Tuesday, April 12, 2016

MICF- Celia Pacquola and Velvet

I've been to a lot of shows over the course of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, and the past two evenings have been my final ones for this year. On Monday night I went to see Celia Pacquola in The Looking Glass at the Comedy Theatre. Celia is a veteran of MICF and has branched out into acting with the comedy Utopia and drama The Beautiful Lie on the ABC. However, she joked that if someone as messed up as her can have that kind of success, imagine what a person with their life together could do. Celia's show mainly covered her being a single woman, love for beer, visits to a cat cafe, and a hilarious hate read of a passage from Miranda Kerr's book "Treasure Yourself." The ending was a very funny throwback to a story from the start of the show.

Tonight I headed down to the Malthouse Theatre for the disco cabaret show Velvet. The room was pumping from the start with DJ Joe Accaria playing music to get people in the mood. The show is set in a Studio 54-esque nightclub as a young conservatively dressed man (Brendan Maclean) wanders in and is intrigued by who he encounters. The cast is a hugely talented group that includes an acrobat, aerialist, hula boy, muscle man, two female backup singers and the legendary Marcia Hines.

Each member of the cast had their own moment to shine, with hula boy Craig Reid a real stand out. Marcia Hines nailed her vocals, but my favorite moment was Brendan Maclean's touching stripped back version of "Stayin' Alive" on ukulele. By the end of the show Maclean's character has transformed and is dancing around in a sequin jumpsuit with large feather collar. Velvet is a fantastic and entertaining show that will literally have you grooving even after it is finished - it's the only show I've ever been to where the audience stuck around to dance.

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