Drag Queen cabaret artiste
Cabaret, Calendar, November 19, Performing arts

Cabaret: Carlotta: Queen of The Cross

14 – 16 November @ Downstairs at the Maj ·
Presented by His Majesty’s Theatre ·

Australian icon, political activist, living legend: Carlotta has led an extraordinary life. Outrageously funny and brutally honest, the inspiration for Priscilla, Queen of the Desert takes you on another whirlwind ride with songs and stories from 50 years on and off the stage.  Accompanied by Helpmann Award winner Michael Griffiths.

“Watching Carlotta Queen of the Cross is attending an audience with a living legend” – Stage Whispers

“Her voice is strong and her timing impeccable…the applause was deafening” – Global Media Post

More info:
https://www.ptt.wa.gov.au/venues/his-majestys-theatre/whats-on/carlotta-queen-of-the-cross/

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Cartoon like image of woman's face with rabbit ears and hot pink hair
Cabaret, Calendar, November 19, Performing arts

Cabaret: The Pink Oyster Cult

9 November @ Connections Nightclub ·
Presented by Acid Tongue ·

You are invited to the premiere of a sensational new performance anthology, the Pink Oyster Cult! Wild, irreverent and exciting new work from some of Australia’s most beautifully obscene performance artists will land in Perth quarterly in an ongoing bacchanalia of bizarre.

This adults-only, immersive affair weaves a gossamer web between the worlds of burlesque, drag, kink, stripping, sideshow, video, visual and performative art. With each volume thoughtfully curated from a rotating cast of nightlife luminaries, you are sure to delight in the unexpected pleasures and surprises from the mavericks hidden within.

Let the Pink Oyster Cult unfurl its fleshly petals and ensnare you in an evening of satyric revelry. This is the secret garden you’ve been searching for.

Starring: Scarlet Adams, Ruby, Princess of Pain, Coco Cobana, DeeDee Luscious, Vesper White,  Cougar Morrison and more!

More info
W: www.pinkoystercult.com
E:  hello@pinkoystercult.com

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Drag queen with large yellow wig and bright pink jacket
Cabaret, Calendar, Comedy, Performing arts, September 19

Dragfest: Out Of Office

14 September @ Connections Nightclub ·
Presented by Karen From Finance and inthedark ·

Pack your calculators, save your spreadsheets and set your automatic email replies – because with a whole bunch of annual-leave up her sleeve, Karen From Finance is heading Out of Office. This September she’s hitting the road and she’s hitting it hard. Say goodbye to the 80-hour-work week, and jump on board the Finance express for this one-woman journey of self-discovery – and self-annihilation.

Karen’s debut one-woman show will feature all of her trademark high-camp, spoken-word lip syncs and hilarious mash-ups, plus all the buffoonery and tomfoolery you can poke a presentation pointer at. Think Dolly Parton replacing Chevy Chase in National Lampoon’s Vacation. Buckle up, it’s going to be one bumpy ride…

More info
W: www.karenfromfinance.com/outofoffice
E:  contact@karenfromfinance.com

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Cabaret, Fringe World, News, Reviews

Captivating from start to finish

Fringe World review: Holland St Productions, What Doesn’t Kill You [blah blah] Stronger ·
Downstairs at The Maj, 5 February ·
Review by Jenny Scott ·

What Doesn’t Kill You [blah blah] Stronger is a gloriously funny whirlwind of a cabaret, paying tribute to those who have suffered notable near-death experiences – such as Alexander Selkirk (who was marooned on an island of feral cats), Anne Hodges (the only known person to be hit by a meteorite), and Violet Jessup (the unfortunate stewardess who survived three shipwrecks).

Although most of these stories will sound familiar to anyone with a passing interest in weird historical anecdotes, the aggressively charismatic Erin Hutchinson and Tyler Jacob Jones transform these tales into a diverse assortment of hilarious musical numbers.

Joined by Joshua Haines on piano, who plays an original score by composer Robert Woods, this cast of three exceptionally skilled local performers is an absolute delight to watch on stage. Their ceaseless enthusiasm, faultless musical capabilities and charmingly weird jokes ensure that the show remains captivating from beginning to end.

Special mention goes to Jones’s two-hatted “trio” musical number – and where else can you hear WA performers use their classically trained voices to sing about faeces over a calypso beat?

