Theatre / Cast Announce

33 Variations announce epic cast to join Ellen Burstyn

Some of the finest local talent will join Hollywood actress Ellen Burstyn as she makes her Australian stage debut in 33 Variations at the Comedy Theatre.

If you’ve finally recovered from the news that Oscar, Emmy, Tony AND Golden Globe Winning Hollywood legend Ellen Burstyn will be coming to Melbourne to make her Australian stage debut in 33 Variations then you had better brace yourself before we tell you about the rest of the cast.

Burstyn will play Katherine Brandt a musicologist who has dedicated her career to discovering the mystery of Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations (thus the title of the play). The play depicts both past and present showcasing Beethoven’s struggle and Brandt’s journey to understanding his work.

Lisa McCune will star as Katherine’s daughter Clara who is trying to connect with her mother while she faces a serious hardship. McCune is the winner of ten Logie Awards for her work in Blue Heelers and has starred in multiple theatre productions including The Sound of Music and The King and I as well as, most recently, the Melbourne Theatre Company production of Gloria.

William McInnes will play Beethoven, also a Blue Heelers veteran McInnes has appeared in SeaChange, My Brother Jack, and Look Both Ways as well as Melbourne Theatre Company’s production of An Ideal Husband.

Helen Morse will play Katherine’s colleague Dr Gertrude Ladenburger. Morse is a celebrated Australian actress having appeared in over 80 major Australian productions, including recent Helpmann nominated performances in John with the Melbourne Theatre Company and Memorial with Brink Productions.

Well recognised Australian actor Francis Greenslade plays Anton Diabelli the composer who inspired Beethoven’s work. Greenslade is known to Australian audiences for his work in Mad As Hell, The Ex PM, Winners and Losers and multiple productions for the Melbourne and Sydney Theatre Companies.

Toby Truslove plays Mike, a nurse who meets Katherine and her daughter Clara. Truslove’s television credits include lead roles in Utopia, Laid, Outland, and The Strange Calls. He was most recently seen in the Malthouse/Belvoir production of Bliss.

Finally, as Schindler, Beethoven’s secretary, is Green Room Award winner Andre de Vanny, whose recent credits include the Melbourne Theatre Company’s production of Red opposite Colin Friels, and a season of Swan Song at the Australian Theatre Company in Los Angeles.

Phew! We hope you were sitting down for that one. With such an incredible cast tackling an important and powerful narrative we can’t wait to see what this cast brings to the Comedy Theatre in March. Tickets are available at for this limited season.

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