Review | Drag star Velma Celli is brilliant in ‘Me & My Divas’

Me & My Divas | Da Parel, The Pleasure Garden | Until 28 Jan | ★ ★ ★ ★ ★  

British drag star Velma Celli returns to Fringe World with a brand new show for 2020. Me & My Divas is a homage to the many singers the performer idolised as she was growing up, back when she was a young boy in a Northern Town who just wanted to sing, dance, and be fabulous.

A talented singer, gifted comedian and quick witted host, Velma Celli has all the ingredients for a perfect cabaret show. The trick with really good cabaret is to give the audience exactly what you promised, while at the same time delivering everything they were not expecting.

Velma Celli, with musical accompaniment from the talented Joe Louis Robinson, worked her way through tunes from Whitney Houston, Barbra Streisand, Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Judy Garland, and many others. The choice of tune though was not always the obvious one, and the interesting selection kept the crowd on their toes.

The banter with audience members was comical and the laughs were flowing freely, and Velma Celli wasted no time making fun of all of those larger than life singing stars, while at the same time communicating absolute love of their skills.

The show finished on the perfect note with an unexpected knockout rendition of The Impossible Dream from the musical Man of La Mancha, an unstated nod to anyone who dreams of matching the performing abilities of many divas name checked during the show.

Velma Celli’s perfect performance was rewarded with a rapturous standing ovation, and she returned to lead the audience in a fun sing-a-long of a Madonna classic, where she once agains showed off her impressive vocal abilities.

A perfect hour of cabaret.

Velma Celli’s Me & My Divas is at Fringe World’s De Parel Spiegeltent until Tuesday 28th January. Tickets and more information available from fringeworld.com.au

Graeme Watson is an editor at OUTinPerth. He has a background in writing, dance, theatre, radio and film working as a performer, producer and writer. He is a casual academic at ECU, and writes for a variety of publications. Graeme has been working as a reviewer since 1997.

 

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