“Excuse me, I’m Madonna, the most famous b*tch on the planet. Shut. Up.”
All Michael Griffiths needs is a grand piano, some Madonna tunes, a microphone and a spotlight and voila!, you’ve one hell of a show.
As part of this year’s Midsumma Festival, Griffiths will be performing In Vogue: Songs By Madonna (written and directed by Dean Bryant, who also wrote and directed Christie Whelan’s Midsumma jaunt Britney Spears -The Cabaret) at fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne from today, Wednesday 18 January, and it’s definitely a show not to miss this year.
This controversial smash hit of the 2011 Adelaide Cabaret Festival sees Michael Griffiths become Madonna -no accent, costume or wig – just ‘Madge’ accompanying herself at the piano leading you on a journey through her tough life and tender songs.
“A Madonna tribute would traditionally suggest I wear a gold conical brassiere, blonde wig and BE her. Or that I, as Michael, tell stories like ‘when I was six, my mother bought me ‘Holiday’ on vinyl…’ This is not that kind of show”, Griffiths told AussieTheatre.com.
“It’s an exercise in camp in a lot of ways – it’s like an alternate reality, really. Yes, it’s about her life, but it’s also about giving her credit as a song writer. I speak as Madonna in the first person, but I sit behind a grand piano and play all the music myself”, he laughed.
Griffiths, a veteran of the Australian musical theatre scene, has performed in blockbuster musicals Jersey Boys, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, We Will Rock You, and the original production of Shout!.
Griffiths explains that while this gender-bending explosion of powerful pop is not your run-of-the-mill ‘tribute’, Dean Bryant has cleverly written a cabaret in the truest form.
“It’s a cabaret show in the most simple, strict and traditional sense. It’s stories told through cabaret and song. I don’t just chat, do a song, chat, sing a song… it’s all very integrated. There are 35 different Madonna tunes used in the show in some form”, said Griffiths who is also a classically trained pianist.
So get yourselves to fortyfivedownstairs this January to see the incredible Michael Griffiths in action. This beautiful stranger will take you through the ups and downs of his Madonna CD collection (yes, every CD in the poster belongs to him, and that’s just the start!) in a guaranteed great night out!
In Vogue: Songs By Madonna
Written and Directed by Dean Bryant
Featuring Michael Griffiths
Midsumma Festival Season Wednesday, 18 – Saturday, 28 January 2012
Wed 18 – Sat 21 8pm
Wed 25 & Fri 27 9.30pm
Thu 26 & Sat 28 7.30pm
fortyfivedownstairs45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne