Melbourne Cabaret Festival: Anya Anastasia’s ‘Rouge Romantic’

It was hard to restrain my excitement since I heard Anya Anastasia back in Melbourne with a new show, ‘Rogue Romantic‘.  My girlfriend, quietly suspicious that there was some was serious crushing on Anya going on, grudgingly accepted my explanations that Anya had many other fans too, particularly since her Fringe premiere and award winning show ‘Songs of Cake and Death‘ last year.

My flimsy detached-reviewer/attentive-boyfriend façade lasted a minute into the opening song. I mean, Anya walked to my seat. Did handstand on my lap, and demanded I remove her bloomers. While serenading us with a song about falling in love with a look. This will not be an impartial review.

‘Rogue Romantic’ features all new original songs based on her musings of falling into (and out of love). It is a also a show about a dysfunctional relationship between Anya the writer and Anya the diva gone rogue, an alter ego projection of her insecurities, desires, and ambitions. Is as clever as it is delightful. For one song she jumps from playing piano to keyboard, alternating between the diva and the writer, carrying out an argument with herself. Brilliant stuff.

Bringing it all together are her catchy and exquisite tunes. Sung in a wide range from husky cabaret to operatic soprano, it is a perfect blend of tongue-in-cheek, satire, and sentiment. We were captivated for the whole hour. Her biting wit, the confident charm, and her unique brand of twisted comedy always keeping us on our toes.

Songs tell us about the rich boyfriend who is always travelling, alone.  Or the loving one who turns out to be married. Men who want to be seeing other people too.  Poor Anya. She finishes with a declaration to her one true love, herself, an ode the act of…self-loving. Audience participate in the finale, tickling her piano, ending with a bang – a shower of glittering heart-shaped confetti, and a standing ovation from her smitten-audience.

Anya is an outstanding cabaret performer, and you should see her at any opportunity, catch her for her last show this weekend in Melbourne.  Please come back soon, Anya!

– Christian
Christian G.  is an international man of mystery; lover of books, cats and the performing arts; moonlighting as a finance professional by day.

Rogue Romantic runs 23 to 25 June 2016 at The Space Dance & Arts Centre. Buy tickets now.
The venue is not accessible.

Read our guide to the best acts of the 2016 Melbourne Cabaret Festival.

Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of Anya Anastasia.
Photo credit: Anya Anastasia.