June 30, 2012

Carousel Cabaret June 2012

Carousel is back with a bang! Following a six month hiatus Carousel returned Friday night at their new home The San Francisco Bathhouse.

The place was packed. I'm not sure whether it was because people really missed Carousel or the excellent line up. Local burlesque personality Venus Starr, the shows producer, made her debut at Carousel. Also making appearances were the current Miss Burlesque NZ, Willow Noir; and first Miss Burlesque NZ, Miss la Belle; NZ's only burlesque troupe, The Alltogethers; and audience favourites Tinka Lovelocks; and The Magenta Diamond. The large number of people there meant the street was crowded (compounded by the narrow entrance) and inside it was difficult to see unless you had booked your tickets and therefore had a seat.

The San Francisco Bathhouse was certainly not big enough for the crowd.  If attendance stays at this level I hope Venus would consider a second show on the Saturday night; she did try it once before. However, towards the end of last year attendance was dwindling so this may be temporary spike. The huge space is not well laid out for a show. Everything was focused on the stage. The lounge area at the back could have been utilsed to give the ladies from Poleclass room to demonstrate (and not have a stream of people walking across their stage to access the bathrooms). The artist who was painting throughout the night may have had more chance to engage with the audience.

Everyone was excited to see Venus Starr perform. Her energy lit up the stage and her professionalism carried her though a wardrobe malfunction smoothly. I'm surprised these things don't happen more often, corsets are tricky things. I was not terribly impressed with The Alltogethers though they have improved since I saw them last; one smiled nervously through both acts which I kept focusing on. Their second act was better than the first but I would have preferred another performer twice. Miss la Belle impressed with highly detailed fans and a shiny wing/cape for a fan dance inspired by the movie Metroplis (thank you for pointing this out as I have never heard of it!). Willow Noir scandalised the audience with her title winning naughty nun act. The Magenta Diamond performed two strange acts with a creepy sweet little girl smile on her face. The messiest act of the night was a visual feast from Tinka Lovelocks the set up for which meant extra (dirty) jokes from the MC Pitor. Aesthetically this act was well placed but the logistics of the set up and clean up bored the audience, it may have been better placed at one side of a break.

Apart from getting a sore neck from straining to see, and sore feet from standing, it was a great night. And we even managed to raise money for charity. I'm already planning my outfit for next month. I'm so excited Carousel is back!

Venue: San Francisco Bathhouse
Date: Friday 29 June, 8pm
Price: $35


  1. and Andre Corey from poleclass demo was amazing! in his clothes!

  2. Miss la Belle's act was based on the film Metropolis, not birds haha

  3. It was a fab night, Great to have Carousel back!
    I agree on the layout of the venue not being correct we made a point of arriving early to get a good seat only to discover all seating was already booked i found this a bit fustraiting as you could only book seats if you were in a group of five or more i hope something better is sorted out for next time as its a long long night when you have to stand especialy if your wearing the highest of heels!

  4. Andre was impressive! I don't remember there ever being a pole act at Carousel (on stage). Has there been one?

  5. We were visiting Wellington from out of town and heard about the show. We were so hugely disappointed!! We arrived and paid the same door sale price as everyone else and found that most seating, a part from a small amount of booths where you couldn't see, were reserved. Upon asking, we were told that the reserved seating was for bookings made for groups of 5 or more?? As a visitor, this was not possible yet I paid the same price!!! I was also disappointed with the choreography........the art of tease became the art of snooze! Perhaps if seated, maybe the show may have better??? Not recommending to friends or family! The price was steep for a 'standing only' cabaret show!