Entertainment Hive 2020

Kate's final Variety Gala celebration

By Honey B

It was a case of move over mum as Gypsy Ceberano stole the limelight from her mum Kate and opened the 2014 Adelaide Cabaret Festival last night. The outgoing 10 year old pulled back the red curtain in her festival debut and did a superb comic monologue before Kate took over to sing Frank Sinatra's My Way. It's clear that Kate isn't quite ready yet to hand over the festival just yet as she's still doing it "her way'' as she made abundantly clear to the evening's host, Todd McKenney. McKenney was a wonderful host showing off his dancing and comedy skills as well as a wicked sense of humour - he swapped many quips with the gorgeous Rhonda Burchmore. McKenney was also stalked around the stage by roving band the Horns of Leroy throughout the show. Australia's star Hollywood reporter Nelson Aspen kicked off the run of amazing performances showing off his pipes with his wink and a nudge performance of Makin' Whoopee. Wendy Todd's simple design of a travelling boxing show ring was used to great effect by French femme fatale Caroline Nin and Australia's own showgirl Shay Stafford, who danced in Paris for 12 years, and there were plenty of feathers and can-can dancers. Nin went on to perfectly and passionately sing Edith Piaf's classic tune Non Je Ne Regrette Rien. There were many highlights to a sparkling Variety Gala this year including Melody Beck's peppy tribute to singer behind the stars Marni Nixon with a medley of Shall We Dance, I Could Have Danced All Night and Tonight. And also creating dramatic and poignant moments were Adelaide's own Carla Lippis with her perfectly phrased rendition of Bang Bang, while Kim Smith returned to Adelaide with his true cabaret workings of Pirate Jenny - it was simply hard to take your eyes off of this Victorian boy who has stolen the cabaret scene in New York. Two dazzling divas were Ali McGregor who shared the stage with some beautiful young girls, as well as Gypsy Ceberano, for a fun rendition of Beyonce's Single Ladies. While Rhonda Burchmore was brilliant as she delved into the pop world of Miley Cyrus with a mash-up of her song Wrecking Ball with Sinead O'Connor's Nothing Compares 2 U. Burchmore still has legs that go forever and talent to match. Lizzie Moore as the forgotten Minogue sister Erin surprised by not performing a Kylie or Danni song but did a moving version of INXS' Never Tear Us Apart and musical theatre stars Rachael Beck and Michael Cormick had hearts racing with their powerful duet from Miss Saigon, Sun and Moon. The guys also represented at the Variety Gala with Dutch singer Sven Ratzke utilising the stage and giving a memorable performance of Alabama Song. Stage and screen star Tim Campbell got his 80's on with a rockin' medley and proved he has some cool moves to the classic Footloose. The hunky lads kept coming, with Swing On This stars Ben Mingay, Luke Kennedy, Michael Falzon and Matt Lee looking suave in suits and singing the hell out of Nina Simone's Feeling Good. Ladies the boys have one show only on tonight (Saturday, June 7). Folk legend Melanie Safka and her son Beau Schekeryk finished the night with Lay Down (Candles in the Rain) and they were backed beautifully by the Class of Cabaret. Kate came back on-stage for one more time adding her own words to the My Way tune to share her strong feelings for this festival, the audience and the artists. She lead the artists off-stage with the Horns of Leon and with 17 days to go there's no doubt we will be seeing plenty of the Aussie songstress around the centre and Ms Ceberano will close the festival with her own show, The New Score on June 21. Adelaide Cabaret Festival, until June 21. Bookings: BASS 131 246
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