I am a writer living in Melbourne who loves to devour culture and the arts. Visit me at www.pumptheatre.com.au
Pursuing your passion in a life of continual interruptions
Jodie Stubbs delivers a dynamic performance in her self-written cabaret - Woman - It's a Mother of a Cabaret, on now at the Butterfly Club until 14 July. Book your tickets here.
Jodie Stubbs in 'WOMAN'
This show is an honest account of how women juggle motherhood and working, and still try to pursue a passion - for Jodie that is to sing and perform cabaret. However, Jodie's dream is constantly interrupted, by having to deal with the everyday tasks, feeling guilty, and needing to explain herself, or deny her angst and bitterness about 'not having it all'. It's a common story.
What isn't common is Jodie Stubbs impeccable voice with the versatility to sing pop to jazz, to Broadway and dance without missing a beat. At one stage, she also throws in some 1920's tap dancing and a few Charleston moves.
Jodie steps the audience through women's history from the story of Eve's betrayal in the Garden of Eden to 1922, when women were first given the vote in North Carolina. She then takes us through each decade of the 1900's with some historical facts about women with matching songs.
The audience really loved Jodie's take on the 1950's, with her readings from 'The Good Wife's Guide'. Although the audience laughed along to this Stepford Wife come Mad Men interpretation, some women in the audience expressed that their husbands still believe in those ideals.
Mid-performance, Jodie receives a call from her babysitter, who cancels her shift, on the opening night of her show. Mid-flight Jodie arranges a babysitter from 'Dial-An-Angel' to assist and continues with the show. These and other interruptions are no surprise to parents in the audience - but we feel disappointed that every time Jodie starts to sing, she is interrupted, by another phone call - reality biting the modern mother.
Jodie launches into the 1960s women's liberation movement with the Etta James version of 'I Just Wanna Make Love to You', and takes 'I'm Not Complaining' by Ella Fitzgerald to town.
Suddenly her babysitter arrives with her children and Jodie leaves the stage, and charges her accompanist David Butler with singing Helen Reddy's 'I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar' whilst Jodie attends to her daughters and the exhausted babysitter.
'Woman - It's a Mother of a Cabaret'
There were times when the audience was suspended by Jodie's voice, especially when she sang 'Baby Mine' made famous by Bette Midler in the classic 1980's movie 'Beaches' and ''I'm Here' by Stephen Sondheim.
The hands-down favourite of the night was Concrete Blonde's 'What's Up' with an audience sing-a-long of the chorus throughout the show.
'Don't Stop' by Fleetwood Mac made an appearance, and a unique version of Madonna's 'Material Girl', with a very strong encore of 'Respect' by Aretha Franklin.
I look forward to Jodie's next show where she can sing continuously, without interruption, as her talent should not be wasted. She is woman, hear her roar!