What Doesn’t Kill You… was last seen at the 2018 Fringe World, where it won both the Martin Sims Award for the best new Western Australian work, and the The West Australian Arts Editor Award. It’s easy to see why.

What Does Kill You [blah blah] stronger plays Downstairs at the Maj until February 9.

Pictured top are Tyler Jacob Jones and Erin Hutchinson. Photo: Pia Fruin.

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Lady hosting game show
Cabaret, Fringe World, News, Performing arts

Filling in the blanks with Dolly

With celebrity panellists pitted against contestants,  running jokes and a backdrop of double entendre comments,  TV game show Blankety Blanks (and other versions) played to audiences in  Australia, the UK and USA in the 1970s and 80s.

Now Melbourne-based cabaret artist Dolly Diamond is bringing her own version, Dolly Di*mond’s Bl*nkety Bl*nks, to Fringe World. Seesaw caught up with Dolly to fill in some of the blanks.

Dolly Diamond

Seesaw: When did you first know you wanted to be a performer?
Dolly Diamond: I grew up performing and was lucky enough to play the title role of Annie, in the musical Annie (when I would sing “The sun’ll come out tomorrow”, you knew it bloody would. I grew up in London and moved to Australia ten years ago. I feel as if I’ve spent most of my working life on stage, or at the bar.

S: What do you love most about what you do?
DD: It’s a remarkable job really… not many people receive applause when they’re at work. I really love the laughter, it’s my drug of choice (also Valium) I used to try and get a laugh at any cost but as you mature as a performer you learn to work with an audience, not against them. I’m so comfortable on stage these days…  but I do like to make people squirm a little.

S: Career highlight?
DD: I recently celebrated a 15 Year Anniversary Gala at the Atheneum theatre in Melbourne and it was  such a magical evening. I had an array of special guests: Melbourne Gay and Lesbian Choir, Footscray and Yarraville City Band, the Phones and many more. It feels like such an achievement if you can sustain a  career in this business we call show.

S: Career lowlight?
DD: I tend not to dwell on the low points of this job. I certainly couldn’t name names. I work really hard to make a quiet or dull audience enjoy themselves, that’s my job. However, I’ve learnt over the years that not everyone is going to love you, not every gig can be a fiesta and you can’t push shit up hill. *Fact.

S: You’re no stranger to Fringe World. What made you decide to return this year?
DD: It’s my third Fringe appearance and I feel like my audience is growing. It’s not easy when you’re not as well known in a different state but I’m not afraid of a challenge (or an altered state). I feel like this show has such a broad appeal as it’s such a well known game show. It’s been a part of our lives for so many years, here in Australia with Graham Kennedy and in the UK with Lily Savage. There’s even a current version on Ru Paul’s Drag Race, with the Snatch Game.

S: Tell us about your 2019 Fringe World show, Dolly D*mond’s Bl*nkety Bl*anks
SS: Our version of Blankety Blanks relies on the various Perthonalities we’ve lined up… and they’re all really special.  We have two audience members as our contestants and, of course, we have no idea what they’re going to say, or what they’re going to add to the mayhem. So it’s really my job to hold it all together and that’s the part I love the most.

S: Aside from your show, what are you looking forward to seeing/doing at Fringe World?
DD: I can’t wait to get over to Perth Fringe. It’s always such a breath of fresh air to be in the West. I feel like it’s such a relaxed way of living and thinking; there’s a lot to be said for being away from all the other capital cities. Perth people enjoy life and don’t have anything to prove and I admire that… it’s how I live my life. I’ve booked tickets for Feminah and La Soiree

You can catch Dolly Di*mond’s Bl*nkety Bl*nks Downstairs at his Maj from 12 – 16 February. 

 

 

 

 

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Lady in orange dress singing on stage
Cabaret, Calendar, Fringe World, Performing arts

Cabaret: Valentine’s Cabaret

14 February @ St George’s Cathedral ·
Presented by Saint G Theatre ·

For one night only, Perth’s gothic heritage-listed Cathedral is transformed into a magical Valentine’s  cabaret cave.

Be hypnotised as performers from around the globe mesmerise you with a sultry selection  of songs and shows. Experience the electric energy coursing through the air in the cavernous Cathedral space.

