A
 
Web www.artsmart.co.za
A R T S M A R T
arts news from kwazulu-natal

supper theatre
www.artsmart.co.za
enquiries@artsmart.co.za
 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
 

NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

LET’S MISBEHAVE (article first published : 2001-06-1)

From the moment the glorious sound rings out of two pianos played by two accomplished musicians with rhythm, soul and a major helping of charm, it’s time to sit back and relax … and enjoy Let’s Misbehave, one of the most entertaining productions seen at the Royal Hotel’s Backstage.

There’s no director, the cast devised and worked on the show themselves. There are no smoke machines, no backing tracks, no glitzy drapes and no glamorous costumes. There’s also nothing PC about the show – the members of the male sex outnumber the female, for a start – nothing deeply meaningful, and nothing striving for a place in a new South African cultural identity. Nothing that aims to be anything more than a well-put together programme featuring the very considerable musical talents of three people who have made their mark at home and by all accounts have been a big hit in Dubai and Abu Dhabi where they’ve been working for the last two years.

Let’s Misbehave is based on songs that encourage wild or unconventional behaviour. Reading the play list “cold” you wonder how musical director Evan Roberts is going to link them all into some cohesive whole. But he pulls it off because the moods are neatly linked and the audience tends to follow the style of music and not so much the era.

Songs range from Noel Coward’s Uncle Harry and Sondheim’s Old Friends/Living Alone to Kander and Ebb’s Chicago and Jerry Herman’s La Cage aux Folles as well as Evan Roberts’ send up of Sarah Lee with Mrs Balls.

While all three work as a tightly-knit team, the unquestionable star of the show is Carol Trench, who made audiences sit up and take notice when she appeared in Piaf, Brel, Aznavour at the Playhouse Cellar several years back. In the few years she’s been away, she’s grown considerably as a performer and is now a completely assured and controlled performer.

Without the height and soignče appearance of most cabaret stars, she makes up for it with a powerhouse of dramatic skills, a fine sense of comedy timing and an endearing self-effacing manner. She is at times, coy, vacuous, sexy, raunchy or persuasive. She sparkles, she smoulders, she bounces with naiive energy. But always she’s totally in command of the music and her rendering of Class was a treat.

Each seated at a piano mainly in profile to the audience, Evan (move over, Elton John!) Roberts and Anthony (eat your heart out, Liberace!) Stonier could easily be sidelined in this scenario but they manage to get their fair share of the limelight. With two pianos on the stage, there’s not a lot of space to move so the show is fairly static but there’s plenty of sparkling dynamics and fingertip gymnastics coming from the keyboards!

In fact, the only quibble I have about the show is that I would have preferred more piano playing – the “duel” that opens the second half is hilarious. The pianos were sponsored by Musikland.

The show’s a winner – and so is the meal. The starters are both delicious: an imposing Mediterranean Stack of Grilled Aubergine or a Smoked Mixed Seafood Soup. I had the Grilled Breast of Chicken – nice and succulent with gingered noodles but didn’t taste the other choice, Oxtail Casserole, but my husband pronounced it highly agreeable. As always, the Royal’s Chocolate Mousse is a star turn!

Let’s Misbehave runs until June 10 – it’s a short run but I’m sure they’ll be back. Performances are from Wednesdays to Saturdays at 19h00 with Sunday shows at 14h00. Tickets include a three-course meal in true Royal Hotel style. Book on (031) 333-6222.




 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
a co-production by caroline smart services and .durbanet. site credits
copyright © subsists in this page. all rights reserved. [ edit ] copyright details  artsmart