Melbourne, Australia

REVIEW: Mike Tsama in RISE OF THE MEMPHIS CAT

In Cabaret, Cabaret Review, Events, Performances, Whats On on May 25, 2012 at 6:00 am

Elvis is in the building!

By Christine Moffat

If you ever wondered what it was really like seeing Elvis Presley perform live way back when: before he was a star, before he went Hollywood, before the pills and the booze and the double-bacon-cheese-and-banana burgers, this show is your chance to find out! 

If you’re looking for that cool, truck-driving hunk of rough diamond that Sam Phillips and The Colonel were all shook up about, Mike Tsama is your man.  This 65-minute show takes you back to that time and that guy, with a faultless vocal performance by Tsama that manages to evoke a young Elvis without becoming a mere impersonation (a rare feat). 

Staged at the über-funky cabaret venue The Butterfly Club, the show is perhaps a little big for the room.  I believe this show calls for a big stage and a big, excited, Elvis-digging crowd.  That being said, if a smaller, more intimate (you know what I’m sayin’ Momma?) Elvis experience is what you’re after, this show at this venue is it. 

Although fewer costume changes and a couple less songs would have been preferable, if you go along for the ride this show will be a hell of a lot of fun for cats and kittens, so get clapping along early and you’ll have a ball.  As a concert experience, there is no real narrative or cabaret format, but this is not a kitch and cool outsiders’ show – it’s clearly for Elvis fans and soon-to-be Elvis fans of all ages. 

The combination of Tsama’s voice (which was pitch perfect) and his choice of some lesser-known songs as well as hits made me want to go home and play every Elvis song in my collection.  Oh, and if you’re craving a little extra special attention from The King, sit up and front and your wish might be granted…

Rise of the Memphis Cat

Written, produced & performed by: Mike Tsama

Featuring character voices: Steve McGrath, Meera Belle, David Watkins & Glen Schollum

Venue:  The Butterfly Club, 204 Bank Street, South Melbourne

Times: 7pm Thurs/Fri/Sat, 6pm Sun

Dates: Thurs 24th to Sun 27th May

Ticket prices: $23 Full, $20 Conc, $18 Groups 8+

Booking Details: www.thebutterflyclub.com

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