Brisbane Festival Review: Enter the mad cap world of Strut & Fret’s FUN HOUSE

Making its world premiere at Brisbane Festival, FUN HOUSE is a vibrant mix of circus acts, dance, and vaudevillian comedy, helmed by a unicorn and a bunny – who else?!

It’s been (perhaps a little awkwardly) marketed as an all ages show, presented as a family friendly sister act to Strut & Fret’s other Brisbane Festival offering LIMBO Unhinged. And, rest assured, it’s every bit as riotous and joyful as you’d expect a show centering around the slow invasion of huge bouncy castles to be.

For those familiar with the current trend for these cabaret circuses, there’s not much performance wise that you haven’t seen before – excellent and polished as it is. But, like the 1970s inspired Velvet or the Correspondents scored Fear & Delight, it’s how FUN HOUSE presents them that really makes it stand out.

With a soundscape that taps into old Hollywood, contemporary pop, and a gorgeous musical interlude from Milena Strackzynski and her ukulele, Strut & Fret’s latest is an absolute delight. It’s a night packed with bright colours, Disney remixes, dance routines, crazy juggling antics (courtesy of Kyle Driggs, direct from Broadway) and perfectly timed lip syncs.

That said, it’s a little disappointing that all those bouncy castles don’t get more of a workout during the show. With so many giant inflatables slowly filling the space, FUN HOUSE was never going to fall flat (see what I did there?), but the bright, cheesy core of this bright, cheesy evening don’t really seem to serve much of a purpose beyond filling time between performances.

A wacky, sugar rush of a show, FUN HOUSE is best enjoyed with a stick of fairy floss, a glass of sparkling wine, and a friend who will happily join you in yelling the words to Andrew WK’s We Want Fun.

Continuing Strut & Fret’s signature line of vivid and exciting cabaret, FUN HOUSE has now finished its Brisbane Festival season. But never fear, BrisFest goers –  you can catch its (very grown up) sister show, LIMBO Unhinged, at the Spiegeltent until September 30th!

Reviewer attended September 21st performance.

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