensland than this.

"We don't get too many home grown productions in Queensland and I think this cheeky take on local and global politics will be a real hit. Queensland audiences are in for a treat," he says.

The script was written by Brisbane-based playwright Stephen Carleton with an original score by Broadway composer Paul Hodge, who was involved with Clinton: The Musical.

Hodge says audiences will be "jamming to songs like Pumpkin Scone Diplomacy, Feeding The Chooks and Joh for PM."

While it will be retro in many ways there will also be some contemporary digs at things such as the Trump presidential campaign and various Australian parliamentary expense scandals.

It sounds like a hoot and we just hope it's more successful than Sir Joh-Bjelke Petersen's disastrous campaign to become PM. Goodness gracious me, that didn't work, did it?

Joh for PM, July 7 - 15, Brisbane Powerhouse; brisbanepowerhouse.org

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