Deviant Women – Adelaide Fringe Review 2018
by Catherine Leo
I always love to do a ‘Girls Night out’ for the Fringe to break up all the kids shows I’m going to, and in the past it’s usually been a bit of cabaret – but this year I couldn’t go past ‘Deviant Women’, which seemed like a prefect match for me and my book club friends.
Performers Lauren and Alicia are hosts of ‘Deviant Women: The Podcast’ – which I’ve now subscribed to – though many in the audience were clearly already fans. In 2018 they brought their podcast to the stage, at the Jade Monkey, doing two shows about two different women in history. I caught the second, which told us the story of the “down-right weird Madame Blavatsky”. I wish my uni History lectures could have been this funny!
Alicia and Lauren have wonderful skills in telling a story, going in and out of character, ribbing each other about occasional lapses in script recall… and bringing that humour back into their performance. Costume and character-changes (by adding a hat or a beard, to their incredible Victorian dresses) were simple and perfect, and the backdrop of shadow puppets added interest.
The 90 minute show went incredibly quickly, with a huge amount of content as we explored the life of Helena Blavatsky, the Russian occult philosopher and author, who co-founded the Theosophical Society in 1875. Audience participation with appropriate ‘woo-ing’ during tales of ghosts and seances was fun and there was clearly much love for the performers.
My party of four all loved the show and felt it was a perfect match for our literary-loving, feminist and funny, book club! We are also big fans of The Katering Show and we saw moments of similarity to the two Kates. That’s all good in our book.
Well done Lauren and Alicia, hope to catch your show again next year!
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