More info:
www.fringeworld.com.au/whats_on/valentine-s-cabaret-fw2019

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Cabaret, Features, Fringe World, Music, News, Performing arts, Vocal

Channelling the greats

Singer Ali Bodycoat will need no introduction to local jazz aficionados. A regular performer at Perth’s Ellington Jazz Club, she’s also a Fringe World veteran. This year she’s all about powerhouse women, performing solo in “From Bodycoat to Barbra” and joining forces with Jessie Gordon in “Peggy Lee and Judy Garland”.

Ahead of her back-to-back season, Bodycoat sat down with Seesaw for a Fringe Session Q&A.

Profile Headshot of Ali Bodycoat
Ali Bodycoat

Seesaw: When did you first know that you wanted to be a singer?
Ali Bodycoat: I have always wanted to perform – for as long as I can remember I had a huge desire to be in the entertainment industry.

S: Tell us about your training…
AB: The most influential formal training I had came from three incredible women – Sandra Gorringe, my high school drama teacher, Janice Taylor-Warne my classical voice teacher at WAAPA and Helen Matthews, my private jazz voice teacher. To this day, the techniques that were taught to me by these marvellous three are a part of how I approach the stage in any genre. I completed a Certificate of Musical Theatre at WAAPA and literally “fell” into the jazz world in Perth. The greatest lessons are still continuing and these are and always have been, on the job!

S: Describe your artistic practice…
AB:
Remember why we are doing this, focus on the music and the reasons behind the song – not yourself, and never, ever break an audience’s pre-conceived notions of the fantasy of being entertained. Most importantly, develop your technique and routines early so you always have that strength to fall back on.

S: What do you love most about what you do?
AB: The joy of giving an experience to an audience – for just one tiny moment, you are their travel guide and you can take them anywhere to which their mind chooses to travel. There is also something incredibly special about making music with a group of musicians who are as behind the music as you are.

S: Career highlight so far?
AB: Performing with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and also the Proms New Years’ Eve Concert with Mark Coughlan at the Perth Concert Hall.

S: Funniest career moment so far?
AB: Oh so countless – each performance has its moments of hilarity – probably being naked onstage but that’s another story…!

S: Tell us about your two Fringe World shows, “From Bodycoat to Barbra” and “Peggy Lee & Judy Garland”
AB: The unforgettable Jessie Gordon and I perform together in “Peggy Lee & Judy Garland”. “From Bodycoat to Barbra” presents the music of Barbra Streisand. Both shows are at the Ellington Jazz Club and are one hour slots jam-packed with the legends of the women and their music!

S: Aside from your show, what are you looking forward to seeing/doing at Fringe?
AB: As much as possible… get out that programme and DIVE IN!

S: What is your favourite part of the playground?
AB: Well I’ve always had a penchant for a trampoline…

You can catch Ali Bodycoat in 
“Peggy Lee & Judy Garland”, 6 – 10 February 
“Ali Bodycoat Presents – From Bodycoat to Barbra”, 13 – 17 February
at the Ellington Jazz Club on Beaufort Street.

Pictured top: Ali Bodycoat with Jessie Gordon.

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A man sitting at a piano holding up two albums by Kylie Minogue
Cabaret, Features, Fringe World, News, Performing arts

He should be so lucky

It all started with Madonna, says Michael Griffiths. The award-winning Australian cabaret performer has been touring Fringe festivals with his tribute acts since 2014. His new show Songs by Kylie traces the pop princess’s rise from Neighbours to music superstardom, and it’s coming to Fringe World 2019.

Ahead of the show, Griffiths took some time to answer Seesaw’s Q&A.

Seesaw: When did you first know that you wanted to be a musician?
Michael Griffiths: I fell in love with pop music at a very early age and grew up playing the piano by ear. Music has always been my first love but actually being on stage came a little later, more in my late teens when I started doing amateur musicals for fun, in my hometown Adelaide.

S: Tell us about your training…
MG: I trained in music composition in Adelaide first, before deciding that being in musicals looked like a far more glamorous means of employment. So I made the big move West to study at WAAPA in the late 90s. I then worked solidly in musicals for about 15 years, in a string of jukebox musicals – SHOUT!, We Will Rock You!, Priscilla and Jersey Boys – and that’s where I really developed my skills.

