Dayton Tavares chats MAGIC MIKE LIVE

Magic Mike Live has pitched a tent right in the heart of Melbourne, besides the Yarra River in the beautiful Birrarung Marr.

The purpose-built three-storey Spiegeltent dubbed “The Arcadia” fits up to 600, transporting them away from their daily lives into the steamy and sensual world of the Magic Mike boys and their brilliant skills. Full of dance, music, comedy, and more, there is something for everyone in this thrilling and one-of-a-kind live show.

The cast is made up of 16 multi-talented men, including Dayton Tavares. A prodigy in the business, Dayton performed his first lead role as a child in the musical Billy Elliot and was invited to join the cast on Broadway as Billy Elliot. Whilst in the USA, he performed at the White House for Michelle Obama and sang the American National Anthem at an NFL game.

As an adult, Dayton’s stage credits include Opera Australia’s Carmen, choreographed by Kelley Abbey and The Dream Dance Company’s GenesisThe Secret Society and Enter the Vortex. He also featured in the acclaimed Blue Saint Production’s ‘In The Heights’ at the Sydney Opera House in 2018.

Dayton has worked with Artists such as Ricky Martin, Kelly Rowland and the Black-Eyed Peas and performed on The Voice AU and X -Factor Australia as well as starring in television campaigns for Toyota and Taco Now.

What for you has been the most challenging part of working on Magic Mike?

Dayton: Well, it really is hard to find a challenge because it really was just a show. I mean, during the audition process, it really is important to the creatives to kind of bring yourself to the plate and they kind of tailor the show around who they end up costing, depending on what kind of other original acts they can bring or different styles, which is really cool. Yeah, I think I think that’s the great thing about this show, is that there really is something for everyone to to enjoy and see. And it is really supportive of what we bring to to the show ourselves to kind of create that experience for everyone. Yeah. Probably the biggest challenge would just be just, you know, with any show managing like your exhaustion and things like, yeah, yeah, to get three, eight to 10 shows a week, but it’s only worth it when you hear the crowd roar and see people having fun. So, yeah, just, you know, we make sure our bodies are all conditioned and we’re eating all the right foods to be able to have sustainable energy and things like that to keep us going. Yeah, definitely. And that’s probably really the hardest part about it, because it really is just a great time.

And what about the most exciting?

Dayton: I think the exciting part was figuring out what different talents like everyone had. You kind of expect everyone’s going to be able to dance. The show doesn’t come with a script like some other shows, that was probably the coolest part about it. And it kind of brought us all closer in that process as well, which was really important for this show – to have really a close cast with great morale, just be supportive. And because it’s a show where we can really make noise, and we encourage the audience to do the same, the theatre is a bit different to, you know, going in watching an opera or something like that.

What would you say is the biggest difference between Magic Mike Live and other shows you’ve worked on?

Dayton: Oh, definitely the interaction with the audience. It keeps us on our toes, and it gives us something to be excited about, just gives us like a bit of change. Now with COVID restrictions easing and things like that, it’s getting more interactive than it already was. It’s a different version of connecting with the audience. It’s really nice to be able to be able to walk past someone – with a musical, you can look out into the audience and for three hours you’ve taken someone to a different place and escape reality, but this is another version of that. We pass audience members, but sometimes we just stop and have a chat with some of the audience to see where they came from to watch the show, or they might get some chocolates or a rose, and it’s really nice. It’s really cool to get to actually stop and chat and connect with people, even though you’re supposed to be doing a job.

I know each of the boys in the show has a ‘special skill’ – what’s yours?

Dayton: So within the show I play piano. I also do a lot of like flipping, so as well as dancing I probably jump and flip more backwards than I do choreography sometimes [chuckles]. There really is just something for everyone.

If you had to sum up Magic Mike Live in 3 words, what would they be?

Dayton: Three words… [laughs] Well, I mean, the show itself is really, really good. It’s a really safe environment to explore kind of that sensual side. It’s kind of like a steamy, sensual circus.


Magic Mike Live is currently playing at The Arcadia, Birrarung Marr, Melbourne. 

For tickets and more information, visit magicmikelive.com.au

Gabi Bergman

Gabi Bergman is a Melbourne-based performer and educator. She holds a Double Arts degree in Theatre Studies and Film/Screen Studies and a Master of Teaching (Secondary Education). Gabi has always been an avid lover of theatre, specifically musicals, and spends way too much money than she’d like to admit on tickets. Her most prized possession is her crate of theatre programs.

Gabi Bergman

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