Cabaret Interview Caro Meets Comedy Interview

EastEnd Cabaret: Notoriously Kinky

By | Published on Wednesday 24 April 2013

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We love-love-loved EastEnd Cabaret when we first caught one of their shows in Edinburgh, so we were thrilled to hear they’d be making their way to the Soho Theatre at the end of this month with ‘Notoriously Kinky’. We sent some questions over to the stars of the show, Bernadette Byrne and Victor Victoria. And they answered them. Which is nice.

CM: How did you two meet and what made you decide to work together on EastEnd Cabaret?
BB: Victy and I have known each other since we were children and she follows me everywhere. I have been trying to get rid of her for over 20 years.
VV: That’s not strictly true. She needs me (at least to play the instruments, as Bernadette can’t play any of them). She just doesn’t like to admit it. We’re soul mates, really…

CM: How do you come up with the content for a show? Do you work on stuff separately, or always together?
BB: We are always together, but our songs mostly come from my real life experiences. The places I have travelled or the people I have known, intimately.
VV: Our song-writing sessions usually involve me sitting at the piano or pulling some chords out of the accordion, while Bernadette’s stream of consciousness takes whatever path it decides. There is always a lot of gin involved…

CM: Is all your material a bit rude? Are people ever shocked by it?
VV: I think it depends on your viewpoint. If you hear a slightly risqué word, like “dangerwank”, without listening to the rest of the song, then perhaps you will be shocked. But our audiences are generally more shocked by the fact that they always know exactly what we’re talking about!

CM: This is the show that won you a Best Cabaret award in Adelaide, isn’t it? Is it exactly the same now as it was then, or has it changed and developed?
BB: Actually that was for our last show ‘The Revolution Will be Sexual’. ‘Notoriously Kinky’ has a lot of new songs, and is even a little bit naughtier.
VV: It also has a life-sized plastic lobster in it.

CM: You’ve been at the Edinburgh Festival the last couple of years – will you be going back with a new show this year? Do you have plans to visit any other festivals?
VV: We are definitely going back, with a brand new show at the Underbelly Cowgate – the Fringe is such a wonderful world to inhabit for a month, and we get to hang out with our fabulous ‘fringe family’ of performers, too.
BB: We are also hoping to play some music festivals (although I am not so good with mud and earwigs) and a few more European fringe festivals as well.

CM: You’ve appeared on Radio a couple of times – do you think your material lends itself well to the format, or does live performance work better?
BB: I think it definitely works on radio, but live performance is always more fun for me. I like to get up close and personal with my audiences.
VV: Too close if you ask me. I find it’s quite interesting hearing radio announcers trying to describe my half-man-half-woman appearance to their audience without any visual aid!

CM: Do you do other performance work, or does being EastEnd Cabaret take up all of your time?
BB: It is definitely a full time job – writing new songs, organising gigs, drinking gin… but sometimes I do pimp Victy and her musical saw out when we are short of cash.
VV: I have been known to lend a saw or a violin to various people in the cabaret scene. But only to pay for Bernadette’s gherkin habit.

CM: Where do you see yourselves ten years hence? Will EastEnd Cabaret still be going?
BB: Definitely darling. We could be anywhere, as long as they have gin.
VV: and hopefully we will be living in a slightly larger bedsit by then.

EastEnd Cabaret are at Soho Theatre with ‘Notoriously Kinky’ on 27th April and from 29 Apr – 4 May. See the venue website here for more info and tickets.

LINKS: www.sohotheatre.com | www.eastendcabaret.com | twitter.com/eastendcabaret



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