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LITTLE DEATH CLUB gets 8.5/10 Weekend Fringe climax

Little Death Club @ De Parel Spiegeltent at The Pleasure Garden (for Fringe)
Friday, February 2, 2018

8.5/10

Friday night’s line to Little Death Club snaked around the front of the beautiful De Parel Spiegeltent, the arena for this totally sold out variety show, full of happy punters amped for the late-night Fringe ‘hot ticket’ (psst – don’t leave getting your tickets too late for this one).

Little Death Club is hosted by the amazing Bernie Dieter, half of the EastEnd Cabaret show that has graced Perth Fringe for the past few years. Ms Dieter brings the Weimar cabaret to the 2010s with poise, razor wit and overall sauciness in spades. Importantly, she has an excellent rapport with the performers and audience, making all feel welcome and participants in the show. Owing to the revolving guests and audience interactions, there is a lot of improvised humour where she really shines, holding down the proceedings with haughty lines delivered in a strong German accent and steely gaze out into the audience (that’s right, boys – no place is safe from a potential trip to the stage!).

The rousing opening number saw Bernie take to the crowd, with several burly dudes eventually carrying the burlesque hostess back to the stage. She can certainly belt out a tune, and had the audience in stitches with her ad libs at coordinating her transport back to the stage (‘Beardy’ from the audience certainly had a night to remember).

The night’s first guest was the deadpanned Marcel Lucont, a regular at Fringe who also hosts his own variety and celebrity interview shows. Marcel was snobbily bemused by the uncouth Australian audience throughout, delivering his detached punchlines and little ditty in his heavy French accent.

Next up were Ghost Party – a girl-guy acrobatic duo dressed maximally in ghoulish attire, and never wavering from a sunken-cheeked death stare throughout their strong acrobatic routine.

Dieter then checked back in with the crowd, delivering a couple more memorable racy numbers. The humour and visual gags she delivers are definitely XXX-rated, giving the show a definite wickedly funny edge and kept the laughs coming.

Next was Leah Shelton, who is performing in Terror Australis as part of Fringe. She brought the full goon bag bogan element to the show, but was a little slow-starting which cramped her time on the pole a bit. The guest spots are of necessity a bit short, serving as a short tease to the full show when there’s more time for everything.

Last guest was the terrific Le Gateau Chocolat. Her two numbers energized the crowd and the whole tent was dancing in the aisles to some big, big tunes.

Dieter closed the evening with two rousing numbers for our troubled times, the last a singalong drinking song sending audience out into the wee hours with big grins on our faces.

Little Death Club is the perfect end to a big Friday or Saturday Fringe night out, and really lets the wonderful Bernie Dieter show off her stuff – a talented, hilarious hostess for a great naughty show in the classy Spiegeltent that is a thing to behold.

The format of the show is variety, and last weekend’s performers will rotate with new acts for each of the Fringe weekends, so you are free to come and come again. Check the Fringe website for who’s on, but each week promises to bring the cream of the Fringe crop to Little Death Club.

PAUL DOUGHTY

Little Death Club runs every Friday and Saturday night at 11:15pm until February 24 at De Parel Spiegeltent at FRINGE WORLD’s Pleasure Garden. For tickets and more information, visit the event page here.

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