Cabaret de Paris

July 17, 2019

Brisbanites could be forgiven for thinking they were in Paris as all things French came to town. The Brisbane Eye was resplendent in red, white and blue, Le Cordon Bleu – Le Festival was in full swing serving pastries, croissants, crepes and cheese, as well as a good dose of French entertainment. Berets and Breton stripes were the order of the day, but for the She Society ladies it was to be a night of glitz, glamour and razzle dazzle Parisian style. We were about to see the stunning Cabaret de Paris featuring Can Can dancers, cabaret, magic and illusion, pole dancing and amazing synchronised dance pieces.

This production featured Australian born and trained Marissa Burgess, the longest serving principal performer in the Moulin Rouge’s 120 – year history. She sang and danced without missing a beat, showing why she has been called the ‘ toast of Paris’. Marissa was joined on stage by fellow Moulin Rouge star, proud Queenslander, Morgan Kenny, together with the crème de la crème of showgirls who have all graced the Moulin Rouge stage. 

I loved the mix of well loved classics and more modern songs. Highlights for me were ABBA’s ‘Voulez Vous’ and the hit ‘Parlez Vous Francais’ choreographed with rousing high energy dance sequences and the traditional Can Can dance which took us along at a frenetic pace into interval. Who could ever forget Don Draper’s embarrassment when his new wife performed a rendition of ‘Zou Bisou Bisou’ in front of friends at a party? Seeing this playful dance performed on stage was a real treat and showed that with these showgirls it was more about what was concealed rather than revealed. I have always wanted to see a fan dance and it was as magnificent as I had imagined, with oversized pink fans moving in time to the music.There were of course topless dancers, only two on stage at any one time, but all dancers were covered in the matinee.

The costumes were a delight with feathers, fishnets, fur and sequins lighting up the stage. Ornate headpieces were majestic works of art and just what you’d expect from a show of this calibre. Costume changes on stage were deft and quick and only enhanced the performance. I was in awe of the dancers athleticism, from both the males and females in the revue. Every move was a spectacle. The aerial work had you on the edge of your seat.

I was determined not to be distracted when magician Michael Boyd performed with his beautiful dancer assistants. I watched carefully but still couldn’t figure out the vanishing lady, the lady in the box, the levitating lady or any of his other tricks. It was a magnificent performance by this talented magician. Marissa also changed the pace and engaged us all with a hilarious dance performance with audience participation. She reinforced my view to never again sit in the front row.

Cabaret de Paris was a joyous celebration of the beauty of the art of the Paris showgirl. There was terrific music, amazing burlesque and dance routines and a host of other talented performers, including illusion and pole dancing. This show was a feast for the senses and was over far too quickly for me. It was a great night out and as I walked out into the Brisbane evening I smiled at the many French speakers still enjoying this chilly Brisbane night. All we needed was an Eiffel Tower, but I guess I need to head to Paris (or Milton) for that. 

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