Tales from a Cabaret

Chilling yet jovial, disconcerting and entertaining sophisticated cabaret satire

Article by Betty Lightbulb | 13 Aug 2011

At odds with their silent presence as they flyer the Royal Mile, the Creative Martyrs deliver Tales from a Cabaret through anecdotes and song. Obviously bewildering to some of their audience (expecting mime, perhaps), the Martyrs deliver songs about their time in Weimar-style cabaret shows. Hats anthropomorphises headwear as cabaret characters and weaves a chilling yet jovial melody as they move around the scattered viewers.

Utilising the cello, ukulele and kazoo with fabulous ease, the Martyrs expertly slip from instrumental to song to anecdote to quip to pointed gaze. The two of them alternately perform solo, while the other loiters in the audience until a moment of chorus is required. The physicality of their interaction is both buoyant and intimate, a sophisticated and clearly comfortable partnership.

Polite and yet intrusive, their satirical take on personal data collection, The List forms the crux of their audience interaction and its close-to-home nature is both disconcerting and superbly entertaining. White-faced, the Martyrs effectively use curled smiles, raised eyebrows and their suave bowler hats to simultaneously establish their power over their audience, and emphasise their place in the seedy cabaret world of old.

The Creative Martyrs Fingers Piano Bar, 3-28 Aug 2011, 9pm PBH Free Fringe www.creativemartyrs.com