22 May 2015

Dancer taps into professional experience for Mary Poppins

 When former professional dancer Justin Tamblyn heard that the Disney classic, Mary Poppins was to be brought to life by the Empire Theatre, he couldn’t resist the opportunity to be involved.

Making his debut in an Empire Theatres major production, Justin has been cast in the lead role of Mary Poppin’s loveable friend and chimney sweep, Bert, a role known for its playful charm, and energetic presence on stage.

After dancing with Raw Dance Company immediately after graduating high school, Justin travelled and performed all over the country and overseas in everything from original dance productions, to a role as Patchy the Pirate in Spongebob Squarepants Live in the United Arab Emirates and musical theatre productions including Spring Awakening and Hot Shoe Shuffle.

Now living and working as a teacher in Warwick, Justin has enjoyed the experience of making ‘Bert’ his own.

“Bert is a song and dance man; he is so much fun,” he said.

“I have enjoyed thinking about Bert from a different perspective.”

“He gets some great dance numbers and some of the most well-known songs from the show.

“I thought he would a lot of fun to play because he is such a big kid, able to get away with being cheeky, playing tricks and looking for light-hearted moments, but there is a serious side to Bert as well.

“He is almost as magical as Mary and definitely plays an important role in getting the Banks family back on track.

Justin said the Empire Theatres production of Mary Poppins was completely unique from the set design, costuming and lighting through to the large cast.

“It really is a show that a whole family can enjoy, with enough depth in the characters that adults can appreciate their struggles and achievements but the music and dance numbers are just so catchy and uplifting bright and full of energy,” he said.

“This show deals with some heavy issues. This is a story of a broken family and all the things that go with that and we haven’t been afraid to push the more serious themes and issues, but don’t get me wrong, there is a great deal of cheerfulness, love and laughter!”

The Empire Theatres seven show season of Mary Poppins, proudly sponsored by Heritage Bank, opens on May 28 and runs until June 7.

For more information or to purchase tickets, contact the Box Office on 1300 655 299 or visit www.empiretheatre.com.au