Arts & Entertainment

The Rise And Disguise of Elizabeth R

Laura Murphy. Photo: Kate Williams

Gerry Connolly has been in the business of comedy for a very long time, and for much of that time he’s been impersonating the Queen. So much so that he can reliably speak on her behalf – and he’ll be doing just that when he presents his version of the Queen on stage in his latest show, The Rise And Disguise Of Elizabeth R.

“It’s a play on ‘The Rise and Fall of The Roman Empire’ and… it’s one of my disguises,” says Connolly trying to explain the title.

“And of course, ‘Elizabeth R’ – Elizabeth Regina,” he adds, pronouncing “regina” to rhyme with “vagina.”

It’s an example of his humour; a little bit cheeky, a little bit irreverent, but also affectionate. Connolly feels a special affinity with the Queen. He can empathise with her over the recent decision by Harry and Meghan to quit the Royal Family business. On the other hand, he says, “It’s a nice distraction from the Andrew debacle.”

Harry and Meghan’s departure is timely for Connolly’s show.

“It plays right into our theme, in that…I’m trying to let her go before she dies; is Scotland trying to let England go and go with Europe?…will Australia want to let her go? And all of this has changed perplexion because Harry has decided to go.”

The show has a loose narrative and will reference current affairs as well as being retrospective. Connolly will be joined by a male and female “ensemble.”

“The female ensemble is Laura Murphy…And the male is Rob Mallet,” he laughs. He himself will be wearing a fetching ensemble.

Until Mar 1. Hayes Theatre Co, 19 Greenknowe Ave, Potts Point. $60-$65+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.hayestheatre.com.au

By Rita Bratovich

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