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Fringe reviews: Music & cabaret

Amy G:

Entershamement

Underbelly Bristo Square

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With kazoos buzzing from more orifices than kazoos normally visit, Amy Gordon brings a whole new dimension to three-part harmony.

She is at this point knickerless - to facilitate easier kazoo accommodation - and has started her show by divesting herself of various instruments of padding, including burst water balloons whose spillage allows her to dry the floor manically while pleading innocence to charges of obsessive perfectionism.

If the physical evidence by now shows that Gordon might well sing I Who Have Nothing with conviction, as well as a voice to rival Dame Shirley Bassey's, the talent at her disposal is no small consideration.

Indeed, Gordon is a dynamo, a Vaudeville song and dance act par excellence brought into the modern age with great energy.

Her roller skating may initially resemble Olive Oyl's first rink trip but quickly becomes a physical wonder, splits 'n' all, before morphing into a tap dance and a roving, ukulele-accompanied Sweet Georgia Brown - all with skates on.

Up close and personal doesn't begin to cover the shenanigans in a full-on, shamelessly entertaining, late-night madhouse.

English Cabaret Hour

C south

There's something charmingly quaint about this show. It's possibly the sort of entertainment that families once put on in the parlour for house guests, or even themselves, before television's arrival.

And yet it's 21st-century savvy, with mum addressing celebrity in her songs at the piano, a flute-playing daughter performing her own bake-off, complete with cupcakes for the audience, and son considering the effects of internet fame like a young Patrick Moore interviewing yer snotty YouTube pompous know-it-all - all played by himself.

Jeremy Paxman, Dusty Springfield and Georgie Fame all receive nicely sung, well observed tributes and the cupcakes help to fuel the trek back home.

Guilty Secrets

C nova

DO you have guilty secrets? Well, your secret guilt's no secret any more once Vicky Arlidge starts.

Her own foibles as well as the audience's are exposed in a pretty comprehensive overture to a part cabaret show, part family relationship workshop.

Arlidge has the confident delivery of someone who has attained 30,000 YouTube hits and a Glastonbury slot and comes across as a with-it teacher who isn't averse to discussing bodily functions and her marriage.

The audience participation sequence, as with quite a lot of the show, is probably best enjoyed if you're on a night out with the girls. The script and songs don't quite sustain the show's early momentum but it's an enjoyable diversion all the same.

All end today

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Arts and Entertainment

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