See review in its original context here by Rebecca Harkins-Cross for The Age.
The Collective’s Parade explores the unsettling case of Leo Frank
While greats like Stephen Sondheim have repeatedly demonstrated that the musical is not only a place for lightness and frippery, Parade explores a particularly dark chapter of American history: the death in 1915 of Leo Frank, a Jew persecuted and lynched for a murder he didn’t commit.
There’s something rightly unsettling about a crowd of rosy-cheeked patriots singing about the former glory of Georgia beneath a Confederate Flag, and not only because that zeal will soon turn savage. The tone never quite befits the grave subject matter.
James Cutler has directed a very watchable production, delivered by a vigorous ensemble, but the play itself niggles somewhat. The audience is positioned like onlookers in the courtroom, but we’re never given the true drama of that theatre. The bible-waving publisher (David Price) baying for blood is a cartoonish bad guy, goading the ambitious prosecutor Hugh Dorsey (Tod Strike) and flaming small-town hysteria.