The Wharf Revue is back for another year of biting satire and this year’s instalment is called Whoops!

The annual Sydney Theatre Company tradition is now in its 13th year, with writers Jonathan Biggins, Drew Forsythe and Phillip Scott at the helm. Joining Biggins and Forsythe onstage are newbies Amanda Bishop, Simon Burke and Andrew Worboys. The ensemble brings an excellent standard of impersonation, song and dance to a sharply executed set of comedic sketches.

 

With everyone covered from Rudd to Abbott, and Tom Waterhouse to Gina Rinehart, the cast doesn’t leave an area unscathed. Julian Assange, Marieke Hardy and the ABC are even brought to the grind. The revue offers some fantastic song and dance routines and various piss-takes on everything from the Australian Workers Union’s The Abbott Family to The Wizard Of Oz as an allegory for the Labor party. With such a diverse program of sketch, the varied abilities of the cast are put to the test; Biggins shreds the guitar like he’s has a rock star past, Burke fleshes out his music theatre roots and Worboys’ musical direction riffs on Les Mis to Titanic. Reprising her famous Julia Gillard role, Bishop steals the show while also displaying some strong operatic pipes and the sharpest comedic timing.

 

After a year of political strangling and global blunders, the revue’s title needs no explanation. Additional effort has also gone into visuals, with premade video sketches and introductions working well as a backdrop to the main action.

 

4/5 stars

 

BY JULIAN RAMUNDI

 

Whoops! is currently presenting at Sydney Theatre Company until December 21.

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