InReview InReview

Support independent journalism

Adelaide Fringe

Review: An Evening With Annabel Crabb

Adelaide Fringe

What better way to spend Valentine’s Day than at an intimate dinner party with friends? Just me, Annabel Crabb, Leigh Sales, Adam Liaw, Christopher Pyne, Nick Xenophon and around 2000 other Fringe-goers. ★★★★★

Comments Print article

This sold-out event at the Festival Theatre certainly felt as familiar and intimate as dinner with old friends, with food, wine, great conversation and many laughs.

The stage was set beautifully as an open-plan kitchen and lounge where Crabb – political commentator, author and host of ABC’s Kitchen Cabinet – received her guests. For 90 minutes they casually chatted away over food preparations and a few South Australian sparkling reds.

Fans of Kitchen Cabinet, accurately described as “Australia’s only home-invasion-based political cooking show”, will appreciate Crabb’s relaxed and witty manner. Her quick wit and ability to ask the “big questions” with a friendly smile and a slice of dessert gives audiences a unique insight into the politicians who so often invade our lives in staged-managed appearances.

Current host of ABC’s 7:30, Leigh Sales, was first to arrive for this live show, getting in a sneaky show-tune on the piano before Crabb took to the stage. As the only interstate guest, Sales graciously took on the chin several Queensland-based digs.

Wonderfully warm and funny, she was the best friend who felt comfortable enough to refill glasses and hand around platters of food. The hilarious conversation between Sales and Crabb was a reminder that the powerhouse of political reporting in this country is in excellent hands.

Winner of the second series of television cooking show MasterChef, Adam Liaw, arrived soon after. Invited as “the only guest who can actually cook”, he whipped up “fancy fish finger sandwiches”, complete with cooking tips and an insight into his journey from being Walt Disney’s lawyer to a food broadcaster and cookbook writer.

While Liaw was busy in the kitchen, politicians Christopher Pyne and Nick Xenophon arrived with their “mystery desserts” which would later decide the fate of the seat of Sturt.

Regardless of your feelings about Pyne’s politics, the federal Industry Minister and current member for Sturt proved highly engaging. His hilarious anecdotes and the one-liners that created a slight air of tension between he and Xenophon induced tears of laughter in this reviewer.

Crabb is in her own class as a host and interviewer. She seamlessly guided the evening’s conversation, with her knowledge, wit and gorgeous personality making it all appear effortless.

Audiences were promised “an evening of conversation, intrigue, fun, food, song and surprises”, and it more than fulfilled expectations. We left the theatre with sore stomach muscles from laughing and a serious case of the warm-fuzzies that came from enjoying a night of great conversation with friends.

Five stars

An Evening with Annabel Crabb was performed for one night only at The Adelaide Festival Theatre as part of the Adelaide Fringe.


Make a comment View comment guidelines

Support local arts journalism

Your support will help us continue the important work of InReview in publishing free professional journalism that celebrates, interrogates and amplifies arts and culture in South Australia.

Donate Here


Show comments Hide comments
Will my comment be published? Read the guidelines.

. You are free to republish the text and graphics contained in this article online and in print, on the condition that you follow our republishing guidelines.

You must attribute the author and note prominently that the article was originally published by InReview.  You must also inlude a link to InReview. Please note that images are not generally included in this creative commons licence as in most cases we are not the copyright owner. However, if the image has an InReview photographer credit or is marked as “supplied”, you are free to republish it with the appropriate credits.

We recommend you set the canonical link of this content to to insure that your SEO is not penalised.

Copied to Clipboard

More Adelaide Fringe stories

Loading next article