Musicals, News & Commentary, Stage

Rob Guest Endowment: meet Matthew Predny

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The Rob Guest Endowment Award is now in its eighth year, recognising and supporting rising Australian musical theatre performers. The Endowment was established following the sudden and unexpected death of musical theatre icon Rob Guest in 2008 and is intended to nurture and develop young talents.

The six performers competing for the $20,000 prize this year are Du Toit Brendenkamp (The Sound of Music), Hilary Cole (Kinky Boots), Linden Furnell (Kinky Boots), Stefanie Jones (The Sound of Music), Genevieve Kingsford (The Light In The Piazza) and Matthew Predny (Kinky Boots). They’ll compete next Monday, November 14 in a Gala concert at the Sydney Lyric Theatre.

We’re asking each finalist to share five of their biggest inspirations, and here are Matthew Predny’s picks. Matthew is a recent NIDA graduate who this year appeared in Fiddler on the Roof and is now in the Melbourne cast of Kinky Boots.

Tina Fey (and Titus Burgess)

Whenever i’m asked for an inspiration, Tina Fey is the first person to pop into my head. I find her humour incredibly accessible – 30 Rock and Mean Girls are two of my favourite things. And in this clip she’s singing an awesome song. From a musical. With Titus Burgess.

Philip Quast

I was very lucky to have Philip as an associate tutor for a couple of years while at NIDA. He is a goldmine of knowledge, experience, beautiful instinct, and kindness. A performer I can always look towards as inspiration.

Bryan Cranston (and Anna Gunn)

For anyone who has watched this show, this almost needs no introduction. Anthony Hopkins called Cranston’s performance “… the best acting I have seen – ever.” It’s not hyperbole. Anna Gunn is a phenomenal actor too. For anyone who hasn’t seen the show, stop what you are doing for the next 50 hours and watch it.

Tatiana Maslany

I find Tatiana Maslany’s performance in Orphan Black inspiring. Her level of detail and flexibility is something an actor should always be striving for.

Stanley Kubrick

There are so many clips I could put here, because Kubrick’s films are brilliant. This opening sequence is slow-paced from a modern filmmaking perspective, and that makes the suspense so tangible. In the business of storytelling, Kubrick’s films are a work of art.

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