Review: Briefs

Meeting House Square

There are, if I’m honest, few shows in the Fringe I’d risk recommending to my mother: I didn’t expect Briefs to be the exception.

Yes, there is an act that rivals – nay, surpasses – that scene from The Crying Game, but at the heart of it, this “bunch of carnies and bearded trannies”, as ringmaster-cum-bearded lady Shivannah describes the Brisbane troupe, brings a night of old-school burlesque to the surprisingly salubrious setting of Meeting House Square in Temple Bar. It has all your old favourites, from plate-spinning (delivered with the deadest of pan) to incredible feats of rope swinging, and strongman antics from a mustachioed Johnny Domino. But, despite the amazing physical talent onstage – both in terms of skill and, ahem, aesthetics – it’s the off-the-cuff satire and brilliantly bitchy putdowns (“a three-car pile-up of Tina Turner, Donna Summer and the Flintstones”) that make this ostensibly “recockulous” show more than just a spectacle.

Until September 23rd.
Emma Somers

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