You Give Me Fever, the Phaedra Cabaret

It is with a plethora of “well”s with which this show must be described: well written, well performed, well timed and very well done. Phaedra, or “Fey” as she prefers to be known, entered the stage in a slinky, bright red dress, with a waterfall of curls, accompanied only by her jazz guitarist and a trolley full of spirits for cocktails.

it was captivating throughout, funny when it needed to be but always with a tinge of sadness and depth to brilliantly performed Phaedra

Hidden away on the top floor of the Broadway Lounge, this tiny gem is certainly worth more attention than the twenty-person venue would allow. Whether you’re familiar with the tragic Greek tale or simply want to attend for the music, this show will not disappoint on any level.

The story was delivered hilariously, with all the sass of a Golden Era dame and intentionally interrupted by our storyteller’s need for a “top up”. Our host’s vocal range was stunning, which was hardly surprising for someone with such impressive musical theatre credentials as Pippa Winslow. The jazz guitarist was exceptionally accomplished and held the room at exactly the right moments, while letting his companion take the limelight when it was hers.

This almost universal story of disastrous families and even more disastrous love affairs surpassed the centuries in which this performance straddled but was never once confused or disorderly, even after all the cocktails.

Every detail was attended to, there was even a Greek-inspired cocktail menu in the programme. This piece would be right at home in a hundred-seater music hall but equally we felt like the lucky few as the host, and star, paraded her intimate stage, looking out lovingly at those who had gathered to listen.

Paper Wings was a particularly delightful rendition and it was hard not to click along to the show’s namesake You Give Me Fever. Such an interesting presentation of an ancient myth, it was captivating throughout, funny when it needed to be but always with a tinge of sadness and depth to brilliantly performed Phaedra.

A true ode to the greats, the Greeks and the jazz queens of the Golden Era, all that remains to be said is: of all the gin joints in all the towns, in all the world, we were glad she walked into ours.

Reviews by Bethan Troakes

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The Blurb

It’s one for my baby and one more for the road in this cocktail of Jazz standards and storytelling. A new take on an old tragedy, with a twist. Playwright/director Jack Lynch returns to Brighton Fringe after bringing 'Emily Dickinson & I: The Journey of a Portrayal' which continued to tour the UK, Europe and North America to great critical acclaim. West End actress and singer Pippa Winslow ('The Sound of Music', 'The Phantom of the Opera') will be appearing as 'Fey'. Her last solo cabaret garnered five-star reviews. Guitarist James Shannon accompanies on Jazz guitar.

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