In a taste tester performance of the Bombshell Entertainment brand, Katherine Rodrigues, launched her Marilyn Monroe inspired show at The Village Theatre, Sanctuary Cove earlier this month.
The ninety minute show was in three acts, with the first being a segment from her main show BLONDE by Bombshell – a Marilyn tribute show with musical numbers from the 40s and 50s, complete with dancing sailors… hello boys.
Although the dancing boys seemed a little over zealous to be considered smoulderingly sexy, Rodrigues more than made up for that with her Marilynesque characterisation, vocals, and va-va-voom physique. Her charming number ‘I Wanna Be Loved by You’, was faultless and I’m sure equal parts enjoyable and awkward for some of the male audience members in the front role who got some up, closer, and personal time with Ms Monroe.
The second act showcased the Bombshell burlesque show, which was entertaining and visually engaging with the addition of corseted female dancers. Burlesque chair routines never disappoint, and this was no exception. I don’t know why chair dances are so sexy but I’ve always wanted to do one to the tune of ‘Big Spender’, and one day I will be drunk enough at karaoke to be able to tick that one off my bucket list… but I do digress.
The third act was part cabaret, part covers band, in which Rodrigues sang with a live band – The Bullets. This is where the Marilyn character didn’t quite gel with me. As Rodrigues recounted personal stories about the trials and tribulations of her love life, I couldn’t quite work out whether she was telling them as Marilyn or as herself, who just happened to be still dressed as Marilyn. The look also didn’t seem to gel with the contemporary songs such as Britney’s ‘Toxic’, Adele’s ‘Rumour Has It’, and Sia’s ‘Titanium’. However, credit must be given to Rodrigues, as she belted out these powerhouse numbers and won the audience over with her impressive vocals. While the songs earlier in the night were purposely whispy and held back to recreate that signature Marilyn quality, this act really showcased Rodrigues as an accomplished singer with incredible agility, control, and power.
I must mention there were some sound issues that let down the quality of this production. Earlier in the show the backing track overpowered out the whispy tones of Marilyn at times, but the addition of the live band amplified the problem, even with Rodrigues’ formidable contemporary voice.
Peppered throughout the show were video interview segments of Rodrigues explaining the story behind the show, her journey as a performer, and promoting the show as an opportunity to create paid work for Brisbane and Gold Coast performers. Although this was an interesting addition to the launch, the segments were a little long. Some prudent editing here would keep the pace galloping along.
The stage was uncomplicated and effective for touring with a star-studded backdrop and a small risen platform along the back of the stage with some steps leading down to stage level in the middle.
Overall, the eclectic show had enough variety to suit everyone’s tastes and suitably showcased the Bombshell entertainment brand with three very different shows to suit different entertainment venues and audiences.
Featuring musical direction from Joel Nicholas Curtis, with choreography from Rebecca Louise Skinner and Michelle Wriggles, Bombshell is available for theatrical tours and corporate events.