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LILI LA SCALA – Pleasance Dome, Edinburgh.

afvsEdinburgh Fringe Festival is filled with all sorts of cabaret, burlesque and vaudeville-style events but self-diagnosed “Drag queen in the body of a straight woman” Lili La Scala brings together the best of the Fringe every night at the Pleasance Queen Dome…could there be a more apt location?

As a host, Lili offers the perfect amount of filth, humour and genuine enjoyment as she introduces each of her guests, whilst intermittently performing accompanied by her evening’s plaything, Tom Barnes on the piano. Opening the show she belts out a filthified cabaret version of The Beatles’ Come Together whilst working her way slowly around the audience, proving from the start, that she knows how to work a room. The highlight, however, was a beautiful adaptation of Alice Coopers Poison, which really showcased Miss La Scala’s vocal skill.

The night is made up with various guests, which change on a nightly basis, working as an opportunity to either showcase new work or to show off the host’s favourite people on the circuit. First up was ‘Forensic Mind-Reading’ Colin Cloud who manages to decipher information from people by asking a number of simple questions and reading body language. Cloud has a natural charm and his witty repartee that works perfectly with his incredible, scientific, skill.

In the mix were also a number of burlesque performers, male and female which included Dixie’s Tom Harlow and the Las Vegas King of Burlesque, Ray Gun, both performing unique interpretations of what Burlesque, or the more recently coined ‘boylesque’, can be.

The highlight of the evening was the comedy wailings of Patrick Monahan who begins each set by hugging members of the audience after setting the World record for “Longest Hug” at a time of 25 hours and 25 minutes alongside fellow comedian Bob Slayer last year at the Fringe. Monahan was the winner of the ITV search for a star-style program, Show Me the Funny in 2011 and since then has seemed to continue to grow in popularity.

The evening offers an insight into the circuit through the eyes of someone who truly has a passion for all things cabaret and whether a burlesque virgin or a master of ceremonies, the annual Another F*cking Variety Show is a must see for anyone who simply loves high-class entertainment.

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Reviewed 22/08/14

By Dan Phillips
@DirectorDan86

31st July – 23rd August 2014
Pleasance Dome, Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

 

 

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