November 15th, 2006

Does My Bomb Look Big In This?

Review: Camille - La Fille du Cirque

Last night we ventured out again, to the opening night of Camille - La Fille du Cirque at The Studio. Knowing little about this Irish cabaret singer, except that she toured up until recently with The Famous Spiegeltent, I wasn't sure what to expect.

What I saw amazed me. Not only does Camille have the sexiest voice - sweet as an angel in parts, and raspy like whisky and cigarettes in others - she unravels as the show progresses. Starting as a 1930s femme fatale, her hair is neatly coiled in a chignon, her dress is satin, her coat is fashioned from velvet and oozes mystery. She even wears a corset under her dress for that perfect line, though funnily enough, she doesn't feel the need to strip off to it ("It's not THAT sort of show"). And frankly she's right not to - her voice is mesmerising enough!

The places where her sheer talent shows through the most are as she 'changes masks', and 'goes there', completely and wholeheartedly for each song. Heard to mutter: "Thank God that's over" after an arduous journey into war in a Jacques Brel song, she shows you that she's there by tears, a shaking hand & singing that is rich with emotion. Sometimes it's hard to remember that she hasn't actually BEEN the 'next' undistinguishable soldier in the production line of war. In fact I have rarely seen anyone do another artist's work with such passion.

As the show progresses, her appearance changes with it - out of the restrictive corsetry, and down with the still-damp hair, she presents on the stage as a slightly vampish wench in a red dress, her brassiere showing, her hair tangling on her face. In a sense this makes her even more accessible, and it is in this outfit that she does the two songs I liked the best - a song about being imprisoned for a crime you didn't commit, by Nick Cave; & of course her number by David Bowie, where she outsang Bowie himself.

There was also a hauntingly beautiful song that I think was called 'Look Mummy No Hands' which made me wish that
ms_victoria was there with us to see this show. In fact, the whole drunken cabaret whore sensibility, is one I think you'd really enjoy.

Superbly paced and constructed, if you like cabaret, then this show is an absolute must-see.

Tuesday 14 - Saturday 18 November at 9.30pm
Friday 17 November at 11pm

Adult $35
*Concession $25


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