John Foreman has been a warming presence on Australian TV since starting with Bert Newton on Good Morning Australia, opening the show with his phenomenal musical skill and his impeccable comedic repertoire.

In 2015, the beloved musical director, pianist, composer and OAM, helmed his own Network TEN late-night variety talk show, The Big Night In With John Foreman, complete with ‘live’ offbeat advertisements and of course an impressive lineup of musical guests willing to open up to the Australian entertainment icon. Check out Foreman’s interview on the show with Aussie music legend turned politician, Peter Garrett, or Tina Cousins’ unforgettable performance on the show below.

John Foreman’s humour, intelligence, and talent are finally back on the screen – albeit digitally – with uplifting, inspiring, fun and familiar entertainment that reconnects artists with audiences in a time of physical isolation for a weekly live digital show airing April 29 hosted by The Arts Centre Melbourne on their website and YouTube.

Foreman catches up with different stars of the entertainment industry each week from their homes about their career highlights and favourite showbiz stories. They chat and perform some long-distance piano and vocal numbers. Then, as the spectacular finale of each episode, the artist is joined (virtually) by the 60-piece Aussie Pops Orchestra, which for more than 30 years has brought popular music to the people.

In the first episode John Foreman catches up with a beloved regular on the Australian theatre and music scene, Casey Donovan, and Australian musical theatre performer, Josh Piterman, who will dial in from London’s West End where he is currently starring in The Phantom of the Opera.

Episodes will feature cameo appearances from television, stage and screen stars including some of Arts Centre Melbourne’s most popular performers, a weekly appearance by a “Hollywood star”, and some satirical political commentary. Viewers can also expect some fun, digital audience participation.

“I’m thrilled that Arts Centre Melbourne is creating a fantastic, new, virtual platform for artists,’’ says John Foreman.

“Obviously it’s not the same as performing in the magnificent Hamer Hall or the stunning State Theatre – and our Aussie Pops Orchestra are all phoning in their parts from their homes – but the joy of performing to an audience is undiminished, and our combined commitment to bringing audiences the very best music, from many genres, is as strong as ever”.

Recently John Foreman rallied artists including Rhonda Burchmore, Casey Donovan, Bert and Patti Newton and Courtney Act to support the arts community through a united video of these artists singing “What a Wonderful World”, backed by a virtually-conducted orchestra. The clip went viral, receiving over 200,000 views in just seven days. There was heartfelt gratitude and pleasure from many who have watched and re-watched.

“When the opportunity came up to work with John Foreman and his Aussie Pops Orchestra we jumped at the chance to bring an Arts Centre Melbourne experience straight into people’s lounge rooms, says Arts Centre Melbourne CEO Claire Spencer.

“We think this show will be an extraordinary experience that we hope will bring a little bit of joy to people during this strange time. It is also a great opportunity to support our performers and musicians and share their talents with as many people as possible.”

Arts Centre Melbourne announced on 15 March the cancellation of all scheduled performances and events and temporary closure of its buildings to the public due to COVID-19. Now Arts Centre Melbourne is focussed on finding new ways to engage with audiences including the digital online hub – Together with You.

On Wednesday 29 April at 7pm audiences can access Arts Centre Melbourne’s Big Night In with John Foreman via Arts Centre Melbourne digital initiative Together with You on Arts Centre Melbourne’s website.

Weekly from Wednesday 29 April, 2020 at 7pm



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