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Briefs: The Second Coming

Katie Lavers

High energy, totally cheeky, a little bit political and a truck load of fun.
Briefs: The Second Coming

The cast of Briefs: The Second Coming via Sydney Festival.

As the beautiful bearded Samoan ringmistress Shivannah (the nom de guerre of Fez Fa’anana) puts it, the Briefs show The Second Coming is ‘a little bit butch with a fuck-load of camp’. Mixing circus, burlesque and cabaret, the opening night show was packed out. Performed in the Spiegeltent at the Meriton Festival Village with a bar at the back of the venue, the ring mistress urged the crowd to get up and buy a drink at their leisure. This gave audiences the freedom to move around the tent and see the show from a number of angles, creating an informal, club-like dynamic which made this show hard to resist.

From the boylesque Dita von Teese number in a glass birdbath from Mark ‘Captain Kid’ Winmill, whose trapeze swinging through the water drenched the front rows of the audience; to the aerial hoop act from Thomas Worrell (performing an act generally performed by a female artist) whose contortionist movement is silky smooth and totally sumptuous, gender-bending is the order of the day. All the numbers are provocative including a clowning section featuring a stripping schoolboy, Louis Biggs, whose yoyo gets entwined around different sections of his anatomy; to the outrageous over-the-top sexual posturing with a banana from Evil Hate Monkey; to a burlesque number featuring strategically positioned white ostrich feather fans.

Some of the images in this show are sensational – in particular the moment when performer Dallas Dellaforce, wearing a nude body stocking with a female body drawn onto it and an enormously long, curly white-blond wig blown by a wind machine, stands like a high camp Botticelli Venus rising out of the stage. Dellaforce brings an intriguing performance art edge to his acts, especially in his wonderful drag act when dressed in a sumptuous Fifties evening dress with pink balloon breasts rising out of the top of his low cut evening dress and wearing a Marilyn Monroe blonde wig, he camped it up as a Fifties coquette, flipping from sultry into a totally scary horror tantrum, before returning to coquette mode with the husky phrase, ‘I love you.’ At the end of the song, stripped naked, sporting a shaved head and wearing only a suggestive long thin pink balloon, the full potential of camp to reveal different layers of artifice and constructed identity was revealed.

Outrageous, shocking, high camp, funny and totally wonderful! Do not miss this show. You leave feeling energized and exhilarated with your face aching from laughing so much.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Briefs: The Second Coming

Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent
Meriton Festival Village, Hyde Park North
Cast: Fez Fa’anana, Thomas Worrell, Louis Biggs, Dallas Dellaforce, Mark ‘Captain Kidd’ Winmill, Lachlan Shelley and Evil Hate Monkey.

7-21 January 2017
Sydney Festival

What the stars mean?
  • Five stars: Exceptional, unforgettable, a must see
  • Four and a half stars: Excellent, definitely worth seeing
  • Four stars: Accomplished and engrossing but not the best of its kind
  • Three and a half stars: Good, clever, well made, but not brilliant
  • Three stars: Solid, enjoyable, but unremarkable or flawed
  • Two and half stars: Neither good nor bad, just adequate
  • Two stars: Not without its moments, but ultimately unsuccessful
  • One star: Awful, to be avoided
  • Zero stars: Genuinely dreadful, bad on every level

About the author

Dr. Katie Lavers is a writer, director, producer and researcher based in Sydney.

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