Love Token's Oz Diary

NEW! Photos are here!!

Stardate July 30, 2003

Just before heading to the airport, I was watching the Highlander film on the AMC channel. Quantas aired commercials for the show and interviews with Ben, Brian and Roger en route...sort of a warm up for the real thing I guess.

The Bushfire Blonde rang and reminded me that the 1st public preview was last night, so, I dragged my sleepless in Melbourne self across the street to see if a ticket remained....low and behold...dead center stalls just a few rows behind our own band of boys....Roger, Ben, and Brian. Groopie I watch the show, do I watch the boys, do I watch the boys watching the show? Somehow I managed to do a bit of all three.

The show was amazing and I can only expect it to get better and better in the weeks and months to come as the show goes on. While the entire cast was fabulous, stand out performances for me on this first night were Amanda Harrison as Oz and Annie Crummer as Killer Queen with both turning in unforgettable performances. Amanda's extensive experience and the confidence that comes with that experience are definitely apparent on stage. She doesn't have to act. On stage she simply is Oz. And Annie simply has a special quality about her, somewhat Tina Turner meets Eartha Kitt meets Patti LaBelle. Simply outstanding! What a fabulous Killer Queen wardrobe! I want to BE Killer Queen!

It was fun watching the boys enjoy the show, applauding, smiling and Brian punching the air with his fist and on his feet for an early ovation. Yes, by nights end, there was a full house ovation, but not before the Radio Ga Ga/We Will Rock You hand clapping and We Are the Champions arm waving, with lighters and glow sticks in the air.....the show went over quite well, to say the very least.....!

Thursday Afternoon, August 1, 2003

The lovely Bushfire Blonde arrived today. Dear that she is, within minutes of arriving in Melbourne, arranged to meet with some of those involved with the show. So, an hour later there we were having tea with Michael Falzon aka Gazza Fizza, James Barber who plays 1st guitar, Simon Croft on 2nd guitar, and John Rutledge, keyboards and assistant MD. How cool is that?! All lovely boyz and ever so friendly and chatty. All seem to be enjoying the excitement and build up to the opening day. When telling us about a promotional appearance that he made the day before, Michael showed off his We Will Rock You scarf, and I knew I had to have one! Michael! Oh dear....what a darling man. Makes this little groopie girl go ga ga! Sigh! I'd type more but after getting a little hug and kiss I am left speechless! I think it's love. Shhh....don't tell Brian.

John, James, and Michael photo by the Bushfire Blonde

Later that day....The Bushfire Blonde and I met up with James and Simon again after their rehearsals. Those of you who know me know that I am a total guitar player groopie, so this day was like heaven. I know nothing about the technical side of guitar playing but it was fascinating to listen to them talk about what it was like to work with Brian at rehearsals and learn all the fine details of how each chord "should" be played.

As we were having coffee, Annie Crummer aka Killer Queen dropped in for a hug. Is she gorgeous or what?! And she said I was too. (I hope she tells Brian that!) While looking at 'pos-ters' and such in the box office area that afternoon with the boyz, who should we see walking thru the lobby? The darling Kate Hoolihan, aka Scaramouche/The Chick, who blew kisses. We also saw none other than Rrrrroger Taylor, the man himself. Sigh! We all know my heart belongs to Brian, but, man, Roger sure is looking fit and yummy these days!

Again, the show was fantastic. Even better than the first time I saw it....especially the band! Brian couldn't have hired better guitar players to play his riffs! These fellas are and will stay true to the good doctor's sound! Later we all went back to James' place for drinks. And while James was disrobing...

Simon, Love Token and James

Simon, Bushfire Blonde and James - photos courtesy of James Barber

August 3, 2003

The last couple of days have been nothing but a wonderful blur of activity. Far too much to write about so I'll only include some of the 'printable' highlights, excluding the Bushfire Blonde's more embarrassing moments.

JenX and HeFTy finally arrived. Yay! I managed to see the show two more times. One evening I walked into the theatre with Brian and walked out with Roger and Ben. This groopie has arrived! It's been a real treat to see the show like this as it evolves. Thus far, I've seen a number of new jokes added, lines rewritten, chords and tempos changed, and songs omitted then added back. It is certainly keeping the whole cast, band and crew on their toes. But, I must say, the show is consistently excellent! I can't imagine anyone else playing the role of Gazza better than Michael does. In this role, he will remind you of a young and awkward James Dean, but much better looking. The beautiful Kate is just fantastic as the school girlish Scaramouche. She nails "Somebody to Love" every night. And I have a very soft spot for Ross Girven who plays Commander Kashoggi. What a lovely lovely man!! I would never in a million years send him to the Seven Seas of Rhye.

