It is arguably the biggest musical in the world, earning an incredible 11 Tony Awards, a Pulitzer Prize as well as a Grammy, and it is coming to Australia — but not to Perth.
After months of theatrical battle, Sydney yesterday emerged as the city to secure the premiere of Hamilton, beating stiff competition from not just Melbourne and Brisbane but other cities in the Asia-Pacific region, too.
The show tells the story of Alexander Hamilton, an immigrant who went on to become America’s first treasurer. It will premiere in Sydney in February 2021. It is not known how much the NSW Government spent to secure the hip-hop musical but it is expected to draw more than 130,000 visitors to Sydney and generate about $84 million for the State.
Was Perth ever in the running to host the multimillion-dollar generating tourism drawcard? Did we even compete?
Tourism WA, the government agency tasked with promoting and attracting visitors to the State, could not answer, telling The West Australian it was carrying out a trial promotion of musicals in Perth to Asian audiences with the aim of maximising tourism outcomes.
Tourism Council chief executive Evan Hall said there was no reason WA could not host major theatrical events such as Hamiltonor Harry Potter, adding theyhad the potential to generate more tourism dollars than some major sporting events because of our proximity to South East Asia.
“Motorsport (for example) doesn’t generate a high return and would be nowhere near what Harry Potter or Hamilton (would generate),” he said.
Mr Hall said the State Government should be looking more strategically at attracting events to WA.