If there is one show that will inspire you to take up circus training immediately, it is Briefs – the all-male cabaret currently playing at Q Theatre in Auckland.
Briefs is a hybrid circus-drag-cabaret-burlesque-comedy show, and I will spend the rest of my life wondering how seven genetically blessed men managed to find one another to create one of the most entertaining shows I have seen in a very long time.
At times it felt like I was sitting in a drag show on Oxford Street back in the days when attending drag shows was de rigeur for Sydney-siders basking in the collective warmth of Priscilla – Queen of the Desert celebrating the early 90’s drag scene. Briefs Master (Mistress?) of Ceremonies is the acerbic New Zealand-born-Samoan Shivannah, resplendent in a Beyoncé-inspired wardrobe, towering on heels so high that I’m surprised a nosebleed wasn’t involved.
Other times, it was like being in the audience of Cirque du Soleil, with jaw-dropping feats by contortionist, Thom Worrell, suspended from the ceiling in red silks, manipulating his body in such a way that I never knew was possible.
Then there was the glorious Captain Kidd, who is literally glorious. I’m sure that performing burlesque requires a healthy dose of self-confidence, and this fabulous, preening creature with about zero per cent body fat, tattoos in all the right places, and a graceful yet absurdly strong physique makes you want to jump onstage and pay homage at his gorgeous bare feet. He wasn’t named Best Burlesque act in Las Vegas for nothing.
I don’t want to reveal too much of the show, but the combination of a ridiculously rude monkey (I’ll never peel a banana in the same way again), a very naughty schoolboy and his yo-yo (why didn’t the boys at school look like that?), a divine Marilyn-esque character, and other hilariously sexy performances make for one hell of a raucous night out. There was, however, one moment in the show that had my friend literally gagging with revulsion, so be prepared for a couple of on-the-nose items.
It was refreshing to see a show that makes no apologies for its all-out seductiveness delivered by an all-male cast. The performers clearly love what they do, and they are brilliant at doing it. Even when they are practically naked, the genius of the show makes you look past the amount of skin shown and appreciate the commitment that these guys have made to their craft. Briefs is laugh-a-minute, all out bawdiness, and an absolute must-see if you can.
* Briefs – The World’s Hottest All-Male Boylesque Circus Spectacular is playing at the Q Theatre in Auckland until the 10th of December.