It's hard to believe that Queensland Cabaret Festival – Australia's first ever, and longest running, cabaret festival – was born 20 years ago.
It began as the Brisbane Cabaret Festival in 2000, which it was known as until 2013, and then became Queensland Cabaret Festival from that point on. It survived the Global Financial Crisis, the Brisbane floods of 2010 and will go ahead (safely) even in the same year as a pandemic.
With a 100 per cent Queensland contingent – including the likes of Ben Ely, Jenny Wynter, Tyrone Noonan and Sahara Beck – the festival will run across multiple venues this October-November.
“Like so many arts organisations and practitioners, we watched and waited through isolation to see what would become of us at the other side of lockdown,” Creative Director Alison St Ledger says. “But hey, we’ve been through a lot with this 'little festival that could' and we have the flexibility of the cabaret genre itself to make us robust.”
To celebrate two decades of 21st century cabaret there will be a special '20 Years Of The Cabfest' Gala in the Concert Hall of the Old Museum, with past and present performers.
Mistresses Of Ceremony, Babushka, will be joined by a cavalcade of Cabfest regulars and newcomers for a night of variety cabaret.
There will also be performances from Melissa Western, Leah Cotterell and Helen Russell, Matthew Semple, Tyrone Shoelaces (David Megarrity), Jenny Wynter, Alison St Ledger, Pearly Black, Greg Bird and Sandro Colarelli.
Ticket and programme information can be found here.
Queensland Cabaret Festival runs from 15 October-7 November.