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David Williamson’s keenly anticipated Rupert has just premiered at the MTC, and by-and-large lives up to the hype that’s almost as big as its towering subject.

Williamson’s rollicking play covers the extraordinary life and times of Rupert Murdoch, and whatever your personal thoughts about the man – he can never be accused of being dull.

Sean O’Shea is commanding and clearly has fun holding centre stage as the 83 year old Rupert, who banters with the audience and cheerfully informs them this play is his story, told his way. Over the next three hours Guy Edmonds plays the young Rupert as he climbs and claws his way from struggling at Oxford through to Fox News and the phone hacking scandal.

Along the way Williamson’s tongue-in-cheek script forgoes elaborate sets in favour of a small cast playing dozens of characters who played in Murdoch’s life. The foul-mouthed and fat-suited Frank Packer and sons Kerry and Clyde were highlights, as was Simon Gleenson’s Bob Hawke.

You won’t find detailed analysis into Murdoch’s psyche here and Williamson tends to report on the facts rather than offer judgement. What you do get is a good time and some light entertainment. Rupert would approve.

Rupert is showing at the Arts Centre until Sept 28. For tickets visit mtc.com.au.



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