A post-apocalyptic afterparty: ‘Retro Futurismus, New World’ at 45downstairs

Thanks for keeping art in the CBD interesting, fortyfivedownstairs. ‘Retro Futurismus, New World‘ opened this weekend and I’m still trying to figure out how to describe it. Anni and Maude Davey call their show a ‘post-apocalyptic after party.’ They smash together music, burlesque, performance art, spoken word, and dance to create a night of off the wall visuals and things that make you go ‘hummmmm….’


It was a breath of fresh air to attend an experimental performance that would make me think twice before inviting Nana. The production brings together five performers — Anni & Maudie Davey, Anna Lumb, Gabi Barton, Teresa Blake with guest artist Azaria Universe — each with their own unique style. A personal highlight was a nuts dance number that began in a full-body foam starfish suit.

In the second act, all the scene changes are done in astronaut costumes. Given that these same outfits feature in an antigravity piece later in the evening, it could have just been for costume change efficiency. But I say the more stage crew dressed in space suits, the better!


While accurate, I’m hesitant to use terms like ‘avant-garde’ and ‘performance art’ to describe production. (For me, it conjures up painful fringe drama student shows featuring an abundance of self-indulgence and little else.) Fortunately, the Daveys have a handle on their own particular brand of weird. If you’re not hopping on the roller-skating, giant slinky, gold lamé ‘Retro Futurismus’ ride, you’re missing out.

– Jenny
Jenny Schmidt is an event addict. When she’s not attending live shows, you can find her sampling the latest craft beer or sipping a creative cocktail.

Retro Futurismus, New World runs 6-31 July 2016 at fortyfivedownstairs (45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne). Purchase tickets.

Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of TS Publicity.
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