Dawn Beaumont-Stevens’ long musical career, and remarkable life, is being celebrated with a biographical musical to be performed in Griffith - where she is a singer, music teacher, and community leader.
A group of Dawn Beaumont-Stevens’ current and past students are well into rehearsals for a show about Dawn’s life, written by Mark, Shari, and Clare Blumer (all former students of Dawn). The 25 strong cast ranges in age from 8 to 80.
“Dawn is a champion of the bush. This show is very much about Dawn, but it’s also about those pioneering women who came from the cities and the coast to live in a very harsh place and managed to soften and civilise their environment by championing music and art,” said Mark Blumer who is directing the show. “And most of all, they provided entertainment.”
“My grandmother Nancy Blumer was another of those women, like Dawn, whose strength and courage I respect. That’s why I personally wanted to make this show with the help of my daughters Shari and Clare.”
The show will be held at the Griffith Regional Theatre, the location of many popular community shows Dawn musically directed or contributed to, like Griffith Remembers and Ten: The Show.
The musical dramatises her remarkable life, beginning as a child who contracted polio at 3-years-old, and showing her successful singing career in her late teens and early twenties in Sydney and as a protégé of singing star Gladys Moncrieff.
“We interviewed people in Dawn’s life and found out what her story really is,” said Blumer.
“We’ve found press clippings, written records, photographs, radio recordings and scripts from the 1950s. All of this added up to a unique but also a representative story of pioneering women of the twentieth century.
The musical contains many of the popular songs that Dawn’s students performed all around Griffith, including some of the classic hits that made Griffith Remembers memorable, and featuring a song written especially for this show by Steven Bailey.
“It’s great to have some of Dawn’s star students gathering in Griffith to honour Dawn with this show.”
Directed by Mark Blumer (Griffith Remembers, Ten the Show, K-Tel Killers Kocktail Kabaret), musically directed by Steven Bailey (who directed Griffith: The Musical), produced by Margie Couch (Hermit, My Place), and assisted in direction and design by Don Hillam (Beauty and the Beast and many others), the team has had vast experience in creating community shows in Griffith.