Write because you want to, not because you have to.
Overall rating: ★★★★1/2 Date attended: 24/02/2019
Having watched Jamie Mykaela perform as a supporting act over the past 2 Fringe seasons, it is so refreshing to see her have her own solo show for the first time. And what a cracker pot of fun it was, to see her opening show yesterday at the beautiful National Wine Centre!
Dressed like a femme queen in the making, from head to toe, Mykaela appeared on stage in a hot pink crop top, super cute shorts, and super trendy shoes that screamed quintessential Jamie.
Incorporating cabaret, comedy, and singing into her show, Mykaela was able to engage her audiences through relatable content, drawing from real life events and showcasing what it's like to be living life to the fullest (and bumping into some very unwanted yet too real obstacles along the way). There are tons of moments within the show that bring out a versatile range of emotions. Mykaela shows off her mischievous and whimsical side, through her experiences with the X Factor, how she became part of an unexpected viral sensation in Malaysia, and a chapter of her life that around 80% of us have probably thoroughly enjoyed (sarcasm intended) - high school. Using her ukulele, she creates melodious tunes that start off gentle, but build up momentum to become something incredibly powerful, witty, and just, simply put, fun!
Mykaela is a natural on stage, who is able to keep her audiences entertained through the art of storytelling with a comedic twist, sharing experiences, wearing her heart on her sleeve, and opening herself for the audiences to catch a glimpse of what it's like to live like a fierce femme artist in this dog-eat-dog world.
One of the reasons why I absolutely adore Mykaela is for her stunning voice! Give the woman a ukulele and it'll be the greatest thing to be in the same room as her. Mykaela can work the ukulele in a pleasing manner, producing tunes that are not only relaxing but also offer a meaningful insight into her world, through lyrics that were inspired by real-life experiences. Her songs can also take on a humorous twist, where she is able to present audiences with lyrics that are upbeat and have a high level of energetic coolness that will make you want to tap your toes from the fun rhythms created by the ukulele strings.
Through the fun and the playfulness throughout the show, Mykaela also incorporates important discussions around battling with anxiety. There is a particularly heavy segment during the show, which includes Mykaela offering us with a snippet of some of the instances where she's been sexually harassed / assaulted, whilst being on tour. While it is a depressing reality to listen to, it is just that - reality. The reality of living in a world where patriarchal oppression is still strong! This segment invoked a lot of tough emotions to deal with, but by having an open discussion about it and through the art of music, Mykaela was able to channel her frustrations brilliantly and break the stigma around a topic that is quite raw but unfortunately, still predominant in our society today. Post-show, Mykaela also accepts donations of any amount, which would go towards a charity organization in Perth that looks after and provides support to victims of domestic violence, so kudos to her for not only doing her part in helping women through these traumatic experiences, but also letting us chip in to do what little we can to ease the stress, when transitioning from a hostile environment to a caring and supportive one.
Finishing off her show with a bang, Mykaela invites audiences to throw ping pong balls at her and release all the anger that they may be feeling towards anything in their life... as a way to de-stress. And while it sounds vicious, audiences and Mykaela were jointly having the best time ever. Saving the best for last, Mykaela revels in all her glory, as she tastefully performs a striptease, revealing Swarovski-studded nipple pasties - safe to say, the audience heartily enjoyed her "if you got it, flaunt it" attitude!
Mykaela is a theatrically pleasing individual, who is able to engage and excite her audiences through her soulful singing, her unique sense of self-deprecating comedy style that anyone can relate to, and her fantastic cabaret queen-esque presence that demands nothing but respect. She is the future of cabaret fashion and her signature style adds to the exquisite performing arts skills possessed by Mykaela. Prepare to be on a drug-free psychedelic journey of appreciating your life through the challenges that it may throw your way and always embracing yourself for your excellent qualities and your individuality.
Jamie Mykaela: Napoleon Complex will be performing at the National Wine Centre, as part of Adelaide Fringe till March 6. Book your tix here.