Edinburgh Fringe 2014
Comedy, song and burlesque of the very highest order all on the same stage headed by a mistress of the genre.
Let’s make this very clear: if you buy a ticket for Kitty Cointreau’s BraHaHa, you are guaranteed a wonderful show. While Kitty herself is expert at working those tassles, it’s easy to assume that her offstage persona is equally adept at networking, full stop: the guest acts at a BraHaHa always make an audience feel like they’ve managed to arrive on the night with the top line-up.
Kitty herself has a dazzling persona: whilst it’s her name on the posters, she wisely manages to remain an enigma throughout, getting others to introduce the acts for her. It’s an impressive example of having enough ego to not allow her ego to run rampant. Tonight, it’s Phil Ellis, always in command of his audience, and pleasurably making it all look like this is all the easiest thing in the world. He’s got the audience relaxed and cheering within seconds. On this occasion, Kitty Cointreau appears twice, saving her signature act, full of glitter and sparkle, til last, when she wows her audience into awed submission. The audience at a BraHaHa are always strongly encouraged to whoop and cheer as loudly as they can, but if we’re honest, it’s difficult to make too much noise when your mouth is hanging open in admiration (that’s admiration, you filthy beggar: keep your mind out of the gutter, this is a respectable burlesque night. Well, perhaps not that respectable).
One highlight of the evening was Vendetta Vain, mixing an act that was both sexy and truly hilarious with a cheese-based set that was genuinely great (and grater – although some men in the audience may have winced slightly as she mixed her winding with her cheese rind). Apart from the Burlesque and stand-up comedy, there were the extremely hot tickets of Red Bastard and Frisky And Mannish, both of whose acts you’d be hard pressed to get a ticket for.
In short, then, it’s always going to be worth your while getting along to a BraHaHa, even if you don’t know who the line-up is before you go in. Cheeky, gloriously fun and sexy? Corset is.