Saturday, 29 July 2017

The Not So Secret Society @ Artworks Elephant

Artworks Elephant is a hipster paradise that bears more than a slight resemblance to Box Park in Shoreditch. For those of you who don't know what this is, imagine a retail and bar "space" made up of temporary units - many of which were once shipping containers. The Shoreditch version is packed and a little hideous on the weekend. The Elephant and Castle version is actually nicer, mainly because it's less busy and the drunk banker quotient is lower.

So what had I come this evening? My mum was up to visit so I had to explain to her. Not a standard comedy show that's for sure. TNSSS are up in Edinburgh this summer and are very much a cabaret event with everything from high energy burlesque to magic on the line-up alongside musical and traditional stand-up.

MC and promoter Ben got things underway in our little box to a decently full room made up of an unlikely mix of students and tipsy retirees. Candy Gigi set the standard early on with a typically outlandish ten minutes of absurd physical comedy which I'll refrain from describing further as you should go and see her in Edinburgh. From there on in there were card tricks, mind reading, a burlesque act based on Margaret Thatcher at an acid house party, Sam Rhodes looping his voice into harmonies about dog jokes, an 83 year old stand-up who'd been on Britain's Got Talent and a character act singer deftly blending Adolf Hitler and Frank Sinatra.

As for me, I opened the second half and whipped through my intro track, Tales of the Unexpected and West End to a decent response. As one cog in an unstoppable cabaret machine I felt I'd done my bit but tonight was very much about the whole show rather than one act. Another one to see should you be in Scotland this August.

Further credit to Ben also for extracting money from all who attended and then redistributing it to the acts. I covered expenses and who can complain about that with ten on the bill?

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