AFTER 25 years on the world stage and over 8000 performances in over 60 countries, The Australian Bee Gees Show returns to Australia for their 25th Anniversary tour.

The tribute act’s new show will be presented in two parts and feature all of the hits by the Brothers Gibb, in a nostalgic trip down memory lane in a multimedia concert event.

As part of the tour, the group will perform at The Wedge on Thursday, August 18 and the West Gippsland Arts Centre, Warragul on Saturday, August 20.

Michael Clift performs the role of Barry Gibb, the only surviving member of the Bee Gees. In 1996, Mr Clift formed The Australian Bee Gees Show and, 20 years on, has toured all over the world, including a Las Vegas residency.

Mr Clift spoke to the Gippsland Times to spill the beans on what to expect from the shows.

Thanks for speaking to us Michael Clift. During this tour, will it be the same set every night or will it change between shows?

We do the same show for a whole tour, more or less. We change things up a little each year, so when people come back and see the show it’s a little different than last time. Of course, all of the big hits are always a staple.

Is this the entire Bee Gees era or is it focusing on a particular time period?

It really is the whole career catalogue that we draw on to put the show together. The 60s and 70s have most of the big hits, but there are some fantastic songs that were written for and recorded by other artists, and some great songs by the Bee Gees in the 80s and 90s. We feel that you can’t tell the whole story by just focusing on the 60s and 70s.

How do you pull off Barry Gibb in look, voice and performance?

It really is a challenge – it makes it difficult in casting our subs and touring guys to be of the standard we need for a Las Vegas show, and have the look and skillset to do any of the Brothers Gibb characters. We portray Barry, Robin and Maurice around the 1997 One Night Only tour look. We do some songs from the 1997 album Still Waters, so a retro look really didn’t work for this version of the show. The hardest part is pulling all the elements of the character together – the look, sound and the instrument.

What is your favourite Bee Gees song, and album?

MY favourite is ‘To Love Somebody’, such a wonderful song with a powerful vocal. It is one of the crowd favourites too. My favourite album is Main Course, I think that album was where Bee Gees truly made the leap from being a teenage Beatlesque group to evolve into the 70s powerhouse they would become. It’s also where Barry discovered his amazing falsetto while recording ‘Nights on Broadway’.

Have you had any interaction with the Bee Gees themselves over the years? What do they think of you?

Only through their management. They have told us they are aware of our show and are happy with the respect and attention to detail that we approach the show. That is a very gratifying thing for us.

A Bee Gees biopic is in the works directed by Kenneth Branaugh, probably inspired by Bohemian Rhapsody, Motley Crue’s The Dirt, Rocketman, Elvis etc. What do you think about that idea and what would you like to see?

I heard that Bradley Cooper was possibly talking about the role of Barry in the film. I’m not sure if that is rumour or fact, but having to cast the roles of the Brothers Gibb in our show, I know it is a challenge. I hope it is somewhere in between Bohemian Rhapsody and Rocketman. I liked the fact that Rocketman really told the ups and downs of Elton John’s life and career, whereas Bohemian Rhapsody glossed over them (for Queen).

Metallica and Kate Bush re-entered the mainstream charts after their songs were used on Stranger Things recently. What underappreciated Bee Gees song would you like to see revived by being featured on the show?

I just started watching it two weeks ago. I love the fact that not only do they have great attention to detail with 80s life and culture, but that the soundtrack is performed on 80s synthesisers, just as if the show was produced in the 80s. I’m guessing Season Five will be set in 1987, so I would have to say that ‘You Win Again’ would be perfect! Let’s see if they are thinking the same thing!

Have you performed in Sale or Gippsland before? What do you think of The Wedge as a venue?

Many times. We enjoy ourselves and The Wedge is a great venue. We really do have some wonderful regional theatres in Australia, it’s so important and I hope future governments will continue to make sure there is always funding for them.

Thanks for talking to us, I hope our readers enjoy the show!

We would love to see you all there. It is a fun show, we are excited to be coming back to Australia after a few years away.

The Australian Bee Gees Show will perform at The Wedge on Thursday, August 18 and the West Gippsland Arts Centre, Warragul on Saturday, August 20.

Tribute act The Australian Bee Gees Show. Photo: supplied.