Write because you want to, not because you have to.
Overall rating: ★★★★ Date attended: 21/02/2019
A drag star on a mission to share her journey around identifying and coming to terms with her unique sense of individuality and gender identification, Cazeleon (like 'chameleon') is a performer whose ability to morph into a star is almost natural. Her show is dotted with a selection of segments and scenarios that hope to mirror the struggles around gender fluidity and present with a raw and emotional narrative around the social construct of gender. Offering appealing factors such as cabaret, theatre, and song into her show, Cazeleon presents with a heartfelt performance that takes us on a wild ride, as we watch how a young child tries to fit within the often restricted societal standards of a stereotypical picture of a boy.
Aptly named "The Movies in my Mind", Cazeleon treats us to segments around how they wish they see their life panning out - first, by using a silent film to describe how he had to prove his boyhood and instead, being shoved away for not ticking the boxes of what's socially acceptable. No words are needed to describe how painfully frustrating this part was because you could sense the hopes and aspirations of young 'Caz', who ends up feeling neglected and overlooked. We then move on to another segment, which showcases the ideal life of Cazeleon - by abandoning everything that is there to know about Caz and instead, reach for the stars in Hollywood and becoming a free, independent individual, who is able to fully embrace their style, their thinking, and their talent. We see Cazeleon's steps towards success as a bearded singer and actress and the perils of fame that lead her to the bottomless pit.
A particularly memorable part of the show was the reverse recording that shows the transformation to and from Cazeleon. The topic of gender fluidity is not discussed as much as it should be and if anything was to go by the video, it gives us a raw and real snapshot of the daily struggles endured by those who don't feel like they are a part of the society, simply because they don't fit the typical context.
Throughout the show, the audiences are treated to the powerhouse vocals possessed by this beautiful creature, while she rocks killer heels, envious makeup, and an overall glam aesthetic with her tasty choice in costumes. With her ability to work in some strong facial expressions, coupled with a solid voice that easily does justice to the likes of Shirley Bassey, Nancy Sinatra and Duke Dumont (to name a few), Cazeleon is able to make us in the audience see the different emotions that she has been living with, all her life.
There are moments of vulnerability, sadness, helplessness. There are moments of triumph, glamour, and substance. It's a whirlwind of a show that demonstrates the struggles and dreams of those who feel trapped in a corner, with no way out. Through the power of cabaret and theatre, Cazeleon is able to deliver an empowering message around acceptance and self-exploration by offering scenarios where breaking down barriers and boundaries can unleash something powerful, inspiring, and downright important. It is a brilliant take on stepping out of your comfort zone and acknowledging who you are and how it doesn't necessarily need to make others feel comfortable, as long as YOU are comfortable with the idea of who you are - because you were (quoting Lady Gaga) Born This Way!
Cazeleon will be performing at the Empire Theatre in Gluttony, as part of Adelaide Fringe till February 24. Book your tix here.