Fringe Bar, 26-32 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington

16/02/2017 - 17/02/2017

S & M’s Cocktail and Lounge Bar, 176 Cuba St, Wellington

24/02/2017 - 25/02/2017

NZ Fringe Festival 2017 [reviewing supported by WCC]

Production Details

Louche cabaret celebrating First World Problems with satire and song. Featuring Clever Hansel and Constance Craving, two of Wellington’s most tolerated cabaret performers.

Clever Hansel has been charming Wellington audiences with his delightfully perverse brand of burlesque, music and twisted cabaret since 2009. Ukulele in hand, he’s performed with artists such as Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley, and his pelvic gyrations have scandalised audiences at The Menagerie, Cabaret l’Amour, the Fetish Ball and the NZ Burlesque Festival (along with various dark alleys of the nation’s capital). Hansel also performs as a member of The Klaus Vermillion Quartet, Wellington’s only band of jazz con-artists.

Constance Craving has been performing so long she used to have to write things with a pen. On a stone. Inexplicably popular as an EmCee for cabaret and burlesque shows, she has performed all over New Zealand as well as in Caburlesque, Cabaret l’Amour, The Menagerie, D.I.Y Burleskiwi and Burlesque Baby.

Since first clapping eyes on one another, these two have been plotting a merger. No subject is taboo, no rhyme too excruciating, no harmony too close – it’s no holes barred!

Songs for Grown Ups will appeal to fans of Tom Lehrer, Noel Coward and the tone deaf.

Fringe Bar, 28 Allen Street, Te Aro, Wellington 6011
Feb 16 & 17
TICKETS: $15/$10.50

Theatre , Comedy , Cabaret ,

Tolerated with much pleasure

Review by Margaret Austin 17th Feb 2017

Constance Craving is a large lady, with an even larger spirit. And it’s this spirit, in merry cahoots with her sidekick Clever Hansel, that gives this show its charm.  

We hear songs from the First World War while waiting, which set the scene for the lyrics to follow. 

Enter Constance – in a modest full length dressing gown – presumably for the sake of complete contrast with the four gorgeous outfits which succeed, and indeed outdo, each other in the course of the show. Make-up has to be over the top to complement the outfits, and it is. 

Clever doesn’t do too badly either. He’s period smart in pin striped trousers, flamingo pink shirt, and waistcoat. As an opening number, he offers us ‘Mein Herr’ from Cabaret, but with an interesting pun on ‘Herr’. 

The rest of the songs are clever too. We hear ‘Resurrection Rag’ from Constance, and a wry lament on dating apps: ‘Swiping left on love’ from Clever. Between songs there is repartee from our self-styled Teutonic stage manager and our life coach MC.  

Staging is a bit awkward, probably due to the limitations of the performance space at the Fringe Bar. All exits and entrances are made from the same side, which detracts somewhat from their effectiveness.

Clever and Constance, billed as two of Wellington’s most tolerated cabaret performers, were tolerated with much pleasure last night.

And anyone in need of a gorgeous gown for an outrageous occasion should get in touch with Constance.


Maryanne February 17th, 2017

Thank you Margaret for appreciating our work! :) Just wanted to clarify a couple of things for the readers - our pre show music is a selection of songs from Flanders and Swan, Noel Coward, Tom Lehrer and other 20th century comic luminaries, and there is indeed one by Flanders and Swan about war. The song Resurrection Rag is a Clever Hansel original sung by him. And Constance NEVER makes costumes, and her special couturier is devoted only to her ;-)

Thank you so much for not giving away any of our gags!

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