Audrey Hepburn, Travellers in Time and All Things Kelly Cupo

Back in 2015, Kelly Cupo played the girl from suburban Melbourne who couldn’t keep Audrey Hepburn out of her therapy sessions in the original Aussie musical ‘Audrey Hepburn and I Consider Our Assets.’  Well, Kelly is back in the studio, dressed all in pink with writer/director Noel Anderson, to record the lead duet from the show ‘Travellers in Time.’  Harlequin Ink caught up with Kelly to talk about screen legend Audrey Hepburn and of course, everything Kelly Cupo.

Kelly Cupo in the studio with director Noel Anderson


Audrey Hepburn And I Consider Our Assets
Q: You played the lead role in the original production in Melbourne. What three words best describe  your role in Audrey Hepburn and I Consider Our Assets?
Kelly: Vulnerability, Honesty, Pink!
Q: What do you love most about this musical?
Kelly: Oh, it feels like half of my life up on stage!! Ha!! I instantly fell in love with Liz and the script when I first read it. I LOVE the fact that this is an Aussie musical based around a 30-something Melbourne woman’s journey to self-acceptance. I can relate! And Audrey…. Oh beautiful Audrey!
Q: Who would you love to have seen in the audience of the original production at the Melba Spiegeltent?

The musical with the Hollywood twist

Kelly: My beautiful friend Brooke who believed in the power of pink more than anyone I have ever known.
Q: What do you like to do after a performance or a show?
Kelly: Sleep!! hehe…. I do love savouring the moment with fellow cast members and the magical people who bring a show to life, either in the dressing room or the closest bar!
Q: What was your first time on a stage?
Kelly: I remember being front and centre at a dance concert rehearsing to ‘Shake a tail feather’ for a primary school performance… and the morning of the big day I woke up with chicken pox! I was devastated I couldn’t attend!!! I was five!
Q: Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Kelly: I like to start the day with a big walk to help shake out any nerves and then try and do as little as possible to be honest!! I really like to spend the day on my own.
Q: What’s your favourite colour and why?
Kelly: Pink! Believe it or not… All shades of pink… Bright pink, dusty pink, fluro pink! I actually find its a bit of a conversation starter and it’s my happy colour!
Q: Leading man? Who would you most like to play opposite in a romantic musical?
Kelly: Luke Arnold, he was mesmerizing as Michael Hutchence in the INXS TV series and I have been following his career since.
Q: Martini’s love or loathe?
Kelly: I don’t think I have ever had one!! I’m more of a bubbles kind of girl….!
Q: Do you read reviews?
Kelly: I have in the past but I always get a friend to read it first! I do read the Australian Arts Review to see what everyone else is up too. 
Q: What is your best Asset?
Kelly: My heart. I wear it on my sleeve but it always knows best!

Checkout the teaser for ‘Travellers in Time’ featuring Kelly Cupo and Caroline Hawke. A music video of the song is set for release in May 2017 featuring Lee McClenaghan as Audrey  – Written & Directed by Noel Anderson – Cinematography by Rob Shedden – Music by Geoff Main – Lyrics by Cerise de Gelder

 

 

 

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Sexting It Up On TV’s Next 2 

‘64,000 downloads internationally and Season 1 premiering on FOXTEL 7pm 27/28th March, Aurora – make no mistake NEXT the dating series is on the way up.

  • These pics are memories of the shoot.  I don’t record things or keep a personal diary. I never have. Recently a mate gave me a diary for Christmas, what should I write I thought? Inside was a post-it note that said ‘Let 2017 inspire you’. I stuck it up in my bedroom. That post-it note was the best present I got last year because the message inspires me to do better, to change and grow.
  • What I’ve got to say about love and relationships is etched into my work. You want to know more about me then watch something I’ve directed or read a piece I’ve written’ – Next 2 director Noel Anderson
  • Tell me when it kicks in – ‘I see a director’s role as the bloke that puts a spin on things and strengthens the project. He’s a cross between a therapist and and magician. NEXT 2 was a perfect vehicle for me and producer/actor Rob Lobosco to work on together. I know you’ll love it’ – hugs Noel x

