By Prerna Priyanka
International musical theatre star Matt Young, known for his versatile performances on stage and screen, brings his one-man cabaret show, CIRCUS CARNIVAL CABARET, to the Fiji Fringe Festival in March.
An evening of musical comedy and storytelling, the show tells the fascinating tale of family circus in the Australian outback town of Blackall, where Matt currently lives.
The musical journey revolves around Mary Ellen Atkins, a local girl who ran away to join the circus in the late 1800s at the age of 12.
As a trapeze artist and contortionist, Mary Ellen became an integral part of the Perry Brothers Circus, managing its affairs for 58 years.
Matt Young, in the role of Ringmaster, intertwines her compelling story with his own, reflecting on his journey from Broadway to the outback.
Matt told Fiji Traveller how the show came about.
“After my father-in-law died in 2021, my husband asked me if I would consider moving to Blackall, Queensland, where he was born.
“As Blackall is the ‘home of family circus in Australia,’ the town was having a circus carnival to celebrate, and I was commissioned to write and perform a show,” he explained.
Songs from Broadway and beyond, including Peter Allan’s “Don’t Cry Out Loud” and Disney’s “Baby Mine” feature in the production.
The show promises Hugh Jackman-style showmanship, peppered with hilarious poems, stories, and songs, all delivered with the flair of a seasoned Broadway performer.
Matt is excited and grateful to be performing in Suva: “I reached out to festival director Sharleen Ali, and as she is a very professional producer, she took the opportunity to ask me if I had anything ready to perform in the Fringe. It was perfect synchronicity.”
With a passion for nurturing talent, Matt, who founded the Tukuna Acting Club in Fiji, continues to create theatrical opportunities in Outback Queensland.
He encourages aspiring performers to receive formal training, surround themselves with supportive communities, and take risks to share their unique stories.
As Matt Young takes the stage at the Fiji Fringe Festival, audiences can expect an unforgettable evening filled with laughter, music, and the enchanting tales of the circus.
CIRCUS CARNIVAL CABARET will be live on March 17 at the Fiji Fringe Festival.
Tickets are available at https://www.ticketmax.com.fj/Fringe
More about Matt Young
Matt Young, a well-known stage and screen actor, has graced Broadway productions such as A Chorus Line, West Side Story, and On the Town.
In Australia, he was part of the original cast of Mel Brooks’ The Producers, the 2012 revival cast of Annie, and various Queensland productions.
His film and TV credits include Hallmark’s A Summer To Remember and Pearl in Paradise, Gayby Baby, Wrecked, and upcoming features like Heart of the Man and Zombie Plane.