Renowned writer, director and choreographer Kurt Phelan will star in Backyard Stories, a cabaret show that forms part of the Whitsundays Arts Festival. Picture: Supplied
Renowned writer, director and choreographer Kurt Phelan will star in Backyard Stories, a cabaret show that forms part of the Whitsundays Arts Festival. Picture: Supplied

Tales of North Queensland childhood land centre stage

KNEE scrapes, afternoons lounging poolside and the unshakeable humidity of summer are all synonymous with a North Queensland childhood.

These shared experiences and more will be explored in a unique cabaret performance in Airlie Beach as part of the Whitsundays Arts Festival.

Backyard Stories has been crafted by award-winning producer Joel Bow and explores the trials and tribulations of growing up in the North.

The show features Mr Bow's best friend Kurt Phelan, a prestigious writer, director and choreographer who is typically based in New York.

The pandemic sent Mr Phelan back to Australia and the pair reunited.

It was then Backyard Stories was born as Mr Bow recognised the beauty in the simple stories from their time spent running around small-town Queensland.

 

The inaugural Whitsundays Arts Festival kicks off on Saturday with a packed three day calendar full of creativity. Picture: Supplied
The inaugural Whitsundays Arts Festival kicks off on Saturday with a packed three day calendar full of creativity. Picture: Supplied

"Kurt and I grew up in backyards in North Queensland and there's beautiful stories there of development and us growing up," he said.

Backyard Stories is based on the tales for Mr Phelan's childhood in what Mr Bow described as "stripped back" storytelling.

"It's basically beautiful songs sung in beautiful ways with a beautiful band and a cabaret sitting," he said.

"Backyard Stories is Kurt Phelan stripped back sharing stories from the dizzying highs of being one of Australia's in-demand leading gents, to the close but no cigar moment of almost landing a lead on Broadway, to marrying one hell of a top bloke and growing up in a North Queensland backyard."

The show forms part of the inaugural Whitsundays Arts Festival which kicks off on the Airlie Beach foreshore tomorrow.

More stories

Key to strong farming future lies in less human pickers

Bowen mum of six gets jail for drug drive trifecta

VOTE NOW: The best hairdresser in the Whitsundays

The three-day festival is jam packed with workshops, performances and installations with Backyard Stories rounding out the program on Monday evening.

Mr Bow said the cabaret show would provide a taste of something different in Airlie Beach in the relaxed setting of Paradiso.

"It's really nice, it's intimate," he said.

"It's very conversational and very casual, the artist is leading the audience through a journey of different songs and different stories that meld together."

The show runs from 2.30pm to 5pm on Monday October 5 at Paradiso.

Tickets for Backyard Stories can be purchased here. https://www.whitsundaysartsfestival.org/joel-bow-productions/cabaret-ticket


SHOOTING: Bowen man wounded after gun fired into home

Premium Content SHOOTING: Bowen man wounded after gun fired into home

Multiple triple-0 calls were made following a gunshot just after midnight.

Bowen officer does disease testing after alleged finger bite

Premium Content Bowen officer does disease testing after alleged finger bite

A woman has been charged with seriously assaulting police after allegedly biting an...

Concern over more people at airports without masks

Premium Content Concern over more people at airports without masks

‘Not only can you be fined $200 on the spot, it is a safety precaution for you and...