Image for Trevor Ashley Stuns As Bassey In Opera House Performance

Trevor Ashley Stuns As BasseyIn Opera House Performance

There aren’t many Australian performers who could convince a packed-out audience at the Sydney Opera House concert hall to give five standing ovations. But Trevor Ashley is one of them, delivering a stellar performance in his one-night-only Diamonds Are For Trevor show last night as part of the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras.

Transforming into 80-year-old music icon Shirley Bassey, Ashley held the diverse audience (which ranged from 19-year-old twinks to 95-year-old theatre grans) in the palm of his hand for close to three hours of unrelenting glitter and glam; delivering hit-after-hit including History Repeating, Big Spender, and a surprise duet performance of Working Class Man with Jimmy Barnes.

Backed by a wonderful 24-piece orchestra, the performances were high-energy and exhilarating to watch, beaten only by Ashley’s razor-sharp tongue, wit and intuitive comedic timing.

Someone asked me recently if I’d heard of Tina Arena, Ashley mused to the audience. I said ‘no, how many does it seat?’

Ashley promptly silenced the laughing crowd by belting out a rendition of Arena’s Chains. Far from a one-trick-pony, Ashley went on to bring the concert hall to complete silence once more, delivering a stirring monologue on the death of Bassey’s daughter before belting out an emotive ballad in her honour.

However, what made the night most memorable was witnessing a dream come true for one of Australia’s most underrated, hardest working performers. As the night came to a close (after the fourth encore), Ashley removed his wig and makeup – clearly overcome by the enormity of what he’d just achieved.

I know for some of you, the party is only just starting tonight. But for me, this was my big party, he said, clearly moved.

There’s no denying it. Ashley is one of a kind – and he’s not going anywhere (except, perhaps, to a larger venue).

Photos by John McCrae.

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Searay 73

Searay 73 said on the 3rd

The best show I have ever seen with comedy and a huge voice that belts out those amazing notes. excellent forget 5 star rating 100 out 100 xx

TheOldie

TheOldie said on the 9th

Googled and watch a few vids...............sounds like Shirley who I saw at the Entertainment Centre once