Review: Unplanned Cabaret at The Factory Theatre

Review by Kipp Lee


Unplanned Melodies have gone all out making their show feel like a 1920s Cabaret to the point you almost expect Marlene Dietrich to emerge from behind the curtain. Every song performed is made up on the spot, based on audience suggestions, which this night included dogs, wine, bungees and carving.


Unplanned Melodies are a well established and extremely polished outfit sprung from Improv Theatre Sydney's musical improv class, under the guidance of Aria award winning, Bridie Connell Their years of working together show, with gel-like teamwork and unquestionable support. They have their format down pat, with barely a pause between each number. They slide from solos, duets and group numbers effortlessly guided by their MCs for the night Alex and Dani - who each get their turn in the spotlight. They layout the basics of improv - No thinking, no judgement.

They are accompanied by Sydney improv scene's staple Nick Harriott on keys. Nick perfectly sets the mood and works well with the team to create such unrepeatable bangers as "Angela Merkle (in me)", I" thought I was Godzilla" and of course his own origin story in a London magic shop. The Unplanned Melodies cast effortlessly switched between genres and characters, adapting to every stimuli no matter how ridiculous, from polyamory to hotboxing. At no point did the cast feel unbalanced, with everyone playing equally strongly in support and the spotlight. However Kate was a personal stand out with her bold characters and accents.


Its hard to review an entirely improvised cabaret because it can never be repeated. An outsider could not even begin to understand the complexities of a love song about a croissant (pronounced in the sexy way) or the comradery of the whole audience singing the chorus of "Pickles and Mayo (Mum!)".


No one can describe an improv show to someone who wasn't there and make it sound anything less than insane, so just make sure you're at the next one so you can witness it for yourself!


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