    Lee McClenaghan and crew at Kindred Studios in Melbourne

  • Rob called me and asked me to make NEXT 2 sexier than the first season. I remember laughing because I had exactly the same idea for it. More sex, comedy and more personal drama. This picture is of Lee McClenaghan who plays Penny and some of the crew at Kindred Studios. We are preparing to shoot one of many white scenes in the series.
  • Everybody loves happy endings – Kane Stewart and Melissa Bear as Patrick and Kelly

  • ‘Everyone loves a good bloody Aussie wedding, it’s like a BBQ. Think of Charlene and Scott’s wedding on Neighbours,  over 20 million viewers tuned in to watch it. Well, I was channelling my very best Charlene the day I directed the wedding scenes. Enjoy all the white’ – Director Noel Anderson
  • Director and cast cop out on set of Next 2

  • 64,000 downloads internationally including China, Canada, UK and America and premiering on FOXTEL on 27/28th March… season 1 of NEXT the dating series is on the way up…Picture features Rob Lobosco as Tobias, director Noel Anderson and actress Stephanie Schrieber as Sergeant Goldie.

When Britney met Tobias

Kirsty Snowden plays lovable American cafe owner Britney in the series. Britney is a hard boiled self made woman who has perfected the art of sexting  and men. She uses her age and experience with poise and determination to get exactly what she wants. ‘There’s a lot of woman like Britney out there’ director Anderson added. ‘Self contained woman with a strong sense of self respect but no husband. Online dating fills a void and gives them an occasional thrill.’

  • An interesting storyline in Next 2 is Eve (Sandra Casa) a straight character who is sexually unfulfilled, so she experiments with Lucy played by Katherine Louise Grinlaw

    Love amongst the ruins – Unhappy older couple

  • ‘One of the joys working on the second series was directing Graham Murray and Dayle Walker who play the much older, unhappy couple. Today we are bombarded by images of young people in love, both on  film, TV and also in social media. It’s as if love doesn’t exist for older folk, as if older people don’t crave  intimacy like the young do. What I tried to do with the older couple was address this imbalance, telling their story through the eyes of the younger, Tobias and Penny. I wanted to remind viewers that we all crave intimacy, respect and love, no matter what age. In fact I think  we crave it more the older we get’ – Noel Anderson 20/3/2017
  • A safe place, no camera, no crew, just you

  • Everyone has their safe place. A place away from cameras and iPhones. A place where you can be yourself. Can we share our safe place with friends and partners or is it exclusively ours? What happens if someone we know finds our safe place? It’s one of the questions I asked while directing Next 2. Watch the series to find the answer.
  • What if you could escape to a place somewhere between heaven and hell, a safe place from reality. And what if the safe place suddenly just became hell and you couldn’t find your way back to heaven. Back to home. Dating apps let us dream safely but our dreams rarely become reality. People are never who they say they are online, we all have a different online persona.

Rob Lobosco and Hana Vraniqi share a romp on the floor during therapy in Next 2

NEXT 2 directed by Noel Anderson

‘Ride the wave on NEXT 2’

I’m at the Railway Hotel on Chapel writing this blog during their weekly Sunday event SHAG. I’m alone, the DJ is playing dance music, some old, some new tunes. I think about my own search for intimacy to the beat of music. I drink down my beer, low carbs. Then I think about Australian comedy and Next 2 – the dating series. Australian comedy is the hardest thing in the world to direct, because usually at it’s heart are serious life issues, just look at Muriel’s Wedding. Keep an eye out for NEXT 2 when it launches later in the year. In the meantime season 1 premieres on FOXTEL on the 27/28th March. Happy dating everyone.  And Happy endings too xx

