The shock jock radio presenter has withdrawn due to “increased radio and television commitments.”
Alan Jones will no longer appear in the Sydney season of Opera Australia’s production of Anything Goes, it was revealed this morning. A statement from the company said Jones had been forced to pull out of his appearances at the Sydney Opera House due to “increased radio and television commitments.” Jones had already pulled out of the Brisbane season of the production.
Opera Australia was widely criticised for casting the shock jock radio personality in the role of the Captain of the S.S. American, when it was announced in September last year, not just for Jones’ far right political stance, but also because of his lack of theatre credentials or experience. Pianist and impressionist Gerry Connolly, who has been performing the role in the Melbourne leg of the tour to critical acclaim, will now appear in the Sydney performances in place of Jones. Opera Australia artistic director Lyndon Terracini said, “whilst it’s disappointing that Alan Jones is not available to play the Captain, we’re delighted that Gerry has agreed to remain as part of the original cast.”
Theatre mogul and co-producer of the production, John Frost, has previously cast Jones as President Franklin D. Roosevelt in his production of Annie. This divisive casting, viewed as a gimmick to attract publicity, was similarly unpopular with many music theatre lovers.
Opera Australia presents Anything Goes, touring nationally until October 31.