By: Mar. 16, 2016
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Reviewed by Barry Lenny, Saturday 12th March 2016

As the Adelaide Fringe nears the end for another year there are still some shows running until Sunday, and WOMADelaide runs until Monday, as that is a public holiday in South Australia. Adelaide's home of cabaret, and creators of the Cabaret Fringe that runs at the same time as the Cabaret Festival, in June each year, La Bohème, is hosting two performances only of Sylvia Brécko Is Doing It Her Way. Sylvia Brécko has been a television presenter in Germany, but also sings, and plays piano and ukulele, combining these skills into cabaret productions. She has been visiting Australia since 2004, but this is only her second time performing at the Adelaide Fringe.

Avoiding the European winter by visiting Australia is not a new thing for Brécko, but she has been combining it with performing cabaret, which this year gives her an excuse to visit Adelaide and sample our wines and food. She is a smart lady. She is a most personable performer, chatting to the audience like old friends, and seeming as relaxed as if that were truly the case.

There is some non-confrontational audience involvement but, such is her friendly manner and cheeky approach, her victims go with her willingly, and leave laughing, along with the rest of the audience. With so much on around the city, it was not quite a full house, but those who made it were enthusiastic, and Brécko gave it her all.

The comedy was light and fun, often making fun of herself, with no deep and meaningful morals, just laughs giggles and songs. A good many people attending, when asked, turned out to be speakers of German, but it didn't make a lot of difference as the few songs in German and French were explained in advance.

All in all, it was a very pleasant hour, more cabaret than Kabarett on this occasion, with very clever and funny lyrics to her songs, some original and some parodies, and a good healthy dose of charm and cheer. Add to that her very fine singing voice, and the limited choreography permitted by the intimate stage, and there you have an hour that greatly pleased a receptive group of people who smiled, laughed and applauded throughout.


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