Cabaret is a newer venture and one which I’ve learned strictly on the job. The best part about it is being reunited with the piano after many years of neglect. There were about ten years where I barely touched one and decided I could no longer play.

S: Describe your artistic practice…
MG: I’m a travelling cabaret performer with a bunch of shows under my belt and have been on the Fringe circuit for over six years now. It all started with a Madonna tribute which I performed in Perth in 2014, followed by tributes to Annie Lennox, Cole Porter and Peter Allen. I’m inclined to steal Barry Humphries’ line and say that I’m “in the business of cheering people up”.

S: What do you love most about what you do?
MG: I love arriving in an old theatre with charm and history. They are very special places and I never tire of them. But at the risk of sounding super corny, making people happy is the best part about what I do.

S: Career highlight so far?
MG: Performing at London’s Royal Albert Hall, on Elton John’s piano with a mirror ball from Kylie Minogue’s Christmas party,  wins hands down.

S: Career lowlight?
MG: Corporate gigs sometimes don’t go so well and I usually try to avoid them. I sang at a car yard launch – why on earth did I say yes to that? – a few years ago and it was like pulling teeth.

S: Funniest career moment so far?
MG: I’ve been Carlotta’s music director the last couple of years and have never laughed so much on stage. She’s a living legend and gets away with absolute murder.

S: What made you decide to come back to Fringe World?
MG: I’ve been coming to Fringe World since 2014 and it’s always such a treat to be back in Perth. I lived on Beaufort St, Mt Lawley in the 90s before it was “zhuzhy” and Perth has been a second home to me ever since. Summer is the best time of year and I adore Perth audiences – they’re very generous and always up for a good time.

S: Tell us about “Songs by Kylie”
MG: I explore the back catalogue of Kylie Minogue, starting out with her time on Neighbours doing the “Locomotion”, teaming up with “hit factory” Stock, Aitken and Waterman, going it alone to find her own voice and her rebirth as the ultimate disco diva. The early songs are such guilty pleasures and so much fun to sing; they always put a big smile on my face. I re-imagine quite a few familiar songs too, so if you’re a Kylie fan like me, there’s some surprises in store. Some songs, such as “Better The Devil You Know”, are pop perfection and you don’t mess with them.

S: What’s your favourite part of the playground?
MG: I love a big long slippery dip 🙂

You can catch Michael Griffiths: Songs by Kylie at De Parel Spiegeltent @ The Woodside Pleasure Garden, January 29 – February 3.

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The Big City
Cabaret, Comedy, Features, Fringe World, News, Performing arts

A clown in the city

Louis Spencer’s new work The Big City has come full circle. Bringing together clowning, cabaret, comedy and puppetry in what he describes as  “a Pixar-esque bundle”, The Big City began its life as a ten-minute piece, as part the Blue Room Theatre’s 2017 “600 Seconds” program at Fringe World.

Ahead of the premiere of the full-length version of the show, Seesaw caught up with Spencer to find out more about his path to clowning.

Seesaw: When did you first know that you wanted to be an artist?
Louis Spencer: Probably when I was in my early 20’s and trying to figure out if I should do something that I love or just get a job. At the time though the word “artist” wasn’t something that crossed my mind, rather I just knew that I wanted to be involved in theatre and the performing arts. I always wanted to be a performer when I was a child but I kind of went back and forth on if it was something that should actually go for. It wasn’t until I had been in university for a year or two that being an “artist” was something I considered.

S: Tell us about your training…
LS: I studied at WAAPA in the Bachelor of Performing Arts – Performance Making course; it’s still fairly new but its reputation is growing very quickly. I was very fortunate to be in a class with some people who have gone on to do some great work in Perth and become amazing artists. Seeing people that you love and respect do so well is inspiring. What I liked about the course itself was that it allowed you to find your path and discover your practice if you were willing to put the work in.

S: Describe your artistic practice…
LS: My focus, right now, is primarily on making work in the genre of clowning, mime and physical comedy – theatre that young people can enjoy but can also be appreciated by a mature audience.

S: Career highlight so far?
LS: I wouldn’t like to say I have one yet. I like to enjoy my success but also don’t like to rest on my laurels. I want to keep learning and getting better in my practice.

