By Samuel Smith
Last updated on: June 3, 2019 at 2:15 pm
Since its inaugural year in 2001, the Adelaide Cabaret Festival has pushed boundaries, bringing cutting-edge performers from around the world to Adelaide.
This year, multi-talented entertainer Julia Zemiro has taken over the reins as Artistic Director, steering the program in an even more diverse and exciting direction.
Here are some of our top picks for 2019, subject to availability.
1. Taxithi – An Australian Odyssey, 7–8 June 2019
Hear the untold stories of women who migrated from Greece to Australia during the 50s and 60s in Taxithi, written by Helen Yotis Patterson. Prepare for a night of memories and music from Greece, celebrating women who created new lives for themselves in a faraway country.
2. Dolly Diamond – Parton Me, 7, 8, 9 June 2019
Queen of cabaret Dolly Diamond is no stranger to the stage, performing countless show-stopping acts over the years. Nothing, however, compares to her Dolly Parton performances. See Diamond celebrate the most honoured female country performer of all time in Dolly Diamond – Parton Me, supported by a fabulous live band and Adelaide’s acclaimed vocal powerhouse, The Gospo Collective.
3. Steven Oliver – Bigger and Blacker, 8–9 June 2019
Known for being ‘faboriginal’ on ABC’s hit TV show, Black Comedy, comedian Steven Oliver sashays his way to the 2019 Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Presented by the Adelaide Festival Centre, Bigger and Blacker features thoughtful, original songs, seeing Oliver embark on a journey of self-discovery.
4. UNSUNG – Amelia Ryan and Libby O’Donovan, 9–10 June 2019
UNSUNG tells the story of what it took for female singers of the 1960s to be heard with an uplifting, raucous and nostalgic musical soundtrack.
5. Suburban Gothic, 9–10 June 2019
Witty, rude and politically incorrect, Suburban Gothic takes great joy in sending up the lives of everyday Australians. Sit back and prepare to shudder your way through a hilarious show featuring original songs and thrilling tales of suburban horror.
6. Dami Im – My Life in Songs, 13–14 June 2019
Winner of The X Factor 2013, pop artist Dami Im is returning to her classical roots for My Life in Songs, telling the emotional and inspiring story of her immigration to Australia.
7. The Letter String Quartet with Tina Del Twist, 13 June 2019
Cabaret powerhouses Tina Del Twist and The Letter String Quartet combine forces for a dark and debauched sensory tour of songs and stories. Imagine a Christmas party, wedding speech, birthday celebration and funeral procession all rolled into one.
8. Fat Musicals – A Body of Work, 15–16 June 2019
In Fat Musicals – A body of Work, comedians Maeve Marsden and Libby Wood take a satirical look at theatre’s greatest (and thinnest) leading ladies. See Marsden and Wood take on Chicago, Calamity Jane, Sideshow and Wicked in a night of tongue-in-cheek excellence.
9. Larissa McGowan – Cher, 19–20 June 2019
Award-winning choreographer and dancer Larissa McGowan explores notions of gender, power and culture in Cher – a tribute to the seemingly-immortal queen of pop.
10. Dickie Beau – Unplugged, 19–20 June 2019
One of the best lip-syncers in the world, Dickie Beau brings his iconic range of voices to the 2019 Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Winner of Best Alternative Performer in the London Cabaret Awards, Dickie Beau is one of the UK’s most distinctive and exciting performers.
11. An Evening with Zoë Coombs Marr, 20–21 June 2019
Splitting her time between comedy festivals and some of the world’s biggest stages, Zoë Coombs Marr is a stand-up comedian and actor with a wicked sense of humour. This year, Coombs Marr takes a not-so-glamorous walk down memory lane, sharing her (largely failed) attempts to be musical in An Evening with Zoë Coombs Marr.
12. iOTA, 21–22 June 2019
Backed by an 11-piece orchestra, Slap and Tickle is a hilarious and unexpectedly moving exploration of the variety genre, enduring talent and the ties that bind.