We’re devastated the iconic Ekka was cancelled for the second year in a row due to COVID-19. As The Ekka is a rite of passage for the children of Queensland, we’re grabbing the commiseration candy and bringing back our childhoods with ‘The People’s Day Playlist’.
This confection of favourite childhood songs has been handpicked by stars of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Stephen Anderson (Willy Wonka) and Lucy Maunder (Mrs Bucket), who were slated to perform at The Ekka in the Main Arena on People’s Day. Get your ears around it, and read what they had to say about each song:
Pure Imagination – Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971), Gene Wilder
I wore out a VHS of the original 1971 film when I was a kid. Gene Wilder’s performance – and this song – are an indelible part of my childhood.
The Candyman – The Mike Curb Congregation
The grooviest 1970s version of this standard around. So catchy!
I’ll Be Seeing You – Billie Holiday
One of my favourite songs by one of my favourite artists – and even more poignant in the times we’re living though.
When I Grow Up – Matilda the Musical, Original Cast
Lucy and I first worked together in the Australian production of Matilda the Musical. This adaptation of Roald Dahl’s novel features the outstanding music and lyrics of Tim Minchin.
Zadok the Priest – George Frideric Handel
Listen to it properly, then watch “Zadok Shreds” on YouTube. It’s an hilarious dubbed version of Handel’s piece that leaves Lucy and I literally wheezing with laughter in the dressing room.
Caravan – The John Buzon Trio
Lounge at its best.
Life on Mars? – David Bowie
My favourite Bowie song – the melody and the lyrics are perfect and always surprising.
Sukiyaki – Kyu Sakamoto
First released in Japan in 1961, the song topped the U.S. Billboard charts in 1963. The song became one of the best-selling singles of all time, selling over 13 million copies worldwide. It was a favourite of my grandmother’s – and recently featured in the Closing Ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics.
We Go Together – Grease, Australian Cast
My partner Jared and I met doing the last Australasian tour of Grease, it’s very special that we are back together on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!
My House – Matilda the Musical, Original Cast
I was pregnant when I was supposed to start the QPAC season of Matilda as Miss Honey. I ended up joining in Perth six weeks after my daughter was born but would sing this song all through my pregnancy. Also, Stephen and I worked together for the first time on Matilda so it holds a special place in my heart.
What I Did for Love – A Chorus Line, Natalie Cortez
This was the first song I ever sang at a Musical Theatre camp when I was 12. I had never really entertained the idea of singing before and it ignited my love for it.
Mister Clicketty Cane – Peter Combe
This is my childhood in a song - so nostalgic! I watched the Peter Combe video until it broke.
Finale (Don’t Feed the Plants) – Little Shop of Horrors, 1982 Original Cast
My dad introduced me to the CD of the original Broadway cast of Little Shop of Horrors when I was about seven. This song was always my favourite.
What’s Love Got to Do with It – Tina Turner
A classic. My daughter’s favourite song at the moment. She has it on repeat and will belt it out at the top of her lungs.
Part of Your World – The Little Mermaid (1989), Jodi Benson
This was my audition song for WAAPA (Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts) much to the amusement of my classmates. Alan Menken is one of my favourite composers, it’s a great song!
We pay our respects to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ancestors of this land, their spirits and their legacy. The foundations laid by these ancestors – our First Nations Peoples – gives strength, inspiration and courage to current and future generations, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, towards creating a better Queensland.