A hand-selected line-up of this country’s most exciting cabaret, comedy and music stars are calling the Queen’s Theatre home this Adelaide Fringe as part of THE QUEENS’ inaugural Fringe season.
Presented by GWB Entertainment in association with Release Creative, THE QUEENS is Adelaide’s newest Fringe destination and will transform one of the city’s oldest and most stunning buildings, the Queen’s Theatre, into a West End Fringe hub.
With a large number of world and South Australian premieres, the program for Adelaide’s newest Fringe venue sparkles with internationally acclaimed cabaret star Ali McGregor’s brand new show A Sweet Beginning, the return of drag legend Carlotta and home-grown singer to the stars, Jo Lawry, while those looking for a laugh will be able to tickle their funny bone with Damian Callinan and Paul Calleja’s hilarious and popular The Wine Bluffs.
THE QUEENS will showcase the best of Adelaide cabaret with shows by Carla Lippis (who is presenting new original works with New Songs for the New World), Amity Dry (who will be singing her personal favourites in intimate mode), the return of Amelia Ryan & Libby O’Donovan’s UNSUNG while cabaret darling Michael Griffiths will be dusting off his treasured LPs to sing his all-time favourites.
Every Friday and Saturday night, THE QUEENS will turn into a late-night after-party with Club Queens, a night where anything goes and everything can happen as a rotating line-up of hosts (such as Hans, Carla Lippis and Amelia Ryan) will lead the hottest cabaret and comedy talents in town for up-late fun and debauchery.
Curators Amelia Ryan and Zac Tyler say, “We’re absolutely thrilled with the lineup we have secured for next year’s Fringe. There is such tremendous talent here in SA and Australia, many of whom we’ve worked with across the Festival circuit, both nationally and abroad. The fact that we’ve been able to program so many of them within our inaugural program is incredibly exciting. We can’t wait to share it!”.
Other shows of note include a brand-new show from vocal powerhouses Mat Verevis, Mark Sholtez and Luke Kennedy, Waiting For John, Prinnie Stevens in Lady Sings the Blues and Debora Krizak’s return to her home-town of Adelaide to present an evening of classic, sassy show tunes, Ssh There’s a Lady On Stage and Carpenters From Kempsey.
Producers Torben & Richelle Brookman say, “We’re thrilled to be able to transform the iconic Queens Theatre into a first-class venue during the Adelaide Fringe and to provide an opportunity for artists to get back on stage and arts professionals working again after an incredibly challenging year for the industry in 2020.”
THE QUEENS will feature an inviting bar and lounge that will host people pre and post show, while the main performance area, The Chamber, will house over 220 seats, including premium tables, theatre style seating and high table options.
Aside from the performances, the premium venue is where people can meet before or after the shows thanks to the inviting bar and lounge foyer which will host a Cellar Door experience in the heart of the city for the Clare Valley region and enjoy cheese boards thanks to Apoteca.
Tickets go on sale on Friday, December 18 via thequeensadelaide.com.au. There will be more announcements to come in January.
THE QUEENS: Fringe at its Finest
February 19 to March 21
Corner of Playhouse Lane and Gilles Arcade, Adelaide
THE QUEENS’ 2021 Program
Waiting for John
Thursday, March 4 to Sunday, March 7
Swap water for wine in the regal surrounds of THE QUEENS, as three apostles of Australian music unite for a concert of biblical proportions. Mathew, Mark and Luke combine astonishing original music with songs by famous Johns, promising powerhouse vocals, sizzling wit and a few gospel truths. This is a baptism you don’t want to miss!
Every Friday and Saturday from Friday, February 19 to Saturday, March 20, 11.15pm
When you’re not yet ready to call it a night (and who is?), Club Queens is the place to be to tickle your fancies and satiate your senses. With an internationally acclaimed host at the helm each night, and featuring an ever-changing stellar line-up of the hottest Fringe acts in town, it’s the night where anything goes, and everything can happen!
Thursday, March 11 to Friday, March 19
Adelaide’s own cabaret starlet Amity Dry and band share an intimate showcase of her favourite songs, from her critically-acclaimed musical ‘The (M)other Life’ and top 10 album ‘The Lighthouse’ to hits from Sara Bareilles, Carole King, Adele and more. “Notes Midler and Streisand would kill for.” Glam Adelaide. ★★★★★ Theatre People. ★★★★★ ATG.
Friday, February 19 to Sunday, February 21
Helpmann Award winner and Adelaide Cabaret Festival darling Michael Griffiths has dusted off his LPs and perused his one-man shows to curate a solid gold line-up of his favourite tunes for your listening pleasure. From Madonna to Cole Porter, Kylie Minogue to A-ha, Eurythmics to the Violent Femmes, every song’s a feel-good winner.
The Hollows – The Echo Sessions
Sunday, February 21
Immerse yourself in the raw, resonant voices of ‘The Hollows’ as they harness the rich acoustics of this architecturally stunning venue to bring you an awe-inspiring, goose-bump worthy aural experience. Influenced by jazz, indie/folk and soul, the indulgent harmony of these captivating voices will transport you to another realm of sound.
