2019 Fringe Festival Review: Bernie Dieter’s Little Death Club

Who: Bernie Dieter, presented by Gluttony

Where: Wonderland Spiegeltent (Gluttony)

When: Until March 17

How much: $42 (see Fringe website for more details)

What would the Fringe be without a deliciously decadent Weimar-style cabaret? In this show, award-winning cabaret starlet Bernie Dieter (previously seen in East End Cabaret) takes centre stage and brings a troupe of weird and wonderful sideshow acts with her. Although not her very best work, Bernie Dieter’s Little Death Club is still a solid choice for those wanting a saucy, raunchy, outrageous night out.

The eponymous Dieter is easily the highlight of the show. She is a commanding presence in a jet-black bob and matching feathered bodysuit, shimmying and grinding her way across the stage and into the laps of the audience. In her trademark style, she had three audience members stroking her body (and each other) within five minutes of opening the show, before carrying her back onto the stage for a sexy dance number. Although her voice is strong and the musical numbers suitably inappropriate, they lacked the crude wit and brazenness of her previous hits in East End Cabaret. Still, Dieter is a delight to watch, and it’s well worth seeing her if you’ve never had the pleasure of encountering her before.

The supporting sideshow acts were all solid, but varied in quality. The genderbending ‘boylesque’ acrobat was marvelous, equal parts sensual and skilled, and the saucy firebreather brought some delightful energy. I was a little less enamored with the bearded lady’s gag of spilling food all over herself, and although I appreciated the sentiment of the plastic sex doll stripping down to a naked punk feminist, the execution was a little confusing at times.

Overall, this is still a good night out if you want a sexy, bawdy, colourful cabaret show, and Dieter is a fantastic character to see as always.

3.5 out of 5 stars

Tamika Glouftsis

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