wed 22/05/2024

cabaret

Bill Bailey: Thoughtifier, Brighton Centre review - offbeat adventures with a whirling, erudite mind

I first saw Bill Bailey at least 30 years ago in the cabaret tent at Glastonbury Festival, the audience lying on hessian matting, a fug of hash smoke in the air. He seemed one of us, a bug-eyed, Tolkien-prog hippy with a stoned sense of humour and...

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Fascinating Aida, London Palladium review - celebrating 40 glorious years of filth and defiance

You don’t expect a couple of septuagenarian contraltos, aided by a spring chicken of a soprano in her fifties, to sing naughty ditties about jacksies and titties. Then again, if you are a Fascinating Aida fan, you do. Thousands of fans turned...

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Reuben Kaye, Purcell Room review - Australian gives powerhouse performance

As the panto season is in full swing, theatregoers will be expecting to hear some smut. For those who don't like the traditional artform but still like a bit of filth – with songs – then Reuben Kaye's The Butch Is Back will do nicely.It's a...

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1984, Hackney Town Hall review - Room 101 shapeshifts into 2023, but remains as terrifyingly plausible as ever

The day after I saw the show, as went about the mundanities of domestic life, I wondered how long it would take to come across a reference to 1984. My best bet was listening to an LBC phone-in concerning next week’s conference at Bletchley Park on...

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La Cage Aux Folles, Regent's Park Open Air Theatre review - 40 years on, the drag show still entertains and educates

Forty years ago, the world was very different for gay men. AIDS was devastating their communities, especially in the big cities where hard-won enclaves of acceptance were being hollowed out, one sunken-eyed friend after another. Media screamed “Gay...

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Edinburgh Fringe 2023 reviews: Flat & the Curves / Shamilton! / I Wish My Life Were Like a Musical

Flat & the Curves, Pleasance Dome ★★★★Flat & the Curves – Katy Baker, Charlotte Brooke, Issy Wroe Wright and Arabella Rodrigo – perform a gig-style musical comedy show with risqué material about what it means to be a modern woman. And...

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Modest, Kiln Theatre review - tale of Victorian would-be trailblazer fails and succeeds

Whether you believe that Ellen Brammar’s play, Modest, newly arrived in London from Hull Truck Theatre, succeeds or not, rather depends on your criteria for evaluating theatre. On storytelling, character development and nuance, it is two and a half...

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Sound of the Underground, Royal Court review - loud and triumphantly proud

Ever been to a queer club? You know, drag cabaret night at Madame Jojo’s, or the Black Cap or Her Upstairs. No? Well, not to worry – the Royal Court’s latest provides a fabulously extravagant simulation of the experience with its staging of Sound of...

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Only an Octave Apart, Wilton's Music Hall review - instant charm, infinite variety

You know you’re in good company the minute these two appear on stage: they are so splendidly what they are, comfortable in their own skins and perfect in role-play. Justin Vivian Bond, consummate trans cabaret artist, meets Anthony Roth Constanzo,...

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Wonderville Magic and Cabaret review - fast-paced show delivers the promised wonder

There’s nothing quite like magic, live, up close and personal. Sure there are the TV spectaculars, the casino resort mega-shows and even The Masked Magician to pull back the curtains, but there’s a frisson in the air when the card that’s in your...

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The Tiger Lillies' Christmas Carol: A Victorian Gutter, Southbank Centre review - cult band get inside Scrooge's head

Charles Dickens and Martyn Jacques is a marriage made in heaven (well, hell I suppose): the Victorian novelist touring the rookeries of Clerkenwell the better to fire his imagination and, 150 years or so later, the post-punk maestro mining London's...

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Christine Rice, Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall review - songs of love and death

It began as a Christmas present in the bleakest of winters. In December 1939, as war engulfed Europe, Bertolt Brecht sent a poem to the exiled Kurt Weill in New York. Weill set it as a bittersweet gift for his wife Lotte Lenya. “Nannas Lied” – the...

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