Michael Griffiths: Cole

Michael Griffiths is obscenely talented. Over the years, he’s appeared at the Fringe with shows sell-out shows celebrating the music of Madonna and Annie Lennox, but this year, in something of a departure, Griffiths is tackling the songs of Cole Porter. Perhaps not so much of a departure though as Both Ms Lennox and Madge are undeniable gay icons whose music has influenced more than one generation; Cole Porter did all that and more over 70 years ago.

Michael Griffiths has created a show that I’m sure Mr Porter would have declared de-lovely.

Cole is a love letter to one of the great American songwriters. Griffiths plays Porter with the charm and wit to be expected from the man who penned Let’s Do It (Let’s Fall in Love), Anything Goes and De-Lovely and so many other hit songs between the 20’s and 60’s. With only a piano, a decanter and an impeccably mannered performance, Griffith embodies the great Cole Porter and regales us with tales of his life, career, loves and losses.

Griffiths skill as an actor is undeniable, he smoothly characterises Porter even when going off script to engage with the audience or to drop a pithy comment on the weather. His performance is delightful and perhaps the closest thing one could get to experience an audience with Cole Porter. At the end of the rapturous applause, Griffiths sheds his double breasted jacket and the persona to thank us for attending and gives us a much-demanded encore.

I certainly hope that the audience who flocked to see Griffiths in the last few years at the Fringe take the time to see this show. Cole Porter may be a very different artiste than Annie Lennox or Madonna but he’s earned his place in the canon of iconic and influential performers of the modern age and Michael Griffiths has created a show that I’m sure Mr Porter would have declared de-lovely.

Reviews by Frodo Allan

Underbelly, Cowgate

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★★★
Heroes @ Dragonfly

Twonkey’s Night Train to Liechtenstein

★★★★
Laughing Horse @ City Cafe

Mat Ricardo vs the World

★★★★★
Laughing Horse @ The Place

How to Be a Bad Girl

★★★★★
Gilded Balloon Teviot

Bowjangles: Excalibow

★★★★★
Voodoo Rooms

Nerd Time's a Charm

★★★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

He's inhabited the songs of Annie Lennox and Madonna to great acclaim, now Australian cabaret performer Michael Griffiths explores the colourful life and timeless songs of Cole Porter. Hedonism, grave misfortune, enduring love and a legacy that sparkles with wit and wisdom – sometimes anything goes! Including You're The Top, It's De-Lovely, Let's Do It and Night and Day. Winner Best Cabaret Adelaide Fringe Weekly Award 2016. 'There have been many tributes to Cole Porter's life, but Cole must rank as one of the best' ***** (GlamAdelaide.co.au). #madeinadelaide