For most of her life, Veronica Bailey has been surrounded by classical music. The 29…
Rouge is circus—but not as you know it—and will bring a performance packed with adults-only twists and turns when it comes to Canberra Theatre Centre.
Issy Hart’s Instagram bio reads: ‘Opera singer and law student’.
But it could also include burlesque and circus artist, globe trotter and boundary-pushing soprano. So far Issy has performed on stages across the world—including in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival—but also on mountaintops, quarries, silos and cliff edges.
It’s this edge (pun intended) that Issy will bring to adults-only cirque show Rouge when it comes to Canberra Theatre Centre from 23-26 October. On stage, she’ll be joined by a tight-knit team of performers whose repertoires span acrobatics, burlesque, physical comedy, cabaret and more.
But with a show description that includes the warnings of obscene language, nudity, strobe lighting and fog effects, it’s safe to say this isn’t your average circus.
Styled in the format of a European-style cabaret variety night, Rouge gives its audience a tasting platter of artforms (think risqué burlesque, fire twirling and even whip cracking) within a pulse-raising non-stop format.
“Variety nights will often have comedians and circus performers and musicians and beat poets and it’s all a beautiful mix of different people,” explains Issy. “There is some extraordinary talent in our show.”
“It’s fun, sexy, beautiful and irreverent but the only thing that you need to do is come ready for a good time and we’ll take care of the rest.”
Growing up in Melbourne with European parents, Issy says her family home was full of music and theatre, sparking a keen interest in the arts.
“There was a lot of music and I saw a lot of international performers—we went to all the musicals and I always felt really connected to that. Music is such a powerful way to express emotion and feelings and communicate ideas.”
“My favourite form of classical singing is called an ‘art song’ which is generally poetry set to music. Opera is so beautiful and it’s such an amazing, gorgeous expression of sound—but art songs are so dense and textured.”
Rouge’s audience will be treated to one of Issy’s art songs, as well as an operatic aria, however, Issy is tight-lipped as to which it will be. As she puts it; “I think it’s best to give no spoilers.”
In addition, Issy will also be providing jazz and “bluesey rock” numbers throughout Rouge, as well as performing in dance numbers and physical theatre acts.
“I’m even a ‘back-up-dancer-holding-fire’ at one point,” she laughs. If that’s not something to put on your bio, I don’t know what is.
When: 23-26 October
Where: Canberra Theatre Centre
Tickets: $49.90-59.90 + bf
This editorial was created in partnership with Canberra Theatre Centre. For more information on sponsored partnerships, click here.