A light-hearted and stylish musical celebration of the festive season.
John O’Hara, Gillian Cosgriff and Adrian Kroenert join together on stage for a cabaret performance to mark the end of the year and start the Christmas spirit flowing. Taking their inspiration from the smooth and debonair presentations of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra and Judy Garland, banter runs lightly through the show to leave big grins on faces of performers and audience alike.
The music is at the heart of this Christmas themed event, and the three consummate performers know how to structure and deliver a memorable show. O’Hara, Cosgriff and Kreonert each have distinct vocal strengths, and the combinations lead to pure magic. With Kroenert and Cosgriff taking turns at the piano, the jaunty medleys of wintertime joys, including Let it Snow, Frosty the Snowman and Winter Wonderland, allow us to visit many traditional favourites in a whistle stop tour along memory lane. As Christmas in Perth does not come with much snow, so words are tweaked to create a “Perthmas” carol featuring references to London Court, the Fremantle Doctor and the Dome chain of cafes to much merriment. More universally festive but modern moments come in a medley of Christmas songs, featuring Happy Xmas (War is Over), Last Christmas and All I Want for Christmas is You, bringing another kind of nostalgia into the mix. A change of pace happens when the trio go “Full Christmas” with a capella delivery of favourite traditional carols, The First Noel and Away in a Manger among them, the gentle harmonies a powerful contrast to the jaunty cleverness of more modern offerings.
Highlights of the night include Kroenert’s solo with guitar of The Little Drummer Boy, where the gradually building intensity in his delivery wipes all memories of canned carols in shopping centres as his voice and sparse accompaniment bring the spirit of adoration and open giving to the show. O’Hara starts his solo rendition of O Holy Night in a comic vein, but as Cosgriff takes his sleighbells from him the beauty of the carol is taken up by his considerable vocal talents to transport us through years of memories and back to the moment where his liquid notes are bringing tears to the eye. Cosgriff brings us her Silent Night that veers away from classical sweetness to be heartfelt, direct and touching in its simplicity.
While many people in the audience have been singing along quietly, especially with some of the traditional carols, no Christmas show would be complete without a full-blown singalong. The Twelve Days of Christmas moves around the room, table by table, with topical references to Tinder, selfies, crossfit, botox, hipsters, Netflix, AFL players and more crowding in to a well-paced romp leaving participants in fits of laughter.
The whole night of A Very Merry Christmas Cabaret runs on high energy, exquisite timing, great song selection and a delightful rapport between three talented performers in a fabulous celebration of Christmas, hitting all the best notes for sold out audiences.
Perth Theatre Trust presents
A Very Merry Christmas Cabaret
Venue: Downstairs at The Maj | 825 Hay Street Perth WA
Dates: 15 – 17 December 2016