Act One: Jazz Noir, by Bremner Duthie
Act Two: RADIO STAR, by Tanya O’Debra
Directed by Peter James Cook
Original Music by Andrew Mauriello
Review by Kitty Drexel
(Cambridge) Lo-Fi Lowdown was an homage to the Noir style and the art that it inspires. The first half of the performance was a jumping jazz concert lead by Bremner Duthie and his combo. The second half belonged to Tanya O’Debra and her one-woman radio play Radio Star. Together these two halves complied a fresh evening of cabaret and Foley fun.
Duthie is an energetic frontman but the audience on Sunday evening was decidedly somber. The band was in excellent form performing a fine selection of morose jazz standards to a Tom Waits. Had the audience been in a better mood, there could have been dancing. It would have made a striking contrast against the looping reel of Noir images projected onto the wall as Duthie sang.
The draw for this cynical audience was the evening’s star, Tanya O’Debra. Her spirited performance of Radio Star coaxed the audience into attentive laughter. She nimbly switched between 9 different character voices while maneuvering vocal sound effects as well as performing her own Foley. If one wasn’t impressed with her acting ability, her multi-tasking would surely do the trick.
The script is not family-friendly and neither is O’Debra’s wit. This mystery show is naughty, chock full of single entendres (Example: we had sexual intercourse, if you know what I mean) and not intended for the young or the easily offended. Between the horrifying puns and the insensitive jokes about rape and domestic abuse, one had best check their modesty, with their coat, at the door.