Directed by Simon Phillips, Divas is a captivating journey through time, exploring the (often quite short) lives of the biggest music stars to ever grace stage and screen. There are ten, in fact, each with their own unique personality, connection to music, and outlook on life and love. Unbelievably, there is one star who brings them all to life in one show. That star is Bernadette Robinson.
Bernadette Robinson is a vocal powerhouse who not only embodies the performing artists on stage, but also replicates their personality, physical attributes, and speech patterns seamlessly, from one superstar diva to the next. The carefully curated list, which includes Kate Bush, Karen Carpenter, Dolly Parton, Amy Winehouse, and Judy Garland, showcases a breadth of talent, brought to life in a 100-minute performance by Robinson.
Divas is well-paced and engaging from start to finish. You would be hard-pressed not to sing along or dance in your seats, especially when Robinson belts ‘Diamonds are Forever’ by Shirley Bassey, and even a modern ‘Wrecking Ball’ by Miley Cyrus. There were moments when it was hard to believe that the voice even belonged to Robinson as she literally became the diva. And so impressively shifts from one star to another without as much as a lighting change.
The 3-piece band accompanying Robinson is also incredible, not only providing the musical component but also adding in their own vocal contributions. They are Mark Jones (on the Piano/Keyboards), Jonathan Skovron (Guitars/Bass/Keyboards) and Graham Hunt (Drums). Each brilliant and talented, supporting Robinson to shine on stage. Never overpowering or taking the focus away from these brilliant women, their lives, and their music.
Divas is a phenomenal intimate show, and a performance worth seeing. Divas, and Bernadette Robinson herself, leave a legacy and history of women on the stage while simultaneously carving out her own diva in the present.
FOUR AND A HALF STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
Divas is now playing at the Playhouse in the Sydney Opera House through to the 20th August 2023. For more information and to purchase tickets, click HERE
Reviewer attended on Friday August 4th, 2023.