Celebrating its first decade!

The Melbourne Cabaret Festival celebrates its first decade with cabaret fun at Chapel Off Chapel from Wednesday 19 until Sunday 30 June 2019. Launching new shows and award-winning performers, the Melbourne Cabaret Festival offers some of the best cabaret in Australia. Leading cabaret artists Drew Downing and Sally Bourne are the 2019 Melbourne Cabaret Festival Ambassadors.

Highlights include:

Damon Smith presents a preposterously zany musical adventure from the birth of the piano in 1709 through to the 20th century. With absurd, improvised humour, musical wizardry and incredible stories about the piano and its players acclaimed writer & pianist, Damon Smith (Sun Rising) will perform virtuosic piano tinkering in homage to some of the great musicians that have ‘tickled the ivories’ throughout the ages. The show features music and stories from Liberace, Jerry Lee Lewis, Winifred Atwell, Scott Joplin, Dr John, Mozart, Beethoven, Harry Connick Jr, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, Elton John and so many more.

Creatures of the Deep is a documentary style cabaret set under the sea. With the help of our Jacques Cousteau-esque narrator you will be taken on a journey beneath the surface to meet a plethora of beautiful, wild sea creatures who are given a voice to share their unique perspective beneath the waves.  Winner Best Cabaret Melbourne Fringe.

Emma Dean has drawn many songs together to make a magical mix tape of broken romantic memories, with each song a unique story told through the bizarre and enchanting lens of this self-confessed “Fucking Unicorn”. A smash hit at the 2018 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Emma and her Broken Romantics band (including physical theatre performer Jamie Kendall), will delight you with a glittering explosion of music and mischief.  Featuring original music, captivating storytelling and well-known songs by Sia, Foo Fighters and more.

Prepare for a night of 90s bangers and nostalgia with cabaret rockstar Drew Downing and his infamous stage band.  During high school it was all about Saturday morning Video Hits and the Dawson’s Creek soundtrack for Drew. 20 years later it still is. Drew will be performing songs by Macy Gray, Backstreet Boys, Spin Doctors, Spin Doctors, Joshua Kadison, Hanson, Deep Blue Something, Shania Twain and more.

Nefertiti LaNegra was born in a small town in the middle of nowhere and by golly it has taken a lot to get her here - to 2019, to the big city. There have been ups – and an occasional down – so let her take you on a ride as she waxes poetic about growing up a queen amongst those who did not see her glory. Love letters, sex, race, gender, popular song, and dance all collide in this poetic spectacle. When thinking about drag everyone expects a Judy Garland but no one expects a Serena Williams – and that’s where Nefertiti fills the gap!

Sam Phillips formed Sun Records in 1950 in Memphis where he discovered and recorded the likes of BB King, Howlin’ Wolf, Roscoe Gordon, Little Walter & Ike Turner. At the time there were no labels that would record and promote black music to the general American public. Sam did so with great enthusiasm and he soon realised that if he could find a white boy that could sing the blues it would open doors for Sun Records and make him rich. Enter Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash, taking the black man’s blues to white kids. Performed by an all-star Melbourne blues band.

Award winning, international jazz chanteuse Fem Belling brings to life the rare and racy songs of the early decades. With the churning whirr of Jake Mason (Cooking On 3 Burners) at the organ and Belling’s breathtaking vocal prowess, this show opens a door to a truth of music deeply rooted in human history often neglected on the jukebox. Belling will fire up songs that weren’t afraid of speaking out about the birds and the bees during a time where dudes could be prudes but women couldn’t spit their venom. 

The Melbourne Cabaret Festival is made possible through the generous support of the City of Stonnington, the Ron and Margaret Dobell Foundation and Quest on St Kilda Road.

Melbourne Cabaret Festival from Wednesday 19 until Sunday 30 June 2019, Chapel Off Chapel, 12 Little Chapel St, Prahran.  Bookings:

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