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Mice Net : December 2008
Event Entertainer of the Year – winner Music Theatre Australia – Tania de Jong – Pot-Pourri APIA Joint Technical Meeting Dinner & Opera in the Otways Since its inception in Australian opera, musical theatre and comedy sensation Pot-Pourri have entertained hundreds of thousands both within Australia and internationally and has released six CD’s and completed more than 40 overseas tours. The Australian Pipeline Industry Association (APIA) holds regular Joint Technical Meetings to keep members up-to-date with technical and scientific developments both in Australia and around the world. Following their performance at the 2002 APIA Annual Convention for 700 guests, Pot-Pourri were invited to provide entertainment for this exclusive international dinner held as part of the 2007 Joint Technical Meeting on April 17, 2007. The international scope of this event, coupled with the specialised nature of the industry, led to some challenges relating to the customisation that Pot-Pourri were asked to undertake. In the course of discussions with the client, it was determined the primary objectives were as follows: • To be accessible to both local and international attendees • To work within a corporate dinner setting to engage and entertain the audience • To present a relevant and topical performance After researching the organisation, recent developments in the industry and prominent figures at the meeting, members of the group customised their lyrics and performance script to include references to the industry. Songs were both chosen and created to reflect on key achievements of the industry and conference, incorporate a vision for the future of the industry and to include information, jokes and references chosen in consultation with the client. APIA delegates were not the only ones to be wowed by the talents of Pot-Pourri. The inaugural ‘Gumboots and Pearls’ Opera in the Otways was held by the Otway Scenic Circle Association on October 13, 2007. Hoping to bring a high-class musical experience to the community of Colac/Otway Shire, the Association invited Pot- Pourri to perform a customised ‘classy Australiana’ feature show. In consultation with the organisers of the event, a number of outcomes were determined to be of particular importance for the performers including: • To be a part of a high-class musical event accessible to the community, visitors from Melbourne and surrounding regions • To produce a show that fit the theme of the event • To launch the event with the intention that it become an annual fixture in the local calendar and the Victorian event scene • To overcome the obstacles associated with outdoor events The members of Pot-Pourri attacked the challenge of making a high-class musical event accessible to the community with gusto, incorporating musical theatre classics, including hits from Westside Story, Cats, The Phantom of the Opera and more, musical comedy and audience interaction to ensure that the audience was engaged in an effective and enjoyable way. The many guises of Music Theatre Australia. mice.net 49