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Cabaret Festival

Boobs 'n' all cabaret with Bridget Everett

Cabaret Festival

Outrageous New York singer and comedian Bridget Everett promises a wild night at her 2017 Adelaide Cabaret Festival show, warning audience members: ‘Be ready to leave your inhibitions at the door.’

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Everett – who was a late cancellation on last year’s festival program – is one of 58 international and 372 Australian artists (see highlights below) on the program announced yesterday by co-artistic directors Eddie Perfect and Ali McGregor.

A classically trained singer who has her own band and had carved out a successful comedy-cabaret career with her in-yer-face live solo performances, she has also appeared in TV shows such as Inside Amy Schumer (Everett and Schumer are friends) and Two Broke Girls, and the film Trainwreck.

In this R-rated Q&A from New York, Everett talks risque business and gives a hint of what to expect when her show Pound It! hits the Dunstan Playhouse on June 9 and 10.

You’ve been described by others as everything from brash and bawdy to raw and riotous – and, my personal favourite, “a face-sitting, dildo-wielding, alt-cabaret provocateur”. How do describe yourself and what you do?

It’s hard to beat that dildo description!

Is the off-stage Bridget as wild as the on-stage version?

Nooooo! I save all that for the stage. I have a dog (Poppy) that I’m madly in love with. When I’m not doing a show, you can usually catch me on the couch with a bottle of wine and my sweet Poppy.

Although you’re equally well known for your comedy, I’ve read that music is your driving passion – where did that love of singing come from?

My mom is a retired music teacher so I think it’s in my bones. My happiest memories from childhood are standing around the piano, everyone drunk and singing.

I knew I wanted to be a singer and studied classically in college. It wasn’t until I moved to NYC and saw what was happening in the clubs downtown that I found my true calling.

People like Murray Hill, Justin Vivian Bond and legendary drag queen Sweetie were outrageous, funny, wild and so full of life! They were boundary pushers that inspired me to push limits, follow my heart and be exactly who I am when I perform.

What are some of the songs you’ll be singing at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival?

It will be a wild night. I’ll be singing about love, drinking, sex, tits and more.

Pound It! is recommended for ages 16+, with coarse language and nudity … what are some of the most risqué elements of the show?

There can be the occasional boob that pops out. Don’t worry – it will be mine. And I love getting to know people in the audience.

I can’t tell you the MOST risque thing because it’s the climax of the show. Come in with an open mind, an open heart and be ready to leave your inhibitions at the door. Let’s have a night none of us will forget for the rest of our lives.

What’s your view on personal space – and should audience members come prepared for theirs to be invaded?

I love audience interaction, getting to know people up close and in person. I look for people who have something that looks like it’s trying to get out from inside of them. If someone looks terrified or nervous, I leave them alone to watch and process what’s happening without my help.

The 2017 Adelaide Cabaret Festival, with the theme The Tables Are Turning, will be held from June 9-24.

Other Cabaret Festival highlights include:

Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs: A one-man show by Tony Award-winning actor and singer Alan Cummings (Eli Gold on The Good Wife) mixing “intimate stories” with interpretations of pop songs and stage classics.

Ancient Rain: Australian singer-songwriter Paul Kelly and Irish-French singer Camille O’Sullivan star in this show which combines the spoken word with a song-cycle of new compositions inspired by the work of Yeats and other Irish poets.

Camille O'Sullivan and Paul Kelly. Photo: David James McCarthy.

Camille O’Sullivan and Paul Kelly. Photo: David James McCarthy.

Black – Le Gateau Chocolat: Familiar to Adelaide audiences from his Fringe performances, Le Gateau Chocolat will present what is described as an intimate and confessional show at the Cabaret Festival, with a repertoire ranging from Wagner to Nina Simone and Whitney Houston.

Le Gateau Chocolat in Black.

Le Gateau Chocolat in Black.

Dianne Reeves: A one-night-only, 90-minute show by the five-time Grammy-winning American jazz singer.

Singer Dianne Reeves. Photo: Jerris Madison

Singer Dianne Reeves. Photo: Jerris Madison

Lior & ASQ – Love, Loss and Compassion: The Australian String Quartet joins with Lior to present a program that includes some of his most popular songs, work from his forthcoming album, and a re-imagined version of “Sim Shalom” (Grant Peace) from the orchestral song cycle Compassion.

The Australian String Quartet. Photo: Jacqui Way

The Australian String Quartet. Photo: Jacqui Way

Tapestry – The Songs of Carol King: Vika Bull and Debra Byrne, backed by The Brill Band, re-imagine songs from Carol King’s best-selling album, Tapestry.

Bill Frisell ­– When You Wish Upon a Star: American jazz guitarist and composer Frisell will present a concert featuring interpretations of classic cinema tracks from his latest recording.

Bill Frisell.

Bill Frisell.

The Idea of North with Kaichiro Kitamura: Titled Groove Sessions, this show will see Australian a cappella ensemble The Idea of North join with Japanese beat-boxer Kitamura for what promises to be a “pitch-perfect performance without instruments”.

The Idea of North. Photo: Kurt Sneddon /Blueprint Studios

The Idea of North. Photo: Kurt Sneddon /Blueprint Studios

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