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What's on: Cabaret picks, Fleurieu art, The Whitlams


InDaily’s hit list of events and shows over the weekend and week ahead, including Adelaide Cabaret Festival highlights, a Francophile’s delight at Nexus Arts, Fleurieu Biennale art exhibitions, and a stripped-back gig by The Whitlams at The Gov.

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Kate Leigh – The Worst Woman in Sydney

Accompanied by a band with a “sexy jazz vibe”, Adelaide singer Libby O’Donovan (above) will seek to conjure a “1920s backyard smoky den of crime and good times” in her new show about infamous Sydney crime matriarch Kate Leigh. Debuting at the Space Theatre this weekend as part of the Cabaret Festival, it will weave Leigh’s story around songs inspired by aspects of her life – from her romances and role as a single mum, to her criminal connections and sly grog business. Read InDaily’s interview with O’Donovan here.

Yma Sumac – The Peruvian Songbird

“The Peruvian queen of exotica music reigns again as the charming and virtuosic opera singer Ali McGregor brings a forgotten star back to life,” InDaily reviewer Katherine Arguile writes of what she says is an unforgettable Cabaret Festival show. McGregor herself describes it as a “passion project” fuelled by her fascination with the 1950s star Yma Sumac. The show, at the Dunstan Playhouse until Saturday, shares stories from Sumac’s amazing life alongside her songs.

Them There Eyes

Four Australian musicians – jazz vocalist Emma Pask, looping artist Adam Page, singer Jamie MacDowell and beatboxer Tom Thum (pictured above) – will join forces for this Cab Fest show which explores the 2018 festival theme “eyes open”. Being presented tomorrow and Sunday on the Festival Theatre Stage, Them There Eyes is described in the festival program as a “brave, adventurous and incredibly conceptual” show which will feature a selection of standards and original music that explore the performers’ talents.

Fleurieu Biennale Art Prize

With the winner of the Fleurieu Biennale (previously the Fleurieu Art Prize) to be announced tomorrow, the exhibition of finalists’ work opens this weekend across three spaces – Stump Hill Gallery and Fleurieu Arthouse in McLaren Vale and Signal Point Gallery in Goolwa – after moving back to its original home on the Fleurieu Peninsula. This year, artists responded to the theme A Sense of Place, creating work across a range of disciplines. The exhibition continues until July 22. 

The Whitlams

The Whitlams will play at The Governor Hindmarsh tonight and tomorrow night as part of their 25th anniversary tour. Unlike their early anniversary concerts in which they performed in front of 60-piece orchestras, this will be a stripped-back show with the four-piece band performing tracks spanning across their six albums. It’s hyped as a “sprawling and rambunctious” set featuring fellow ’90s musicians Alex Lloyd and Deborah Conway as special guests.

Cabaret Fringe

Local Francophile theatre group Panache will put on a light-hearted evening of French entertainment at Nexus Arts this weekend as part of the Cabaret Fringe. Inspired by the traditions of the Parisian Left Bank café-théâtre, the French is in the Air show will comprise French comedy routines and song. Other festival highlights this weekend include Tomás Ford: Crap Music Rave Party (that’s Ford pictured above), a dance show inspired by the aerobics rave parties of the 1980s; Molly’s Game and Movie Night, which features classic drag cabaret, drag queen bingo and comedy; and Cross Legged, a cabaret show that tells the story of a pessimist confined to a wheelchair. Cabaret Fringe continues until June 24 – view the full program here.

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