Ali McGregor – A Sweet Beginning
Thursday, February 25 to Sunday, February 28
Audience favourite and former Adelaide Cabaret Festival director Ali McGregor returns to Adelaide Fringe with a brand-new show. Backed by 3 of Australia’s finest jazz musicians expect the perfect mix of old and new. “McGregor’s voice is phenomenal” ★★★★ Telegraph. “Money can’t buy this much heart, sass and pure mainlined joy” ★★★★★ Herald Sun.
The Wine Bluffs – Decanted
Thursday, March 11 to Sunday, March 21
On the cusp of vino domination, The Wine Bluffs (Damian Callinan & Paul Calleja) become trapped in pandemic besieged Eastern Europe. To get home, the sommeliers of premium reserve laughs, must country hop their way through the old wine world. Finally repatriated, they’re back to restore their empire and “lovingly lampoon wine snobbery” ★★★★ ArtsHub.
Amelia Ryan & Libby O’Donovan: UNSUNG
Thursday, February 25 to Sunday, March 7
Join this powerhouse duo for a loud, proud, raucous celebration of our original Australian pop and rock divas. In both a “vibrant and vital” (Advertiser) exploration of life in the 1960s, hear the thoroughly entertaining stories and songs that paved the way for generations to come! “amazing, engaging, inspiring…breathtaking” ★★★★★ Glam Adelaide.
Don’t Make Me Play ‘Piano Man’
Saturday, March 6 to Sunday, March 7
He’ll happily play Elton John, Carole King or Peter Allen but please don’t make him play THAT Billy Joel song. Journeying through all the great piano hits across the ages, Steven’s cheeky, irreverent style and experience at piano bars and singalong nights will make you feel right at home. Just don’t leave your drink on the piano without a coaster!
Euromash – Johanna Allen
Thursday, March 11 to Sunday, March 14
Draw back on your cigarette and hold on as Allen brings her latest sell out show to Adelaide. The music of Piaf, Piazzolla and Weill intertwines with songs from Minogue, Madonna and Cohen. Pop anthems with a touch of Tango. Chanson with a slice of Salsa. “Allen is Sophia Loren, Peggy Lee and Kiri te Kanawa rolled into one” The Age.
Jo Lawry Live
Saturday, March 13 & Sunday, March 14
After nearly two decades of living and working in New York, and touring internationally with the likes of Sting, Paul Simon and Peter Gabriel, Jo Lawry is back on her home turf, performing two shows at The Queens. Featuring UK saxophone titan Will Vinson on alto and piano, alongside bass and drums, Jo’s quartet will perform original songs from her critically acclaimed albums, as well as reworkings of jazz standards. ★★★★1/2 “Brimming with gleeful adventure and inner glow” DownBeat Magazine.
Carla Lippis: New Songs for the New World
Thursday, March 18 and Saturday, March 20
A collection of new original works from the internationally acclaimed singer. Brace for a cinematic, cathartic and immersive experience. “All hail the new dark queen” The Advertiser. “Divine” Rolling Stone. “A knockout” The Australian. “A dominating vocal and physical force” ★★★★★ Glamadelaide. ★★★★★ Kryztoff. ★★★★ The Scotsman. ★★★★ The Guardian.
Prinnie Stevens in LADY SINGS THE BLUES
Thursday, March 4 to Sunday, March 7
Told through her own experiences as a woman of colour, Prinnie Stevens (The Voice AU, Thriller Live UK) brings to life the songs, stories, struggles, and triumphs of some of the most prolific female singers of our lifetime. From Billie to Beyonce, and Etta to Aretha, be moved and transported through Prinnie’s touching tributes and powerhouse vocals
Ssh There’s A Lady On Stage
Sunday, March 14 and Saturday, March 20
Debora Krizak is one of Australia’s most critically acclaimed entertainers. Direct from Sydney and having starred in musicals such as A CHORUS LINE, CABARET, Opera Australia’s ANYTHING GOES and SWEET CHARITY, Debora will present an evening of classic, sassy show tunes from Broadway to movies that feature some of the world’s greatest leading ladies.
Carpenters From Kempsey
Saturday, March 13 and Sunday, March 21
‘The Carpenters From Kempsey’, celebrate The Carpenters, but with a comic twist. Starring Darren Mapes and Debora Krizak, they play Darren & Sharon Carpenter – from Kempsey. Together they recreate the sound of The Carpenters with uncanny accuracy. Join Darren & Sharon in concert, as they hit the road singing all those classic Carpenters songs.
Carlotta: I’m Not Dead Yet Darlings!
Friday, February 19 to Sunday, February 21
Sold out in 2019, Carlotta is back with a live band, an Order of Australia (AM) and she doesn’t have COVID! Australian icon, political activist and living legend, Carlotta has led an extraordinary life: good times, bum times, she’s seen them all and my dear, she’s still here. With musical direction by Helpmann award winner Michael Griffiths.
A Night in Paris
Saturday, March 13 and Saturday, March 20
If COVID has ruined your travel plans then let Louise and stellar band The French Set take you out on a night to Paris! An award-winning musical show that celebrates the artists of the great French songbook. Join them as they journey into the world of the ‘chanson française’, with old favourites and new songs in their Parisian cabaret spectacular!