Starring Helen Cassidy, Imogen Kelly, Tiger Lil & Kellie Vella
New Council Chambers, Trades Hall
Wednesday, 25 April 2007

Phew! This is one show where you get tired from just watching it as there is so much on stage and moves so rapidly. I have seen quite a bit of burlesque around Melbourne, and this show definitely ranks as one of the better performances for quite a long time.

It is quite different to the still very good Burlesque Idol as the acts themselves are what move the show forward. Imogen Kelly even takes up the microphone at a couple of points in the show to act as an unofficial MC. Watching the performers fool around in the audience before the show was great also.

I had only seen Imogen Kelly perform once before in Sugartime's Absinth Club show earlier this year, so I was very interested in seeing some of her other work and that of the other people in the show. She has some very interesting routines, but I won't give away all of them, the highlights being the scary-looking aerial act and the Marie Antoinette inspired striptease with many pairs of knickers and doing the splits onto a cake.

Tiger Lil and Kellie Vella were also great, with the highlights of their performance being the mermaid and sailor act and Tiger Lil's angle-grinding finale. Kellie Vella also did a great aerial act, which looked very difficult as she had even less to hang onto than when Imogen did hers earlier in the show.

Last but not least, Helen Cassidy. She was my favourite performer in the show and not just because she gave me a balloon flower at the end of the night and got me to "kiss it better" during her act with the mop, but also because she was the butt off all the jokes of the other performers and handled it so well.

As I have said it was a very high-energy show and I advise not going to see anything straight afterwards as you will want to go say hello to the performers afterwards to sign their book and buy merchandise. If you are of a nervous disposition, I would advise against sitting in the front row as you are very close to the action and there are sparks, whip cracks, whipped cream and biscuits that may make it into the front row.

Tarnished runs until Sunday at Trades Hall. Hopefully it will return for another season during the Fringe later in the year or the ever-popular Spiegeltent as it really deserves a wider audience.

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Created on ... April 11, 2007