Writer performer Dan Ilic, best known from The Ronnie Johns Half Hour, faced the music yesterday over criticism his musical staged during the Melbourne Fringe Festival was disrespectful to the family of deceased miner Larry Knight and Channel Nine journalist Richard Carleton.
In the middle of a media storm he agreed to change the title from Beaconsfield: A Musical in A Flat Minor to Beaconsfield: The Musical.
Ilic says the comedy is intended to show the media circus that enveloped the 2007 disaster.
But survivor Todd Russell said, “It’s pretty appalling. They’ve got no respect for Larry’s family.
“Fair enough they can take the mickey out of the media all they want, but when it comes to the Knight family and others it’s pretty poor.”
Characters said to feature in the 50 minute show include David Koch, Melissa Doyle, Eddie McGuire, union boss Bill Shorten and Naomi Robson – complete with lizard puppet, crooning a love duet together.
As a storm itself encircled the stage show, Ilic and his cast say they will proceed with performances at the tiny Butterfly Club from tonight until Sunday.
Some media have since crticised Fringe Festival organisers which has financial support from the Victorian Government.