Entertainment Hive 2017

Spaced-out Briefs show a true encounter

By Honey B

The time in the spotlight for the all-male cabaret burlesque troupe of Briefs has been anything but brief. Forming in 2008 in a warehouse space in Brisbane the lads started out testing risqué performances before taking on the festival circuit and creating a strong name for their unique style of “rough and tumble variety’’ shows. Briefs director/performer and host Fez Faanana says he’s excited to debut the latest Briefs show, Close Encounters, at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival this year. Combining the traditions of circus, the extremities of physical theatre, the artistry of drag, the bravado of burlesque, the debauchery of speakeasies and the showmanship of cabaret, Adelaide audiences are in for a spaced-out treat. Faanana answered some questions about Close Encounters below. What are audience members in for when they step into your new Cabaret Festival show? “Our latest production is set in the Brief’s mother ship and will transport audiences to a warped world of galactic warriors, stripping spacemen, dramatic alien sightings, time-bending bunny rabbits, escape pods and more.’’ Do you start out performing in your briefs or is there a bit of a tease? “There is definitely an element of tease. There is nowhere to go if you kick off the show in your jocks –  and besides we have far too many stunning costumes to get through, brilliantly designed by Dallas Dellaforce and Lisa Fa’alafi. ‘’  Tell us about your choreography – you must work very hard to make it look easy? “Do we make it look easy? I am going to have to work on that. I drive the choreography and direction of the show collaboratively with the cast. We work hard together and we put the right amount of pressure on each other to make the work and to sell it onstage.’’ All of you come from various circus/vaudeville/acrobatic areas, tell us about your performance skills. “My performance skill is being boss mum and surrounding myself with stupidly talented performers on stage. This makes me look a truckload more skillful than I actually am. That is a skill isn’t it?’’ What other areas of performance do the other members of Briefs come from? “Our new show brings a new evolution of cast, which makes for fresh ingredients in the mix. In true Briefs style each cast member brings his own blend of circus, performance art, drag, comedy and burlesque. Do you have a favourite performance piece – what is it and why is it your favourite? “I can’t pick between the opening fanfare and the closing extravaganza. Both are epic celebratory group acts that are pure Briefs at heart, incorporating elaborate costume changes, ornate feather fans, pumping music, fierce choreography and a good dose of both idiot and glamour.’’ Tell us about audience reactions to your show. “We bring Close Encounters to Adelaide cabaret festival fresh off the rack having only just developed work and presented it in our home town of Brisbane. Audiences were ecstatic that the new show was in the same vein, yet a growth from our previous works.’’ Are there any shows you would like to see while at the Cabaret Festival? “There are so many brilliant shows in the program. Just off the top of my head I would love to see Alan Cumming, Bridget Everett, One Suitcase Four Stories, Dianne Reeves, Meow Meow, Effie the Virgin Bride, Carlotta, Le Gateau Chocolat and Ancient Rain.’’ Briefs has been travelling the world, how exciting is it for you to show off your unique style of burlesque around the globe? “It is exciting to “show off” our unique style of burlesque around the globe. It is an absolute luxury to be able to do this. I am more so excited about being an independent artist collective that has paved its own pathway to a renowned international touring circuit with the grass roots support of audiences.’’ Briefs in Close Encounters, Adelaide Cabaret Festival, June 9 to 11, 10.30pm, Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent. Bookings: BASS 131 246
Home Music Film Theatre Comedy Reviews Art Social Win Contact