A Melbourne based writer who is a travel junkie, dedicated foodie and emerging photographer.
A morsel of mayhem, wrapped in a cabaret blanket
The Odditorium is billed as "a 60-minute cabaret (which) fuses traditional and unique performance mediums with modern twists and turns". Last night (opening night), it was more like a 90 minute performance - but certainly the rest was true. It was a performance jam-packed with action, surprises, and a sense of wonderment about what we were seeing and what would happen next.
There was also an 'on the edge of the seat' anticipation throughout about whether you'd be the next audience member to be called to the stage to (variously), play the bar chimes, compete in a dancing competition or inflate an oversized balloon. When they say it's an 'interactive' cabaret, they're not kidding!
Audience members help blow up a balloon (The Quizzical Mr Jeff to the left of the image)
The MC, Sophie deLightful, kicked things off in a - well - delightful way, quickly engaging the audience. Her warm, open style, and rich singing voice ensured she was a crowd pleaser.
Sophie deLightful - warm and engaging. (Pictured here with audience members engaged in a 'dance-off'.)
What followed was a series of acts by a talented cast. There was such a depth of talent and skills in this show, it was surprising it could be delivered by just five performers.
Mr Jeff performs a spellbinding illusionist act with glass balls
The Quizzical Mr Jeff and UK circus performer Nat Lunatrick performed some amazing hat juggling, and hat stand twirling, followed by Sophie deLightful performing Chris Isaak's Wicked Game, while aerialist Miss Amy May Rose twirled above her, dazzling us with her lyra (aerial hoop), and later, trapeze acts.
Miss Amy, aerialist (seen here on trapeze)
Mav took to the stage with a clever puppetry act (and more audience assistance). He's a highly skilled puppeteer, and the polished way in which he integrated the audience members into his act spoke to his experience and confidence as a performer.
The Quizzical Mr Jeff came back for some more of his amazing magic - this time with the hoops, and an oversized balloon.
Mr Jeff with the hoops
The cast received a foot stomping ovation at the end of the show, and they deserved it. I was sorry when the show finished, it had been such a fun ride!
There was audience acclaim for this thoroughly entertaining show. (Pictured here from left to right, Mr Jeff, Mav with puppet, Miss Amy)
Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable show that is funny and entertaining in equal parts. The barely controlled chaos of the audience participation give it an extra notch on the entertainment scale; which is not to take away from the performers themselves. It's to their credit they are prepared to risk the slight loss of control that occurs when an audience member mounts the stage, and it is a better show for it.
The Odditorium plays at Gasworks Arts Park, 21 Graham Street, Albert Park, at 9.30pm on 1st, 2nd, 7th, 8th and 9th February 2019.
Tickets are full - $32, concession - $28. Click here to buy your tickets online.
The performance time is (approximately) one hour. The Odditorium contains nudity, coarse language, strobe lights, smoke/haze effects and adult themes.
The images in this article were taken by the writer.