The Hats Off HIV/AIDS charity concerts have played host to more than a few Australian showbiz legends since they began back in 1997.
So it seems somewhat fitting the theme of this year’s concert at the Star City Casino Showroom on Monday 6 February is Hats Off To The Legends, in which tributes will be paid to some iconic entertainers.
Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, Cher, Aretha Franklin, Liza Minnelli, Marlene Dietrich and Peter Allen are among the line-up of icons, while Aussie legends like Toni Lamond, Jeannie Little and Barry Crocker will show off the talent that made them household names.
Other star names on the Hats Off bill include Caroline O’Connor, Shauna Jensen, Shaun Rennie, Susan Ann Walker, Scott Irwin and, making her live singing debut, drag diva Mitzi Macintosh.
Keeping them all in line is first-time director Trevor Ashley, also known on the drag circuit as Cleopatra Coup?/p>
Ashley has performed in every Hats Off concert since 1999, but this year marks the first time he will also step behind the scenes to run the show. He admits, so far, he is loving the experience.
Because this is for charity, everyone is on their very best behaviour, Ashley says during a break in rehearsals. And as I count 99 percent of these people as friends, it makes pulling this together very easy.
Hats Off is an incredible opportunity to get all of these performers together on the one night. You would never see the calibre of these people all on the one stage, as no one could afford to pull them together if it was not for a charity concert. Caroline O’Connor and Toni Lamond on one stage is pretty exciting stuff.
Since they were started in 1997 by Oz Showbiz Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS, the Hats Off concerts have raised almost $200,000 for people living with AIDS, HIV and HIV-related illnesses.
Hats Off To The Legends plays at the Star City Casino Showroom on Monday 6 February at 8pm. Bookings on 132 489 or visit the Ticketek website.