Now on Amazon Prime

Director Noel Anderson with a well known Australain

Australian comedy is the hardest thing in the world to direct

Noel Anderson’s 15 Mins Of Fame Showreel
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Noel Anderson recently directed the six part TV series NEXT…about the perils of online dating which premieres on Foxtel and We Are TV in 2017. Currently, it has had 64,000 views internationally. Noel completed NIDA’s Playwright Studio 1996, his written work includes: Hello Little Man (Melbourne Writer’s Social Anthology 2016), Kylie Kastle Throws A Party (performed in schools across Australia), Germ Warfare (Bondi Pavillion), Pulling Out (Best Writing Winner Midsumma Festival at Gasworks), Sammy and Dave (Stables Theatre), The Carer (Belvoir St Theatre), Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes Of Fame (La Mama & the Jewish Museum of Australia with Warhol’s Geniuses Exhibition), Love Letters (Melbourne Arts Centre) and the new Australian musical Audrey Hepburn And I Consider Our Assets  which premiered at the Melba Spiegeltent on 29th October 2015. Noel is currently working on his first feature film adaption of Sammy and Dave (Like Us on FB @sammyluvdave) and a music video for Audrey and I called ‘Travellers in Time’. You can follow Noel on Twitter: @Randyandy42 or https://www.facebook.com/noel.anderson42  Noel has directed over 50 theatrical productions, and is also looking for new Melbourne writers to be part of LOVE KILLS 2017 at the Melbourne Fringe, an evening of twisted stories about falling in and out of love. Noel’s plans to film several pieces from Love Kills 2017 as a web series.

Breakfast at Sweethearts – A True Story

I arrived in a clap of thunder and knew immediately that this was not going to be an ordinary Mardi Gras. I opted out of staying with friends in Sydney because I felt I needed to open my stay up to new experiences. ‘Let 2017 inspire you’ my mantra for the year.  I booked into Central Hostel (hotels had inflated their rates over Mardi Gras to a ridiculous prices like $900 a night) and upon arrival immediately unpacked.  Sydney was in full Mardi Gras mode, rainbow banners lining the streets and arcades. I felt like the prodigal son returning home for the first time in years, slightly wounded from my experiences in Melbourne but stronger for every bullet hole.  I had arranged series of appointments and catch ups with old friends, watching the parade, and a meeting with Hayes Theatre about the possibility of bringing ‘Audrey Hepburn and I Consider Our Assets’ up to Sydney . Audrey being my pet musical theatre project. A nine year journey, a project that saw me through tough times including 18 months of therapy.

I was on my way Spice Alley on Broadway with a mate when my iPhone rang, someone wanted to have breakfast with me at Sweethearts in Kings Cross, someone famous I was told, could I make it tomorrow morning a female voice enquired. “Yes, of course” I answered. But, wondered who that famous person could be?

Noel anderson believing in PINK

The next morning I showered at the hostel and quickly dressed. My sleep had been broken several times through the night by a rather large Aussie bloke with a chronic snoring problem and unpleasant odour coming from his Bluntstones. Tired but excited I grabbed an Opal card at Central Station and headed to Kings Cross. Once at Sweethearts, I was ushered to the rooftop, seated in room with a view at a small table set for two.

“She won’t be long” I was told by a female security guard and left to my own devices. Five minutes passed, still no one came.  So, feeling hungry, I stuck my fingers though the top of Corn Flake packet (travel size) stuffed some in my mouth and crunched.

“Darling you could have waited. Shame on you. I was fashionably late I believe?”

I recognised the voice immediately. It had a husky breathless quality.  A voice that belong on the silver screen.

“Well, governor don’t just stand there, offer a ladee a seat won’t cha Mr Anderson” she mocked in a thick cockney flower girl accent.

Audrey Hepburn was born to be a star, she knew it and so did I…so I immediately pulled out a chair.

“Darling it’s frightful being this rich and famous for such a long time. Sometimes, you crazy little man, I wish I could just die away like Cary Grant or Joan Crawford .  But, then someone like you comes along believing in me more than I do myself. It’s touching, honestly.  Now, pass me a packet of flakes.” She smiled,  adding milk and sugar to her bowl and continued chatting, mouth full.  “These Australian flakes are delicious! Now, tell me me, how is my musical going? Don’t answer! Of course it’s going well, isn’t it?”

