Review: Club Swizzle

Club Swizzle Presented by Adelaide Festival Centre and La Soirée

Psssst sorry little people this ones for the big people, because they gotta have fun sometimes too!

Enter Club Swizzle, an immersive experience where the theatrical world and a dark, hazy nightclub wonderland cross paths. A place to make a one-night-only’s worth of bad decisions, while the babysitter takes one for the team.

This is not merely a theatre, forget the fourth wall, it is long gone and broken in Club Swizzle. Here, the audience and show become one for an irresistibly devious evening. The audience are swung into character as soon as they enter the room to find they are able to order a cocktail from a wood paneled central bar. Suddenly, with a clever design flip and a quick wipe down, the central cocktail bar transforms into a stage, and the cocktail-twirling bartenders turn out to be acrobatic troupe The Swizzle Boys.

Club Swizzle aims to reject none, astound all, and shock some with its fast paced theatrical experience. Reuben Kaye, winner of Best Cabaret Show at the Adelaide Fringe 2017, leads the audience through the delightful mayhem, while Mikey and the Nightcaps provide a live soundtrack. Cabaret and burlesque performer Laurie Hagen drunkenly stumbles on stage and manages to perform a striptease which segues to a more impressive reverse striptease. These feats are followed by a comedian who performs a surprising trick with rubber bands, and an amateur pole-dancing competition overseen by Kaye himself.

While trawling the Internet to read some pre show reviews (as you do) I read a line, which said ‘club swizzle lacks the fizzle’. This left me unexcited and expectant of a performance, with the kind of fizz you get from a flat Coca Cola bottle, you know, the one rolling around the floor of your friends 1980 Toyota Corolla, with a label so old its sun-bleached pink. In retrospect the Club Swizzle, which dazzled and delighted before my eyes could be described as nothing less than a SIZZLE. The kind of sizzling you get when the waiter literally has to hold a serviette over your Mongolian beef hot plate to protect you from the spitting, hot third-degree burn sizzle. In the case of Club Swizzle it was protection from the cocktail spitting waiters or the prospect of being pulled on stage.

As the audience remained captivated and roared with laughter at every step of the show, I too shed a tear of laughter and gawked at the extraordinary acrobatic displays. The best line overheard during my eavesdropping of fellow audience members was ‘I should not have just got botox done, this is so fucking amazing, my face hurts!’. Botox or no botox this is not to be missed.

Club Swizzle is playing now at the Space Theatre in the Adelaide Festival Centre until the 31st of December, when they will host a special New Year’s Eve show and after-party.

*Suitable for ages 15 and up

Adelaide Festival Centre 

Club Swizzle

Instagram @clubswizzle

Photography by Jeffrey Feng, images provided by Adelaide Festival Centre