14 February 2018

Review: Siblings

Mikelangelo and Anushka
13 February 2018
The Butterfly Club
to 18 February

Anushka and Mikelangelo

Once upon a time, nearly 50 years ago, Mikelangelo existed before Anushka was in this world, but it was only for a short time – and his song about his time before having a sister is a magnificent tale of passion, mystery and balancing the contradictory advice of farmyard animals.

Once his sister was born, a new storyteller entered the family of musicians and storytellers, and every now and then, we are lucky to see them perform together.  

Siblings is a new work presented by The Butterfly Club, the kitchest and grooviest venue in town that supports new cabaret, new ideas, emerging and established artists, and the obvious idea that shows should have a matching cocktail. It doesn't matter what show you see, because it's always worth a visit  to explore the op-shop explosion of glorious tchotchke. (If the framed applique cat tea-towel ever goes missing, it will be me.)

With perfectly-quiffed Mikelangelo in a wide-striped black suit and cowboy shirt, and long-blonde Anushka in the soft greens from a rainbow and the gold found at the end of the bow, it's easy to slip into a world where women can escape glass boxes, the man in moon's cravat is always stylish, and fleeing the amorous determination of water nymphs on geese is expected.

With the very-hip and laid-back support of Dave Evans on accordion and piano, the siblings share and sing surreal stories that are so original and detailed that they are likely to be true. From the contents of a fridge stocked by their Croatian father to ensure that his family never suffer the starvation and need he grew up with to Anushka wondering how her children came to be, it's a work about the love of family, whether they are with us or not.

As Mikelangelo says, family remind us of what we love about ourselves – and those things that we'd maybe like to ignore – so we should never forget that love doesn't have to come from far away.

Siblings is delightfully original and loving, and the intimacy of The Butterfly Club (get in early to be up the front) and the genuine love between the performers and their love for their audience ensures that it takes moments to feel like we're all members of the family (and want a bowl Neopolitan ice cream).

Tickets are selling quickly because Melbourne knows how wonderful they are, so booking is recommended.

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