STATE THEATRE COMPANY SOUTH AUSTRALIA, BELVOIR ST THEATRE AND MELBOURNE THEATRE COMPANY PRESENT
By Lanie Robertson
Musical Arrangements by Danny Holgate
It’s 1959. In a small bar in Philadelphia that’s seen better days, one of the greatest jazz singers of all-time, Billie Holiday walks onstage. Unbeknownst to her audience, it will be one of her last performances. The jazz trio start to play, her incomparable voice fills the room. The songs flow – Ain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do, What a Little Moonlight Can Do, Strange Fruit, Don’t Explain, God Bless the Child – but so do the stories. Tales of her youth and her heroes – of Bessie Smith, Louis Armstrong, Benny Goodman and her beloved mother, the Duchess. Hard times, happy times. Love, oppression, addiction but survival, courage and grace. And to the music she keeps returning: “Singin’ is livin’ to me”. With signature charm and wit, she laughs more than she cries, as she tells us how she came to be known as the great Lady Day.
It takes an extraordinary talent to capture another extraordinary talent and in Zahra Newman, audiences will find just that.
After delighting audiences in leading roles onstage in shows like The Book of Mormon and A Raisin in the Sun and on-screen in Wentworth, Neighbours and Rosehaven, Newman’s talent and musical mastery takes full flight in a show the New York Daily News calls “a spell-binding tour-de-force – captivating, surprising and satisfying”.
“Turns jazz songs and standards into searching, and searing, portraits of life and love gone wrong that cast a shimmering spell.” New York Times
“It’s stunning, it’s heartbreaking. The anguish and fury in it is heart-stopping.” Huffington Post
“A legend is forever, and if Lady Day doesn’t bring its subject back, it does justice to her enduring spirit.” USA Today
Zahra as Billie is guaranteed to be one of the performances of the century. I have always loved both the beauty and melancholy of Billie Holiday’s golden voice and artistry. I have likewise always been in awe of Zahra’s great charisma and skill. And when Zahra sings, like Billie, she reaches to the centre of the earth and up to the heavens. You’ll be in heaven in this cabaret club that we will create in the Space Theatre. Book early to get a table onstage. You’ll never want to leave. Mitchell
Listen to a playlist featuring the songs of Billie Holiday as featured in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill.
Adult themes, coarse language, smoking of herbal cigarettes, references to sex, assault, racism, racial slurs and depiction of drug and alcohol use.
For select performances of the season, Elenoa Rokobaro will be playing the role of Billie Holiday. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 08 8415 5333.
1 hour 30 minutes (no interval).
Tickets are available via Ticketek.
Bookings via State Theatre Company South Australia ticketing incur a $8.95 transaction fee.
Bookings via Ticketek incur an $9.25 transaction fee.
Visit the Ticket Price page for the full list of subscription and single ticket prices.
Audio Described Performances and Pre-Show Briefing for blind and low-vision patrons
Saturday 2 September, 1pm (briefing), 2pm (performance) – click here to book online
Monday 4 September, 5.30pm (briefing), 6.30pm (performance with post-show Q and A) – click here to book online
Wheelchair access & Companion Cards
Wheelchair accessible seats, companion cards and other accessible bookings can be made via phone on 08 8415 5353 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm), or via email at email@example.com.
Pay-what-you-can tickets are available for people who hold a Healthcare Card and Pensioner Concession Card. Simply donate a minimum of $5 to attend any matinee or Wednesday evening performance. Pay-what-you-can tickets can be purchased at the venue box office from 60 minutes before the performance and must be paid for via credit/debit card as the venues are now cashless.
Please note: Pay-what-you-can tickets are subject to availability. We do not offer pay-what-you-can tickets to opening night performances. Pay-what-you-can tickets cannot be purchased in advance.
Company Rush tickets
Last minute tickets are available to all matinee and Wednesday evening performances at the box office 60 minutes before the show starts for only $39. Booking fees apply.
Please note: Company Rush tickets are subject to availability and no other offers or conditions apply. Rush tickets will not be available to opening night performances.
Under 30s /Full-time Student Offer
We offer heavily subsidised tickets to young people aged 30 or under and full-time students (school-aged or tertiary), as part of our role in promoting the future of South Australian culture. Tickets are only $49 for any performance date and can be booked online. Simply show your Proof of Age Card or Student Card when purchasing your ticket or at the venue. Booking fees apply.
We offer exclusive discounted ticket prices for all our shows for MEAA Members. MEAA tickets must be booked via phone, call our Ticketing team on 08 8415 5353 for more information and to book, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Booking fees apply.
Visit the Access page for more information on our Access Program.
2023 Subscribers are invited to join us for an exclusive Subscriber Briefing to learn more about the creation of the show.
– 21 August – click here for more information
Post Show Q&As
A Date with State
Enjoy a preview of AACTA Award and Sydney Theatre Award-winner Zahra Newman’s impressive musical talent, as she performs Billie Holiday’s iconic song “God Bless the Child“.
“God Bless the Child”
By Herzog and Holiday
Edward B Marks Music Company (BMI)
All rights administered by Warner Chappell Music Australia Pty Ltd
Click here to view the standard seating plan for the Space Theatre (please note, this plan does not reflect the Cabaret seating which will be in place for this production). For more detail, please contact our Ticketing team on 08 8415 5353.
This show will be performed at the Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre.
The recommended Dunstan Playhouse and Space Theatre drop off zone is at the northern end of the Riverbank Footbridge on War Memorial Drive (walk across the Footbridge to Dunstan Playhouse) or at the Intercontinental Hotel (walk north between the Intercontinental Hotel and Railway Station along the lane way to the Riverbank). There is also a drop off area and two accessible car spaces on lower Festival Drive, accessible from the west via Montefiore Road.
Getting to the Venue
Adelaide Festival Centre is easily accessible by public transport, including the tram (stop at Railway Station), trains, buses and a free bus service that operates on a loop throughout the city and North Adelaide with stops on the corner of King William Road and North Terrace.
For more information visit https://www.adelaidemetro.com.au/
For information about parking near the Adelaide Festival Centre, please click here.