LIFE is ever-increasingly a cabaret on the Scottish arts circuit.
No longer a seedy genre likened to dodgy strip shows and even dodgier lounge singers, it’s now so popular a genre that it was added to the listings at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe — pointing to a fair number of cabaret fans in the country.
In fact, Glasgow is home to the world’s largest burlesque club, Club Noir — so it’s no surprise that the city has an up-and-coming cabaret festival too.
Now in its third year, the Glasgow cabaret festival is an eight day programme spread across the city, with weird and wonderful acts both home-grown and from further afield.
Highlights include Once Bitten, a twisted variety show appearing at Cottier’s on Saturday, starring ukulele-playing, panda-eyed maestro Desmond O’Connor (not that one) – whose original songs are perhaps too cheekily named to write in a family newspaper, but hysterical nonetheless.
Catch the performer then or at Vive le Cabaret an equally entertaining Fringe-born show on at the same venue next Thursday.
Heading down the hill, the Rio Café is hosting a festival special of its monthly Spangled Cabaret slot — described as the ‘handlebar moustache on the chiselled features of Partick’.
Expect spoken word poetry, performance and free doughnuts — not to mention the fact that the Monday night show is free and unticketed.
In the city centre, there’s a chance to catch Fringe darlings Frisky and Mannish in action. The duo receive rave reviews wherever they go, and have no doubt found the perfect venue in the Arches on Thursday and Friday (October 14 and 15).
And perhaps the biggest draw of the fest is An Evening of Burlesque — a big stage show from London’s west end, and perhaps the ideal introduction to the world of the striptease.
Songs, choreography, mischief and magic are the order of the day, with a bill that reads like a who’s who of London burlesque from Kiki Kaboom to Miss Slinky Sparkles (whose names alone merit applause).
Snap on the suspenders for a crash course in the world of cabaret at the Pavilion on Saturday, October 15, because this is one genre which is — quite literally —taking off.
n The Glasgow cabaret festival runs from October 8 until 16. For more info, visit www.glasgowcabaretfestival.com.