Boomtown star George Cartwright, 13, on set at the Gladstone Marina.
Boomtown star George Cartwright, 13, on set at the Gladstone Marina. Luka Kauzlaric

Gladstone we have a boom! QMF musical a hit with audience

MOTHER Nature is alive and well in Gladstone.

She's riding around on a tug in the harbour.

At least, that's the way epic musical Boomtown sees it, and what hundreds of locals saw as the stage show premiered at the Gladstone Marina Park foreshore last night.

Mother Nature, played by Claire Munting, was a key figure with an operatic turn on the water.

Kicking off with the epic, We're Glad to Be in Gladstone, Boomtown tells the familiar story of a family moving to Gladstone to chase the boom.

Set in the 1960s, the Stones find themselves in a caravan park and, as mum reminds the kids, having to wear thongs in a shower block.

But young George, played by star of the show George Cartwright, isn't impressed at being uprooted "for the hundredth time".

A time-travelling tour of Gladstone is at hand, though, courtesy of Jumpin' Jack, a twang-sounding, akubra-wearing Jack Viljoen.

And plenty of character can help George acclimatise.

In a major-general-esque turn, Clyde Cameron dominates the huge outdoor stage as Colonel George Barney, while his ghostly galleon sails off the foreshore.

Pacy dialogue keeps the story rolling, as George meets the local kids, who delight with dancing, skipping and bmx tricks across levels of industrial junk.

Huge spotlights swing from the stage and across the water, while the evening breeze adds to the eerie atmosphere as indigenous performers hold the audience enthralled.

Starring 320 locals, plus tugboats, Taiko drummers, German bell ringers and even a horse, this production is truly epic.

While George's repeated complaint is "there's nothing here for me", Boomtown has something for everyone.

The biggest production ever staged for the Queensland Music Festival, Boomtown will again take to the stage tonight at 6.30pm, and on Saturday and Sunday.

Organisers recommend arriving early to get a carpark, and a good spot in front of the giant stage.

For full details visit http://www.qmf.org.au and follow links to Boomtown.

If you watched the opening night performance make sure you share what your favourite part of the production was by commenting below!



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