Adelaide, Adelaide Fringe 2015

Blues and Burlesque – Hotter Than Hell, Adelaide Fringe Festival 2015

0 Comments 22 February 2015

The 2014 Adelaide Fringe was noticeably approving of nudity, from magicians, reading girls, to more risqué comedy, and it has followed up this year with a more robust programme of burlesque. For a more creative approach to disrobing La Boheme is the perfect venue with three burlesque companies taking up residence to entice audiences. Hotter Than Hell presented by Blues and Burlesque is a classic cabaret recipe of music and tease that balances aggressive sexuality with cheeky banter. This show is not aiming for classy, it is intimate and exuberant but by burlesque standards quite tame.

This is a great show for virgins to burlesque: it’s engaging and, uh, hands on without pushing the boundaries. Pianist Pete Saunders, and performers Vicious Delicious and Scarlett Belle handle the audience with ease, playing up the venomous rivalry between the young beauty and bitter grande dame. Some opening numbers struggled to build up momentum but by the end the performers had the crowd in the palms of their hands. The quality of the singing is a bit uneven, but all three performers belt it out and the intentionally rough front bar atmosphere and witty compère keep the performance moving even though (trigger warning) a couple of rape jokes fell inevitably flat. Nonetheless, the comedy was the most consistent part of the performance and was often edgier than the striptease.

Hotter Than Hell is a satisfying entrée, even though the main course never arrives. Blues and Burlesque are also presenting Happy Hour upstairs at La Boheme, which may offer some more titillating content. The thrills and costumes might be cheap and glitzy, but Vicious Delicious and Scarlett Belle certainly give it their all. This is a saucy and rollicking front bar show with a few obligatory diva moments that is sure to spice up an evening.

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