There’s no shortage of love here at Londonist for EastEnd Cabaret. We’ve seen them underground, overground, warbling free to bigger and bigger crowds so we were champing at the bit to see the first proper outing of their Edinburgh Fringe show, The Revolution Will Be Sexual.
Following in the footsteps of Frisky & Mannish and Bourgeois & Maurice, the latest greatest cabaret double act evince more chemistry than the Manhattan Project. Sensual chanteuse Bernadette Byrne is all smouldering looks, pitch-black make-up and deliciously dark desires. Her half-sir, half-siren companion Victor/Victoria is the back-biting backing singer and multi-instrumentalist, ever-ready with the snarky quip.
They already have an eager following thanks to their repertoire of a well-balanced blend of louche covers and erotic originals, appearances at high-profile events like this year’s Alternative Eurovision and their expert use of social media; in the lead up to their shows, the pair lived in a tent within the Arcola Tent producing a nightly update on their adventures via Soundcloud.
The new show wisely retains many of their classic tales, including those of pingpong balls and a priapic paramour called Kevin. There’s some sex-ed care of Mr Little Red Book, their commie Karma Sutra, and handy props Mr Sickle and Miss Hammer who are used to illustrate tonight’s lesson on The Tory Titwank.
Of the new numbers, we especially liked “Danger Wank”, a female insight into this well-documented phenomenon (“when you’re on a bus stuck in traffic and you can’t get off – well, you can”). To top it off, there are also doses of audience interaction and a crazy call-and-response part with a tentful of happy folk all singing back, each in their own key.
We eventually wandered out into the chill Dalston air with fat grins having had a night to remember. These one-and-a-half women are on their way up and very much worth seeing.
All photos (c) Sin Bozkurt.
EastEnd Cabaret are appearing Thursday-Saturday this week at the Arcola Theatre. Tickets are £12. More information and tickets can be found here.