BWW REVIEW: Trevor Ashley Looks Back On Two Decades In The Industry With DOUBLE Ds: TWO DECADES OF DIVADOM, A Special One Off Concert
Saturday 22nd September 2018, 8pm, City Recital Hall
Larger than life ball of energy Trevor Ashley shares an intimate night of theatre to celebrate 20 years in the performing arts industry with his one off concert Trevor Ashley DOUBLE D'S: TWO DECADES OF DIVADOM. Supported by James Simpson's eight piece band, this is a wonderful night of cabaret and connection and of course some of Ashley's favourite divas.
With an appropriately flashy set of gold fringed curtain, last seen in Ashley's hit pantomime BODYBAG, and rock concert worthy lighting, the audience knows they are in for a night of fabulous fun presented with a touch of old world charm as Simpson's band evokes memories of the supper clubs of the 40s and 50s. DOUBLE D'S is two shows in one, catering to his broad audience appeal. For the one off concert the audience ranged from people that know Ashley from his musical theatre performances to those more familiar with his Drag acts, diva impersonations and pantomimes.
For the first half Ashley opens up with a more personal recount of his career, from nervous schoolboy going for his first audition after school, still in uniform, to getting noticed as having the talent to make an unusual Drag Queen - namely one who can also sing rather than the standard mime. He peppers stories of his musical theatre career with renditions of his character's famous songs, from Edna Turnblad's You Can't Stop The Beat to Master Of The House, presented with special guest Lara Mulcahy and some brilliant renditions of how his Diva's would do the songs of Jesus Christ Superstar. He also gives an insight into the loneliness of performing and being a drag artist, with a heartbreakingly honest and exposed rendition of George and Ira Gershwin's But Not For Me.
The second half of the evening is devoted to Ashley's alter ego Trashley and his female impersonations with a transformation taking place on stage to Jerry Herman and Harvey Fierstein's A Little More Mascara. As Ashley shares some of his favourite divas, he works through a series of wigs and sequined costumes. For the evening he also treats the audience to a new Diva he has added to his repertoire, the purring Eartha Kitt, and reminds the audience that as well as delivering a fabulous Liza Minnelli, he can also does a brilliant rendition of her mother Judy Garland.
Whilst Trevor Ashley DOUBLE D'S: TWO DECADES OF DIVADOM was initially a one off concert, hopefully Ashley will be able to fit a return concert into his busy schedule of directing, running a Production Company, creating new works and performing.