Marmalade Inspired presents… 1930 Berlin Diary – Review by Gemma Crump
On Sunday the 8th of June, the public put on their dancing shoes, suits and 1930s fancy dress and headed down to Crystal Bar on Carver street for a night they would never forget.
1930 Berlin Diary is an account of Warren Peace’s time in 1930s Berlin. The show takes the audience back to a pre-Nazi Germany where Peace lived, worked and performed at Madame Lola’s Cabaret establishment. Throughout the evening we were transported back in time and introduced to a wide range of characters who entertained us all night long.
Arriving early I had the privilege of going back stage and meeting members of the cast while they got ready for the evening performance. There was a sense of excitement about the upcoming show with a healthy batch of nerves. I watched perplexed as preparations were made and makeup was applied. Rotherham College hair and media department’s tutors and students were hard at work preparing the performers and making them all look glamorous.
So many aspects of this show gave it an edge and set it apart from other touring performances. For one having artists, soldiers, magicians and popcorn girls encouraging the audience to get involved. This gave a good sense of immersion to the piece. I for one am still baffled by the French magician Benoit Pierre’s fascinating coin illusion trick which was flawless and incredible. A big hand must go to the Soft Dance Jazz Band who had us all dancing the night away until our feet ached.
The show itself went off smoothly. Although there were a few technical hiccups with the music, this did not faze the performers who stayed in character and used it as an opportunity for audience involvement. A fond moment of the night for me was when the music went down and so we had to sing the can-can for the audience members on stage. This added a comic value and had me in hysterics at the back of the audience.
The vast range and talent of the performers was unlike any show I have seen. There were moments when your breath caught in your throat at the sheer beauty of the dances. A good example of this was in Scarlet Butterfly and her astonishing control while dancing on a pole. I can only imagine the stamina and practice it takes to be that elegant.
There are many acts I could mention: the two funny clowns played by Jennie Swift and John Slater certainly made me laugh; all the way to Stella Overdrive who played Warren Peace’s feisty landlady. Warren himself was bursting with talent and comedy. However the man who stole the show was comedian Sam Skinny, with his hilarious weight lifter routine to his French comic act. There was not a person in the room who didn’t have a smile on their face.
After interviewing the audience at the interval it is clear the show was a hit.
- Quotes included “Brilliant”
- “fabulous show!”
- “Really good atmosphere”
- “It is the simple things that make this show so good”
- “The most bizarre thing to be doing on a Sunday night (in a good way)”
- “Best night out we have had in a long time”
The audience’s reactions speak for itself as this truly was a mind-blowing show. The company Marmalade Inspired in my opinion is going places. I highly recommend keeping up to date with future events and shows so that you don’t miss out on experiences such as this.
Major congratulations to the cast and crew that put the evening together and did such a good job. All the performers should be proud of themselves as well as backstage and all the volunteers that made it all a success. A truly amazing show, something that I would come and see over and over again. Well done!