Manning Valley Choral Society Movie Song Cruise

On song: Robyn Rankin and Phil Rayson sing “Baby It’s Cold Outside”. In the background are Gina Douglas, Carol Dever, Leo Yarnold and Will Knight.
On song: Robyn Rankin and Phil Rayson sing “Baby It’s Cold Outside”. In the background are Gina Douglas, Carol Dever, Leo Yarnold and Will Knight.

The Manning Valley Choral Society is preparing to embark on a cruise departing from the Manning Entertainment Centre on Saturday September 23 and Tuncurry Bowling Club on Sunday September 24.

The choristers’ two-hour cruise begins at 2pm each day, and features Academy Award winning songs from 1934 to the present.

Written and directed by Geraldine Mullin, the story between the songs follows a group of characters and crew on board a cruise dedicated to songs that have won an Academy Award. 

The Captain and his wife, the Cruise Director, lead the way for the other characters as they navigate through a story involving smugglers, affairs, secret love and; of course; a murder. 

Choir members: Kellie Trezise, Geraldine Mullin, Roslyn Clinch, Lia Wrigley, Heather Sydee, Gina Douglas, Sue LeStrange, Merri Rumble, Kim Billingham, Leo Yarnold, Will Knight,  Phil Rayson, Wayne Lambert, Paul McDonell, George Dan
and Ed Pearce sing “On the Atchison Topeka and Santa Fe”.

Choir members: Kellie Trezise, Geraldine Mullin, Roslyn Clinch, Lia Wrigley, Heather Sydee, Gina Douglas, Sue LeStrange, Merri Rumble, Kim Billingham, Leo Yarnold, Will Knight, Phil Rayson, Wayne Lambert, Paul McDonell, George Dan and Ed Pearce sing “On the Atchison Topeka and Santa Fe”.

Joining the cruise are such characters as the unlucky husband and his wandering-eyed wife, a pair of diamond smugglers, two men desperately looking to “pick-up” some women, two women desperately looking to get over being seasick, a security officer used to dealing with drunks and pickpockets, and a customs and excise officer who gets plunged into more than he can usually deal with.

As the characters rock their way back and forth through an entertaining, twisting and turning plot, there are scenes which will remind the observant audience members of fantastic films set on the sea. 

A mix of ‘Titanic’, ‘The Poseidon Adventure’ (without the giant wave) and ‘Carry on Cruising’ can be seen in the adventurous plot, and there are some nods to other classic movies and TV programs throughout the show. 

Solo: George Dan sings “You”ll Never Know”. Kay Lygoe, Merri Rumble and Kim Billingham are pictured in the background.

Solo: George Dan sings “You”ll Never Know”. Kay Lygoe, Merri Rumble and Kim Billingham are pictured in the background.

Somehow, the show ends up on a calm sea, as the various sub-plots come together, with mysteries solved, wrongs righted, and smugglers somehow snatched before the cruise comes to an end.

Songs in the show include the first song to win an Oscar, ‘The Continental’ from 1934, and many other familiar songs such as: ‘Never On Sunday’; ‘As Time Goes By’ and ‘Swinging On a Star’. 

The end of the first act is dedicated to a medley of songs written by Henry Mancini, who has won the most Oscars for songwriting. 

There are also some more contemporary songs which include songs from the Walt Disney films ‘Aladdin’ and ‘Pocahontas’.