REVIEW: Centrelink The Musical

Words by Ash Qama

We’ve all had awful experiences dealing with Centrelink. Between the hour-long phone queues, seemingly random payment stoppages and absurdly long lines, there’s a lot to complain about. Centrelink the Musical attempts to transform the despair we all face at Centrelink into a fun, whimsical show.

Centrelink the Musical has been performed at comedy and fringe festivals since 2009. Sadly, the musical was let down by one key facet—the script. Whilst the characters were performed wonderfully and the musical numbers sung very well, the plot was baffling at times, especially with the inclusion of a Broadway-style number for no apparent reason. The songs were often repetitive and verses should have been cut after the choruses.

I really wanted to like Centrelink the Musical. It encompasses a very stereotypical but accurate representation of the people you might find yourself standing next to in line at your local Centrelink, and is well performed by the actors. But, much like the hold music you face when you call Centrelink, the musical numbers were dated and became tedious.

Centrelink the Musical is on at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival at the Metanoia Theatre until 12 April.