Auspicious Arts Project - Stephen Lloyd Helper

Opera, Music Theatre & Cabaret


Join us in creating the dazzling professional revival of the Australian musical theatre masterpiece, LOLA MONTEZ for 2018.

Days Left

Originally produced in 1958, LOLA MONTEZ was a phenomenon. It had major seasons in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney; songs on the hit parade outselling Elvis, the cast album was the first Australian stereophonic recording, it was filmed and broadcast on the ABC.

60 years later, this masterpiece tragically has become a “lost” pillar of our cultural heritage along with the artists who created it: Peter Stannard, Peter Benjamin and Alan Burke. With the last living author, composer, Peter Stannard, Stephen Helper has revitalised LOLA MONTEZ with revisions and exciting, new, workshop-tested material making the show ready to reassert its brilliance for a modern audience and subsequent generations.

This campaign is to develop all the professional marketing, budgetary, logistical, sponsorship and investment strategy to ensure its successful Australian premiere.

There are 10 powerful reasons that LOLA MONTEZ demands to be done now. It has striking contemporary relevance and must be re-established in our theatrical heritage.


1. A true story about a powerful woman who led a self-determined life

2. A true Australian story

3. A true story about power and pitfalls of celebrity

4. A brilliant statement about re-inventing one’s life and living it to the full

5. The most successful original Australian musical of all time.

6. A “lost” masterpiece to be restored to its rightful place in Australian history

7. The most tune-filled score ever written in Australia

8. Revised with fresh and exciting material, proven ready for modern audiences

9. An important heritage as a foundation for future, authentic, Australian work

10. AND, composer Peter Stannard (age 86), deserves recognition and celebration in his lifetime of this great achievement

Your donations will be used to build the production team with the finest, experienced professional expertise to lay the production groundwork and production finance, prior to rehearsals. The complexity of successfully producing a musical can not be underestimated and it takes thorough and deep preparation. The producing team will expand to include a General Manager. The outcomes from this funding will be:
• marketing plan
• sponsorship package
• preliminary set design drawings and concept development
• selection and confirmation of full artistic team
• completed investment proposal
• meetings with potential investors, donors and sponsors
• complete production budgets, box office projections and running costs,
• secured venue dates,
• contracts development
• royalty advance to authors
• incidentals / contingency
• completion of preliminary casting

Live Projects


Projects Funded


Projects Supported


I am a Director, Writer and Producer of mainstream theatre that fulfills visions of social change, social justice, acceptance and celebration. From Broadway successes including a revival of FIDDLER ON THE ROOF (Tony-Nominated) and SMOKEY JOE’S CAFE (one of the 30 longest running musicals of all time) to contemporary Indigenous work at the Aboriginal Centre for Performing Arts in Brisbane. My mantra is “Artistry Connecting Audiences” bringing cultures, stories, hearts and minds outside the regular “white” preview by finding the universals within them that connect us all. I seek the affirmation of humanity in comedy, tragedy, music, dance in prominent venues around the country.

I focus on the creation of new work of scale with the highest professional standards. This includes CAFE REBETIKA! – a story of passion, displacement and resilience with the music of the Greek Blues. I create work authentically with artists with cultural and philosophical horizons beyond my own. I have strong relationships with venues, touring networks and funding bodies.

I am a graduate of Yale University’s theatre program and RMIT’s Multicultural Arts Professional Development program (Distinction).


William Zappa


Chris McGuigan