17 July 2012

Ahoy! Features

One feature artist in the theatre was Davidia, a capable singer of an uncertain age (two divorces, two children) and a cougar act. She’d been introduced variously as “the queen of the high Cs” and a performer who sang it all, from the ‘50s to today. Megan and I dreaded that a singer may ignore song before the rock era but we were pleasantly surprised to hear of her operatic background and to hear a few snippets of the Magic flute and Nessun dorma along with Bohemian rhapsody and the pop repertoire. Davidia was quite an odd but amusing mix of full-ranged voice, loving mother (we saw pics of her two kids), voluptuous single with lively patter and sultry entertainer. I really liked her show.

Another feature act was a crazy, straight man-funny man classical husband-and-wife pairing called String Fever. Like Davidia, these were trained performers from the fine music tradition but their act was anything but. The zany one was Brenton, the violinist husband; the straight one was Jackie, the cellist wife. Now, these were decent players. I enjoyed their competence, their sense of rhythm and melody and countermelody, her sense of cello as accompanist, their correct intonation and strident playing and their harmonised singing. Apparently they’d played together under the famed George Martin as conductor at the Opera House for a show called All you need is the Beatles. I later heard that they played in the Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra and I’d believe it. But this show was anything but staid. They did dedications to Andre de Roo/Rieu, snippets of 30 Beatles tunes, a piano/vocal take on Elton John (“that’s when I fell in love with him” Jackie said in humourous despair) and finished on features from Beethoven’s Song of Joy in English. All whacky and over the top, but clean fun and nicely done, with arranged backing from Gordo/n and his Showband. Maybe my mind was becoming soft from cruising by this time, but it’s good humoured, Aussie-entertaining and I enjoyed it. String Fever are Brenton Edgecombe (violin) and Jacqueline Edgecombe (cello).

  • Davidia
  • String Fever
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