La Clique and The Famous Spiegeltent presents Velvet

Astonishing acrobatics, Australian divas and dazzling disco beats

★★★★
music review | Read in About 2 minutes
Published 14 Aug 2015

Velvet skilfully blends cabaret, burlesque and circus, seasons it with a 'dare to live big' theme and tops it off with a generous helping of disco beats. It's hard to imagine a more enjoyable show, and the standing ovation the company recieve on the night I'm in is very much deserved. 

Admirers of the male form are spoiled by acrobats Mirko Köckenberger, who plays a charmingly boyish bellboy who can handle a suitcase (or four), and the slightly sadomasochistic aerialist Stephen Williams, who dangles dangerously close above the spectators' heads. The crew of La Clique know what they're doing, and they're doing it very well. Whenever an act begins to lose the audience's attention, there's always a little surprise around the corner – like the striptease that turns into an African dance. And what starts like a predictable hula hoop act turns into one of the most hilarious scenes of the show.

The biggest strength of Velvet however is its vocalists. At the age of 62, Australian diva Marcia Hines simply blows us away. And multitalented Brendan Maclean, who plays the lead character in the narrative, might be a King of Pop in the making. He belts out disco tunes effortlessly, and deeply impresses with his unplugged cover of the Bee Gees' ‘Staying Alive’. He brings a new, unnerving dimension to the song - it's worth the ticket price all by itself.