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Cabaret2018

Iconic – A Brief History of Drag

By Morgan Riley on 17 Feb 2018

Velma Celli’s journey from chorus boy on the West End to cabaret queen in Western Australia is a tale of confidence, defiance and of course, shoes.

The story of Iconic – A Brief History of Drag starts when Ian Stroughair was thrust into the limelight after years in chorus lines for West End musicals, and from there takes the audience to fabulous and frivolous places.

Unlike many cabaret variety hours out there, Iconic – A Brief History of Drag tells the personal story of one queen’s rise to the glittery throne as Velma Celli (Stroughair) takes the audience through the most iconic moments in drag history.

Velma Celli’s powerful performance is full of vocal acrobatics and homages to drag idols come and gone, including the favourites and some you may not expect.

From Rent to Ru Paul, and Chicago to Cher, the inimitable Velma Celli pays respect to the music and events that made the drag scene what it is today.

The story is not all glam and glitter eyeliner; be prepared to shine a spotlight on some tough times in the decades leading up to now.

Of course every story is punctuated with a tune fit for queens, delivered flawlessy by Velma Celli and a tight, talented live band.

With the perfect combination of talent and pastiche, it is no wonder Velma Celli’s debut in Perth was met with a standing ovation.

Iconic – A Brief History of Drag has all the sequins and smoke machines you would expect from a drag cabaret but the standout, other than Velma Celli’s voice (and shoes) has to be the story.

Drag as we know it has been shaped by performers from all over the world, at times accidentally, and although many have tried to jump on the bandwagon the real queens of the scene know who to look up to.

And the De Parel Spiegeltent at The Pleasure Garden may have a new queen in Velma Celli – at least until the tickets are sold out.

Ending
25 Feb 2018
The Pleasure Garden
De Parel Spiegeltent
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Morgan Riley

Morgan is an Excitement Coordinator and city dweller who likes long walks to the pub, dogs, a good book, and is always looking for the best coffee in Perth. This is his first time reviewing FRINGE WORLD shows after years lurking in the crowd.

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