I explained to Ms Hepburn over a bowl of Corn Flakes and a cup of English Breakfast that Australian musicals don’t have a big success rate, and even her being in it doesn’t guarantee a rich producer will come banging on the door.

“What nonsense! All producers care about is making money” she quipped crunching down. “I’m a star darling, they’ll make money.  What is wrong with Australian producers? They should respect Australian music. You know music is a great healer, particularly after a breakup. You just haven’t found the right partner that’s all. Music like love demands respect. Have you tried David Campbell? He loves theatre.”

I explained that years ago I shared the same stage as David at the same time. He was doing the 8pm show at the Stables Theatre in Sydney and I was doing the late night slot with a show I wrote and directed, which was very successful.

“Really darling. You had a hit in the same theatre as David Campbell? Fabulous. BTW I just listened to ‘Travellers in Time’ from our show, what a delight.  Thinking? The problem is finding the right set, the right crowd. Stay away from neutral toned people, pig people I call them, they are the pits. It’s the pink people you need for our project. I believe in you can do it darling, nothing is impossible.”

We finished our breakfast and sat in silence sipping tea. Then Audrey asked…

“The first movie you ever saw me in was….what?”

“Lillian Hellman’s Children’s  Hour, directed by William Wyler. The first movie I remember watching with my mother as a kid. And, Wyler is one of my favourite Hollywood directors” I answered.

“No kidding. Me too.”

I thought for a moment then confessed…

“I like films that been adapted from theatre pieces.”

“Darling I just had a brilliant idea. Write a letter to the prime minister, Mr Turnball. Say ‘Toodles said hello’… and remind him he owes me a favour. Tell him I sent you.” She smiled a Hollywood smile and finished her Corn Flakes.  We chatted for another half hour about our musical ‘Audrey Hepburn and I Consider Our Assets.’  She admitted to loving the lead song ‘Travellers in Time’… and begged me again to write to the Australian government demanding funding.

At Mardi Gras I stood huddled on the side of the road watching the parade with my friend in a yellow plastic rain jacket trying to stay dry.  During the parade as drag performers and PFLAGS passed by I kept hearing Audrey’s voice over the dance track I Will Survive. I stood dry as a bone in my yellow rain jacket watching the marching boys (dressed in pink speedos) thinking of Audrey Hepburn, thinking that ‘Nothing is impossible.’ Slowly I started to chant under my breath the mantra ‘I believe in pink.’ I repeated it twenty times then I thought ‘I must write to the prime minister Malcolm Turnball, before the parade passes by’.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Noel Anderson recently directed the six part TV series NEXT…about the perils of online dating which premiered on Foxtel, Apple TV and We Are TV in 2017. In the first month NEXT had 64,000 views internationally. Noel completed NIDA’s Playwright Studio 1996, his written work includes: Hello Little Man (Melbourne Writer’s Social Anthology 2016), Kylie Kastle Throws A Party (performed in schools across Australia), Germ Warfare (Bondi Pavillion), Pulling Out (Best Writing Winner Midsumma Festival at Gasworks), Sammy and Dave (Stables Theatre), The Carer (Belvoir St Theatre), Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes Of Fame (La Mama & the Jewish Museum of Australia with Warhol’s Geniuses Exhibition), Love Letters (Melbourne Arts Centre) and the new Australian musical Audrey Hepburn And I Consider Our Assets  which premiered at the Melba Spiegeltent on 29th October 2015. Noel is currently working on his first feature film adaption of Sammy and Dave (Like Us on FB @sammyluvdave) and a music video for Audrey and I called ‘Travellers in Time.’ You can follow Noel on Twitter: @Randyandy42 or https://www.facebook.com/noel.anderson42  Noel has directed over 50 theatrical productions, and is also looking for new Melbourne writers to be part of LOVE KILLS 2017 at the Melbourne Fringe, an evening of twisted stories about love.