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There’s tonnes of cracking cabaret to look forward to in the coming months. Here are Jason Reid’s top picks…

 


Bette Rinse: It’s a Knockout! 

Halfway to Heaven

Every Tuesday, 9pm. Runs until 4th October. Free entry.

Yes you read that correctly, the queen that retired from drag last year has been resurrected. She wasn’t dead, just resting in the suburbs. For one month only, Bette will preside over her beloved “It’s a Knockout” competition at Central London’s campest drag den.

Bette elaborated on the reason for her return when we met for a sugary brew and a chocolate finger last week: “Well they begged me to come back, dear! The phone was ringing day and night. Honestly, when you’re in demand you just have to cave in to public demand sometimes. Oh my life is so hard, dear. Of course I jest, the competition has been my baby since it began so I was over the moon to be asked back to host. There’ll be mentors, challenges, eliminations, guest judges and most importantly six fabulous acts, all with their eyes on this year’s title. I mean, dear, you’d be a fool to miss all that, wouldn’t you?”

Looking to follow in the sparkly footsteps of last year’s winner, Chamonix Aspen, will be Krystal Ball, Marsha Mallow, Ruby Galore, Ripley and Woe Adamms. Snap a lash, girls!


 


Virgin’s Religious Experience Xtravaganzah

Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club

Friday 16th September, 8.30pm. £6 Adv/£8 OTD

Get ready to strut with the mother of gawd for a night of kaleidoscopic variety. Having now established herself as one of the fastest rising stars on the cabaret circuit, Virgin will no doubt be serving up a performance and look that will be a treat for all the senses. Guests include: Katrina Darling, Phil Ingund, Lily Sntachdragon and DJ TeTe Bang.

Andrew Burt, the man behind The Virgin Xtravaganzah, told me how the unique character originated: “Growing up as a small town gay boy in rural America, and raised Catholic, I always had a penchant for female icons in pop culture. Whether that be The Wicked Queen from Snow White, or Tori Amos, the ‘strong and powerful female’ was always the archetype I was most attracted to. So, there she was, every Sunday, looming down from the altar: The Virgin Mary in all her splendour.  But where was her strength? Her fire? Her power? It was my desire to see one of my ‘leading ladies’ come to life in a new, powerful, and reinvented way that led me to create The Virgin Xtravaganzah as we now know her.
Praise be.”


 


Miss Hope Springs: Live at Zedel 

The Crazy Coqs at Brasserie Zédel 

28th Sept, 15th Oct, 24th Nov. £25

A gorgeous venue for a charming and very talented internationally acclaimed artist. Miss Hope Springs plays the piano and sings self-penned songs whilst weaving a thread of engaging anecdotes into every performance. This must see show written by Ty Jeffries is a beautifully produced piece of escapism.

 



David Hoyle: Metadata

The Royal Vauxhall Tavern

Every Thursday. 29th Sept – 27th Oct. £15

If you have never seen a David Hoyle show, now is the perfect opportunity to rectify the error of your ways. Don’t ponder on it, just do it! Why am I so enthusiastic? Well, because he is quite simply a force of nature onstage, brimming over with energy, inspiration and angst. In this all new limited season of shows at David’s spiritual home the RVT, you can expect a cabaret experience like no other. Special guests include: Bourgeois and Maurice, Fred Bear, Fancy Chance, Lucy McCormick and Son Of a Tutu.

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