Review: EMMA CLAIR FORD in Butterscotch

“Fall down seven times, get up eight”

By Maxine Montgomery

The quotation is a good motto we should all take into life, and one that Emma Clair Ford has taken to heart in writing her latest solo cabaret work, Butterscotch.

At the top of the show, Ms Ford entered the show room of the Butterfly Club with a great deal of poise and a dash of mystery, silently stalking down the centre aisle towards the intimate stage.

With her entrance, she created a mood of intrigue and simplicity all at once. She gave away nothing and kept the audience fully engaged as she took us on a journey, on “an adventure within an adventure”.

Ms Ford has crafted a very clever and well-structured script, and at all times, she was in control of its pace and delivery. Her careful choice of words painted very vivid pictures of childhood memories, tales of an oft-broken heart, and time in foreign lands.

I very much enjoyed her repeated use of one scenario, presented in two entirely different veins, to bookend a climactic moment of the show.

The music Ms Ford has chosen throughout the cabaret is so well matched to the progression of the through line that the songs could have been purpose written for the show.  Myself, I will never again be able to listen to “Six Months in a Leaky Boat” in quite the same way!

Emma Clair’s voice is clear, well controlled, and most adaptable in handling the music of the show. Her versatility extends from a music theatre belt to a sweet, pure tone which she introduced as she sang “Vieni a mia diletto” (Come, my delight) – the song was a perfect choice as she told of her desire to visit Juliet’s famous balcony in Verona.

Butterscotch is a unique cabaret, expertly created and delivered. Ms Ford deserves every success as she takes this show across to the 2012 Adelaide Cabaret Fringe Festival this month.

The second and final Melbourne preview is on Wednesday February 22nd at 8pm at the Butterfly Club in South Melbourne, but look out for details of another Melbourne season later in the year.

For tickets, please visit http://thebutterflyclub.com

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