Two Super Super Hot Men, VAULT Festival

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By Evangeline Cullingworth

Hidden away in a soundproofed studio, two moustached men defy Mother Nature. Foley art is shrouded in a sexy mystery. I hear fire crackling, but I see Greggs wrapper. I hear glaciers melting, but I see pinecone. It doesn’t make sense and if I think about it for too long I get sweaty and nervous.

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Drag Becomes Her, Soho Theatre

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by Maeve Campbell

Drag auteur Peaches Christ has made their name as an adaptor of cult movies, directing the great and good of Ru-Paul’s Drag Race in leading roles. Drag Becomes Her stars charming long-term collaborator Jinx Monsoon and the ‘terminally delightful’ Ben DeLaCreme in the Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn film roles. What results is a raucous hour and half-long mess of a show, that’s both stressful and exciting to watch.

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Queereteria TV, Above the Stag

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by Archie Whyld

In 1988, when I was a 13-year-old boy in a provincial town in Derbyshire, being in
possession of Erasure’s number-one album The Innocents was a big deal. It was cool to
know the names of the synthpop duo, Andy Bell and Vince Clarke. ‘Yeah, we’re going to see Andy and Vince in concert, yeah, Andy Bell, Vince Clarke, Andy and Vince’, we bantered in the playground as casually as possible. So to see Andy Bell as Torsten in Queereteria TV, relatively up close, in the flesh, was for me a piece of pop history, big deal again, nostalgia.

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Alma: A Human Voice, Edinburgh Festival Fringe

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By Laura Kressly

Alma Margaretha Maria Schindler was the wife of three famous artists and the lover of a fourth. A composer herself, her achievements are overshadowed by the men she loved. It’s the typical tragic narrative of talented women from the past, and this show unfortunately perpetuates it. 

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Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho, VAULT Festival

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by guest critic Gregory Forrest

The night before Parliament votes on Section 28, an amendment to the Local Government Act which prevents schools or similar local authorities from promoting homosexuality, Magaret Thatcher finds herself in a Soho nightclub. This is the fabulous premise to the now iconic drag cabaret: Margaret Thatcher, Queen of Soho.

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Dietrich: Natural Duty, VAULT Festival

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by guest critic Tom Brocklehurst

A one wo(man) show by Peter Groom, Natural Duty focuses on Marlena Dietrich’s involvement with the US war effort during World War II. During the war, she spent several years at the front line in France, Belgium and Germany, improving troops’ morale by performing shows and meeting soldiers.

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Liza’s Back (is broken), Underbelly

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by guest critic Maeve Campbell

Liza Minnelli should have starred in the original Sound of Music, Gypsy and Les Miserables, but somehow things got in her way. That’s Trevor Ashley’s vision, and he is giving her some of those classic Broadway moments in this hour and a half show. Direct from rehab, Ashley’s Liza is suitably glittery, lispy and pant-suited. This is not a subtle impersonation, but the receptive London audience certainly don’t want that.

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Miss Nightingale, The Vaults

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By guest critic Alistair Wilkinson

Fly to the front line. Sing some songs. Win the war. Live happily ever after. Sounds easy, right? That’s the idyllic goal that two queers, an unmarried mother and an unborn child feel in Matthew Bugg’s dreamy production of Miss Nightingale. This gorgeous depiction of 1940’s Britain hits you right in the feels and pulls on all heartstrings. The set provides an intimate cabaret club vibe, decorated with posters stating memorable lines from the wonderful songs that are performed throughout.

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