Tag: drag show

Review: DIXIE LONGATE in My Bags Went Where?

Time flies with Dixie

By Bradley Storer

Dixie Longate

Rushing onstage, suitcase trolley in grip, the harangued Dixie Longate enthusiastically waved to the audience at her Melbourne International Comedy Festival show. This drag-diva cousin of Dolly Parton chattered a mile a minute about the horrible flight and how the rest of her luggage ended up in a trailer park in Frankston, while unpacking her signature stocks of Tupperware.

About halfway through Dixie remarked on how her southern accent often makes her rapid chatter unintelligible – she vowed to slow down, but unfortunately the pace of this opening monologue was sometimes so fast I couldn’t understand what she was saying (she used this later in the show deliberately to more comedic effect). The jokes in this first part came hard and fast, but none could seem to land and raise the audience above a quick chuckle, which left me slightly worried.

However, once Dixie got through her opening section and unleashed herself onto the audience the show began to really fly. She eagerly interacted with audience members, and ingeniously used comments from the audience to jump from random tangent to tangent so quickly it was hilariously mindboggling, whether it be bottling lesbianism as a cure for ADD to how gay app Grindr was affecting the war in Iraq.

The disappointingly small audience actually helped make the evening far more intimate in the big venue, as though we were all actually a group of friends gathering to hear Dixie’s outrageous tales. And what a collection of tales they are! Using a shocking fact about Sarah Palin as a jumping off point, Dixie spins anecdotes all related to her world travels as part of her business. The good-hearted and foul-mouthed woman simply has the gift of the gab, relating her experiences on stealing kidneys in Vegas, multi-racial Nativity scenes and how hard it is to get a drink in Britain. She weaves convoluted and epic stories in such a way that they seem entirely spontaneous, and draws the thematic ties of all her tales so cleverly together into a conclusion that leaves you with an indelible grin. An uproarious hour with a woman so charming and witty that it becomes almost saddening to leave.

DATES: 28th March – 14th April

VENUE: Forum Theatre – Downstairs, Cnr Flinders & Russell St

TIME: 8:30pm (7:30 Sun)

TICKETS: Wed-Thurs & Sun $30, Fri & Sat $34, Conc (n/a Sat) $28, Group (8+, n/a Sat) $28, Laugh Pack (n/a Sat) $28, Tightarse Tue $28

BOOKING: www.ticketmaster.com.au or 1300 660 013, www.comedyfestival.com.au , Melbourne Town Hall Box Office or Forum Box Office.

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REVIEW: Candice McQueen is NASTY

A hot night and an hilarious show

By Jessica Cornish

Candice McQueen has ‘been a lotta places, seen a lotta faces, and fucked a lotta races.’

The immortal demi-god who watched the crucifixion of Christ and chilled with the ancient pharaohs of Egypt told the tale of her 90’s love affair to a packed opening night Butterfly Club crowd last week.

Nasty is a brand new work performed by Spanky (Candice McQueen). This tranny superstar previously worked in London’s famous Bistrotheque for seven years and was proud to present her new show at The Butterfly Club as part of the 2012 Midsummer Festival.

The Mister Sister (with a fluro-pink wig dangling over her shoulders, and a malfunctioning glittering false eyelash threatening to crush her right eye) kept her hot and sweaty audience laughing all night.

The opening rap was followed by a hilarious narrative of her secret birth in front of an array of silver baboons, since her mother with a fleeting Asian/Spanish accent was tragically dying of a melting heart, and was forced to hand the small child over to an African monkey to raise as his own.

Initially the show, Nasty, was equally quite hard to follow. Hilarious, certainly – however, it wasn’t clear where the show as a whole was going. Fifteen minutes into the piece we finally learn of her love for a man named River, and the show begins to explore their naughty nineties relationship of love, loss, love and loss once more.

In between Candice’s spoken monologues of her experiences with River were splashes of songs accompanied by her acoustic guitarist/ukele player, Kylie. With her long black hair, purple glasses and loose fitted t-shirt she sat quietly in the corner awaiting her moments to shine. Occasionally Kylie also provided harmonic vocal lines to Candice’s songs which lifted the musical pieces significantly. Their voices blended together beautifully, and gave the musical pieces a whole new energy and vibrancy.

Whilst the musical composition of Nasty was nonetheless fairly uninventive, the banter in between the numbers made up for the lack of musical genius. Stand-out moments were Candice proving that the lovable Jack from Titanic was in fact a gay lad unfairly manhandled by a frumpy and loud Rose, and her segments retelling the loss of River in a risqué night club where her famous Australian father was DJ’ing at the time. 

Finally the show did demonstrate to its audience that the only point of human life was for all of us to find love, be loved and love in return, proved to be a great night out, and the sweaty audience thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Nasty was part of the the Midsumma Festival at The Butterfly Club.

Dates: 31 Jan – 5 Feb

Times: Tue, Wed & Sun 8pm, Thu-Sat 9pm

REVIEW: Le Gateau Chocolat (UK)

His motto? “In drag, but not a drag!”

By Kim Edwards

On his opening night for this year’s Melbourne Cabaret Festival, UK cabaret sensation and star of La Clique Le Gateau Chocolat got a standing ovation from his wolf-whistling, foot-stamping and highly delighted audience.

Even the demure middle-aged lady to whom he had given the vigorous and pelvis-thrusting lap dance, the young guy who had earlier made the ‘wrong’ choice of dance over song, and the poor straight man he’d made joyous fun off in the front row were on their feet applauding until their hands were sore.

Melbourne announced emphatically that they loved this plump, pleasurable  and piquant performer, and with his grandiose voice and outlandish personality, there is certainly plenty in this performance to enjoy.

Le Gateau Chocolat is everything that’s fabulous about drag, but with his revealing one-piece lycra suit, his beard surmounted by spectacularly beautiful makeup and luscious lashes, and his rich and rumbling bass-baritone voice, this diva is not at all about female impersonation.

His performance, like his ridiculous and glorious wardrobe, is shameless in calling attention to anything and showing off everything. The show exploits all the classic cabaret diva cliches, and his relentless showtune song list is an exemplar of everything cabaret performers should normally avoid – but the wonderful charm of his outrageous character and the fabulous musical arrangements that showcase his beefy and beautiful baritone sound were triumphant crowd-pleasers.

Accompanied by an excellent pianist and cellist, and starring alongside his beloved costume rail Bruce and over-sized suitcases of lycra, Gateau is all dolled up to feed your showtune cabaret and sugary chocolate addictions.

Le Gateau Chocolat’s final solo show is tonight 23 July at 8.30pm in the Grand Hall of South Melbourne Town Hall, but you can also have your cake and hear him too tomorrow night for the festival’s Big Gay Cabaret Sunday Finale! See www.melbournecabaret.com for the details…