Review: Little Death Club

This deliciously subversive cabaret is a rallying cry from the raucous depths

cabaret review (edinburgh) | Read in About 2 minutes
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Little Death Club. Image: Ayesha Hussain
Published 10 Aug 2018

“We’re being told that difference is something to be afraid of,” says Bernie Dieter—an award-winning star bringing more than a touch of Weimar Berlin to the Fringe—at the end of this deliciously defiant punk cabaret show. “Here at the Little Death Club, we fucking celebrate it.”

In the glittering shadows of Beauty, Circus Hub’s little top, a Spiegeltent of dark, subversive delights awaits. If you’re thinking of going for some casual titillation, think again. Yes, there’s nudity – but this is a roll call of acts with razor-sharp intention.

Whether it’s a fucked-off mime who just wants an actual box and some real rope, or drag legend Myra DuBois raising a perfectly arched eyebrow at millennials while massacring Chess duet ‘I Know Him So Well’ as a solo, there’s something for everyone.

Dieter, who performs as well as hosts, sets the tone. She’s wickedly funny and mesmeric to watch as she strides among the dumbfounded men (and women) of the audience. Dressed in feathered black, she pokes fun at dick pics. She makes sure that the only gaze that matters is hers. She owns the stage.

Each act is hugely entertaining—and often wow-worthy—while upending expectations: hula hoop extraordinaire Jess Love’s surly on-stage persona works as a constant send up of the stereotypically sequinned costume she’s in; a male trapeze artist steps out of a dress for a hauntingly beautiful sequence.

With Dieter in charge, Little Death Club is a rallying cry from the raucous depths of cabaret. All you can do is cheer.