Review: The Tap Pack, Dunstan Playhouse

These Aussie blokes just keep on tapping!
Review: The Tap Pack, Dunstan Playhouse

The Tap Pack.

The Tap Pack must be one of our most successful theatrical exports, constantly touring the world from Beijing to the West End, the Edinburgh Fringe, and all ports in between. And they are always popular on international cruise liners too. With a full Australian touring calendar this year, they are embarking on a major USA tour in early 2020. 

These 'four Aussie blokes' (or five depending on the line-up on the night) are a slick package. The money their parents invested in dancing and acting schools for their young boys was clearly money well spent! They are all a credit to their years of tuition and practice with some complicated routines and an easy stage presence. They can sing as well as dance and Ben Brown especially has a wonderful musical theatre persona.


Each member gets a few moments in the spotlight to share some of their own story, and the 'we’re just four Aussie blokes' line get a good work-out. They even flew the local footy team flag to win over the home crowd. (Do they get one for every town they visit?)

Based loosely on the Frank Sinatra – Sammy Davis Jnr ‘Rat Pack’ of the 1950s, The Tap Pack show is two hours of great dancing, familiar tunes, and warm-hearted banter between the songs. On this night in Adelaide, the vibe was more Robbie Williams Swing When You’re Winning than old blue eyes, and they did it with style. 

The amplified tapping added excitement to the dancing and there were quite a few routines with the traditional hoofer’s white canes. These were well choreographed but did slow the pace a little. There was even a brief but well-executed soft-shoe shuffle on a small sand board. This would have been more effective with some direct amplification on the sand.

Overall, the show was fast and fun and the audience was appreciative. It would have been enhanced with some live music, even just a duo or trio on stage, to pump up the energy and excitement.

4 stars ★★ 

The Tap Pack
Created by Jesse Rasmussen, Jordan Pollard and Thomas J Egan
Directed and co-created by Nigel Turner Carroll
Produced by Kym Halpin

10-12 April 2019
Dunstan Playhouse, Adelaide Festival Centre


Diana Carroll

Monday 15 April, 2019

About the author

Dr Diana Carroll is a writer, speaker, and reviewer based in Adelaide. Her work has been published in newspapers and magazines including the SMH, the Oz, Woman's Day, and B&T. Writing about the arts is one of her great passions.