SCF2010: Princess Cabaret

Poster for Princess Cabaret

Tumble Weed Productions

Parade Studio, Parade Theatres Tue 27 Apr – Sat 1 May @ 9:15

Seven wickedly funny young women stomp on the romantic fables of the Disney princesses, unmasking the many sordid realities that have been glossed over by those artful animators of the Mouse kingdom.

The performers cut their production teeth as an ensemble in university revues, and this shows, although what also shows is that they each have spent years mastering their performance skills – their personal talents and technical proficiencies lift them far above the usual level of revue alumni. Spending most of their time performing in various comedy, musical and impro shows when not working together, their ensemble work has an appealing freshness that belies its sharply precise musicality.

As a bunch of over-educated blue-stockings, they also had great fun in playing with romantic tropes and subverting them mercilessly, setting up the audience with so many familiar scenes and then undercutting their expectations with brutal matter-of-fact practicalities. The challenging social attitudes of the awoken Sleeping Beauty in the 21st century were a special highlight.

I took my whole family to see this show, knowing that my daughter especially was keen to see some myth-demolition, and thinking that my 15+ teens could cope with the advertised “high-level coarse language and adult themes”. They did cope, but they also blushed a few more times than they really expected to. Never mind, if they hadn’t been laughing so hard the blushes wouldn’t have been so bright!

the cast of Princess Cabaret in costumeNo wonder they were such a hit last year at the Edinburgh Fringe, and just about everywhere else they’ve taken the show. Highly recommended.
Cast: writer-director Brydie Lee-Kennedy as Ariel, musician Sophie Miller as Tinkerbell, Jo Bourke as Belle, Keira Daley as Aurora, Amy Louise Hume as Cinderella, Rebecca Saffir as Snow White and Elise Fabris as Jasmine.

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