Saturday, July 6, 2013

Review: (Toronto) Erotic Tales From the Old Testament

The Gospel According to Lilith
by Colette Shaw

Inque and Quille’s production is basically a burlesque cabaret hosted by Lilith (Emily Schooley). In a nice twist on history, (or “herstory” as Lilith says) Lilith is the person telling the actual tales: she introduces a (usually) woman from the Old Testament, who then comes in to perform her act. Most of the acts are burlesque, but there is also singing, belly dancing, and even magic. If you want to learn much detail beyond the names of Old Testament women this is not the show for you, but if you want to watch ladies dance and take off most of their clothes, you’re in the right place.

The venue is not in the St. George the Martyr Church, but in a courtyard (a garden locked?) outside. The audience sits on the ground (bring a pillow or blanket if you can: I managed to find a friendly person willing to share). The space is beautiful, and I found it surprising and exciting to see burlesque in natural light. The acts happen both in the wide centre aisle and on the small stage at the west end of it: if you want to avoid the (minimal) audience interaction, just don’t sit on the aisle. There is both live (Jaimie McClyment and band) and recorded music, and a shockingly smooth transition between them considering the outdoor venue. I also noticed projections on the wall behind the stage at one point, but they were hard to see (particularly earlier in the show) and didn’t seem important. Unsurprisingly for burlesque, the costumes were beautiful. I think my favourite act (and costume: maybe because there was so much of it?) was Erin Reece singing torch songs as Hagar.

There is only one performance left of the Erotic Tales, Saturday July 6 at 8:00 pm.

Erotic Tales of the Old Testament has one more show - tonight at 8 pm

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