The New Edinburgh Folk Club, 50 Dundas St, Dunedin

11/03/2016 - 12/03/2016

Dunedin Fringe 2016

Production Details

Sacrilege (Noun): The violation or misuse of what is regarded as sacred. Synonyms: desecration, profanity, blasphemy, sin. 

Sacrilege presents: The sanctimonious celebration of drag and S&M has been conceived as an ongoing, narrative drag cabaret, centred on the lives and backstage dramas of its performers. A multi-disciplinary experience that pushes the boundaries of what gender, sensuality, and attraction are, creating a performance that challenges what cabaret can, and will, be. Think ‘The Muppets’, but with more rope.

Sacrilege, as a production company and as stand-alone performance, seeks to create work that provokes and captivates the audience while simultaneously providing space so showcase Dunedin queer and BDSM performance. Shows presented by Sacrilege seek to demonstrate the arts of burlesque, strip, vocal and dance work, and circus arts.

Each show is unique, with every night exploring the grey area between seductive and inappropriate. The cabaret style gives ample opportunity for showcasing new artists and experimental acts that are otherwise overlooked, all bookmarked within a narrative foundation that allows for long-term character arcs. Each instalment from Sacrilege develops on from the show before, often focusing on particular characters and relationships.

These developments focus on the well-known Dunedin cabaret personalities such as glamorous street-walker Joanna Laheaux, the wealthy but terribly innocent Mr S.Treighton Arrow II, sexual healer by day/ part time gimp by night Dr. Richard B. Hayve, and the interstellar, socially confused Lola Glitterous. Personalities in their own right, together they form the whole grain granola of a well-balanced kink and fetish diet. May contain nuts.

Each show explores the backstory of the cast’s dynamic as a show and as a sexually charged family. The collective seek to answer questions such as “who is Joanna?”, “Why is there a hairy man in a horse head?”, and “Is that an alien reciting poetry on stage?”.

Be confused. Be aroused. Get an education in the rhinestone and spike-covered classroom that is Sacrilege. Bring a towel.

The New Edinburgh Folk Club, 50 Dundas street, Dunedin
Fri 11 Mar & Sat 12 Mar 2016
$10.00 – $15.00
Get tickets » 

Nudity, Coarse Language, Adult Themes.

Theatre , Cabaret ,

Each performer has moments of brilliance

Review by Kimberley Buchan 13th Mar 2016

A Sanctimonious Celebration of Drag and S&M is a narrative cabaret show full of wild and outrageous characters. It is not very sanctimonious or very cabaret. However the characters and the way they are juxtaposed against each other are the best part of the show. The actors play off each other beautifully and they all seem to have their own retinue of loyal fans in the audience. 

Andrew (Andrew Brinsley-Pirie) is fantastically comic as the stripper. His dance moves have the air of a dog performing tricks to please its master, tongue lolling and eyes brightly eager for approval. His glitter decorations are both yonic and phallic and what is laid bare when he removes his final layer of clothing is an audience favourite. 

Joanna LaHeaux, alter ego of Joshua Coles-Braun, is an incredibly classy lady. She is a style queen who demands nothing less than everything that she wants and what she wants is absolute obedience and worship. Coles-Braun manages to pull of both elegance and animal lust at the same time. He is all sophistication and poise in his onstage persona.

Dr Richard B Hayve (Maddy Woods) is a trained veterinarian turned sex healer. He is sleazy and lascivious and the most fantastic dancer.  He is desirous rooting out the problems of everyone on stage, and some off stage, and healing them with all manner of sexual tools. A po-faced Woods hits comedy gold in her dance routines.

Mr S Treighton Arrow II (Kerry Lane) acts as the MC to what he thinks is a horse based poetry evening. He is one of my favourites. Lane has superb comic timing. They play their straight laced, earnest character perfectly and yet still manages to pull off a delightfully wry undertone to all this. They have extremely expressive eyes and use them to draw in the audience in, to side with their understated character. 

Buster Ass (Saz Ryder) is the trainee of Dr Hayve. He is being trained to overcome his crippling shyness. He likes leather, tattoos, and handlebar moustaches. Ryder’s best moments are when singing, especially when the right song is played for her.

Lola Glitterous (Elena Berg) is my other favourite. She forms the token alien of the cast. Her rendition of ‘Erotica Written By An Alien Pretending Not To Be Horrified By The Human Body’ was truly wonderful. Her singing voice is impressively massive even when she is wearing a corset. Her character wins the audience over and is quite good at improvising. Berg is multi-talented and completely charming on stage.

Each performer has moments of brilliance. Each performer has particular strengths, whether they be singing, dancing or acting. A revised show would do well to put each performer in the position where they would only be showing off their strengths. The show needs a few more rehearsals and at least one tech run to avoid putting some of the performers off their stride with mistimed cues. 

Sacrilege Productions aims to provoke conversation through examining gender and sexuality through the lens of drag. It makes good points through its narrative about creating relationships that fulfil the needs of everyone involved. It is definitely a celebration, and if you would like to be part of that then make sure you see it. 


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