Another highlight was when HeFTy ruined my complicated decade long relationship with Roger, but in a very good way. Of course, things have not always gone so perfectly. This groopie almost ruined the entire show. Oh no! Let me explain. Somehow both of the stars of the show, Michael and Kate, managed to trip over my feet one evening. And my feet are not even that big. Darling Kate graciously apologized to me, when it should have been the other way around. And fortunately Michael's 'muscle memory' kicked in and he made a graceful recovery. Thank God! we all know, the show must go on......

August 10, 2003

"Miss Hawaii" as some of the cast, etc. have come to know me, is back home in Hawaii. Still trying to come down from a fabulous rock and roll high! I was far too busy having a wonderful time that unfortunately I have not been able to send regular diary updates.

What have I done in the past week? What haven't I done? Well, I have not seen much of Australia, but that's OK as I have seen and experienced more than my share of what the Aussie We Will Rock You Theatrical has to offer! And for that I am grateful. I saw the show an embarrassing 9 of the 12 times it was on while I was in Melbourne. No, I'm not independently wealthy, but, thanks to a few special friends for making it possible, you know who you are.

I must say that of the 9 times that I saw the show, the premiere night was by far the best! And all of the reviews have been excellent! (To heck with the idiot London critics!) We couldn't have had better seats. (Thank you, you know who!) The cast, band and crew must have had quite a pep talk before the show as everything went perfectly. I mean EVERYTHING! I felt so proud of them! I had the pleasure of sitting with a relative of one of the cast members. Seeing the enormous smile on his face as he watched the show brought joy to my heart. It was a full star studded red carpet affair. Our crew dressed in black tie, and it was a sight to see them all doing their best air guitar on the red carpet for national television. Fortunately for me, not being Australian, I didn't really know any of celebrities in attendance, so I didn't feel star struck, except for seeing Brian, Roger, the lovely cast and band. The after-show party was something else! I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

"The hairy one is back!"

"What the hell is a tambourine man?"

My gang left the party somewhere around 1:30 and 2 am. Perhaps I should have stayed on a bit longer. Around then, there was a handsome young man trying to flirt with me. For all I know, he could have been the lead singer of Australia's top selling boy band. Just as well, according to WWRY I'm not supposed to like boy bands anyway.

The premiere party wasn't the end of the road of my Aussie experiences. I had the good fortune of meeting and spending some time with Mr. Greg Fryer the day after the premiere. He was Brian's honorary guitar tech at the premiere party. I loved hearing his stories and how he came to build guitars, etc. You know me with my weird guitar groopie fetish.

As for Brian. What can I say? I had a couple of lovely conversation with the good doctor and he is as kind, darling, and humble as ever. This groopie can have a tendency towards being a quiet introvert. I often try to blend into background, especially when I had no official business being there as I didn't want to be in anyone's way. But each time I was around Brian, he always came up to me and spoke to me first, making me feel incredibly welcome as though I really did belong there. How can I not continue to be a faithful maniac and groopie for this lovely man? Brian, I can't thank you enough! I feel incredibly privileged to have been a part of it all. I must also thank Michael, Ross and James B. for their warm and welcoming ways as well. These three always did the same thing.

Sadly, reality hit when I was flying home on Quantas and they showed those commercials for We Will Rock You in Melbourne again. I was still wearing my We Will Rock You scarf around my neck and had the urge to take it off and start "waving that banner all over the place"....but, as meaningful as it was for me the day before, it would have just been silly to do so now that I am back in the real world. Sad isn't it?

As for HeFTy, The Bushfire Blonde and JenX..... what else can I say? I miss you already! Shall I see y'all in Madrid?! Vamos!

Attention: Queen Theatrical Productions

HeFTy and I already auditioned with the lines "Commander Kashoggi!!" "You screamed for me Madame?" for Annie and Ross. We will see you at the next open auditions.)

For more information, photos, press, reviews, etc. please visit Brian's homepage and the WWRY Oz section there!

NEW! Photos are here!!

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