S: Career lowlight?
LS: Also don’t like to think about that. I think to do so can be crippling. Anything that can be considered a lowlight should be looked at as a learning experience and something to look forward from.

S: What do you love most about what you do?
LS: Performing. It is such a rare opportunity to do it. We spend so much time making and working on a show yet we may only get to spend a couple of hours on stage actually performing. It should be cherished, no matter how the performance ends up.

S: This isn’t your first time performing at Fringe World. What drew you back? 
LS: The piece that I’ll be presenting this year was developed from work I presented two years ago as a part of The Blue Room Theatre’s “600 Seconds” program. I decided the genre of clowning and physical comedy was something I wanted to develop into a full length stage show. And here we are!

S: Tell us about The Big City
LS: The Big City follows Joe the Clown as he ventures into an unknown urban terrain in search of theatrical stardom. At the same time he hopes to reconnect with a long lost friend who did what he is attempting a few years earlier. As with my previous clowning work, I have taken inspiration from the stars of the silent film era, such as Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin. I was also inspired by a little-known Martin Scorsese film called After Hours, in which the protagonist faces innumerable obstacles in his journey just to make it home from work.

S: Aside from your show, what are you looking forward to seeing/doing at Fringe?
LS: Feminah Anything by Charlotte Otton is worth checking out.

Front  Featuring an exceptionally talented cast.

F**K Decaf – Looks really interesting and is performed on the beautiful Alex Hotel rooftop.

Poorly Drawn Shark Will be wild.

Dad a touching, funny show by recent WAAPA Performance Making grads.

S: What’s your favourite part of the playground?
LS: One of those really high, curly slides that felt like they went forever when you were a kid.

The Big City plays The Blue Room Theatre Summer Nights, 18-20 January.

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LA SOIREE 2019
Cabaret, Calendar, February 19, Fringe World, March 19, Performing arts

Cabaret: LA SOIREE 2019

17 Jan – 3 Mar @ The Ice Cream Factory ·
Presented by LA SOIREE Australia ·

LA SOIRÉE 2019

Perth’s favourite show is back! After three sellout Fringe World seasons, LA SOIRÉE returns – reimagined, bigger and bolder than ever! The trailblazing, multi-award-winning show that broke all the rules, captured the world’s imagination and redefined contemporary cabaret takes up residence this summer at the iconic Ice Cream Factory. Joyous, celebratory, jaw-dropping and downright unmissable, LA SOIRÉE 2019 returns with another astonishing and wildly entertaining line-up.

CABARET DÉCADANSE – sassy and hilarious puppeteers from Montreal
MALLAKHAMB INDIA – spectacular Indian pole duo from Mumbai
WILL MEAGER – debuting the huge Cyr Wheel on the little round red stage
FRATELLI ROSSI – brothers Alejandro and Ricardo Rossi with unique
Icarian Games act
LUCKY HELL – high glamour Perth-born superstar sword swallower
BEN LEWIS – sexy aerial straps
LILY MARTINEZ – with her infamous red hanky act
CARLA LIPPIS – fierce singer with her own brand of rock ‘n’ roll swagger
WILL UNDERWOOD – stunning and powerful Chinese pole routine
IRINA BESSONOVA & VLADIMIR TODORASHKO – dynamic Ukrainian circus duo
skilled in trapeze, high wire walking and a unique hand-to-hand performance
And there’s more to come! Will sell out!

★★★★★ “The Greatest Show in Perth” – The West Australian (2016)

★★★★★ “If you’ve seen this show before, go again. Always sensational” –
Out in Perth (2017)

January 17-20, 22-27, 29-31. February 1-3, 5-10, 12-17, 19-24,
26-28 and March 1-3 at various times.
Please note on Sat 26 Jan there is a Special Post-Fireworks Australia
Day Show at 9.30pm

www.la-soiree.com/
www.twitter.com/lasoireelive
www.instagram.com/lasoireelive
www.youtube.com/user/LaSoireeLive
www.facebook.com/LaSoiree
www.youtube.com/user/OfficialLaSoiree
www.pinterest.com/lasoireelive

More info
W: www.bit.ly/2PG9y54
E:  enquiries@la-soiree.com

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