November 2015 Show
Miss La Vida
Just like life, Miss La Vida is short, unpredictable and delivers the occasional kick in the balls. Known primarily for her burlesque Big Butts, not many know she is actually above average at quite a few things including: ukulele, dancing, Mcing and writing performer blurbs. She is very much looking forward to hosting November’s Menagerie in Wellington, her second favourite city to perform in.
Previous shows and events she has MCd (i.e.proof she is fabulous and sought after) – The 2014 New Zealand Burlesque Festival, Miss Pinup New Zealand 2012-2015, Tease & Trouble, Bombshell Burlesque, Cabaret L’Amour.
Clever, Felix, and Victor
Clever, Felix, and Victor are three of New Zealand’s top tassel twirling chaps. Seen in shows up and down the country, this is the first time they’ve shared the stage. Can three performers, three egos, and three sets of costume even fit on the Fringe Bar stage? Let’s find out.
Gary Krumbert, one of Lilly Loca’s most prolific characters, is the socially awkward but lovable geek who will pull at your heart strings and make you feel all tingly in all the right (or wrong) places. Having performed in Australia for the Australian Burlesque Festival and extensively around New Zealand, Gary’s awkward demeanor, exuberant dance moves, slapstick comedy and his ability to relate to his audience make him one of the most sought after drag king characters in the New Zealand burlesque scene.
“I was absolutely delighted when I met “Gary” for the first time – yet another character in Lilly Loca’s ever-changing wardrobe of faces. With his sexually awkward and nerdy demeanour, amidst bursts of outlandish thrusting dance moves, he had me giggling from the very beginning.” – Ivy D’Auton, Asphyxia Corsetry
First timer on the stage, Maureen DeMure is a shy flower determined not to bloom. Her hesitancy to finally showcase her skills on stage were finally overcome by a bet and an unwillingness to backdown – she’s sweet as candy but stubborn as a mule! Maureen hopes her natural shyness won’t hold her back on the night. Will she dare to unveil or will her courage fail?…
Jessie Fenton entered her first poetry slam by accident, and has kept going ever since just to hide her mistake. She’s part of Rising Voices up in Auckland and is competing in the Wellington regional slam this year, and when she’s not onstage telling a room full of strangers about her virginity, she spends her time in the supermarket, gazing longingly at expensive cereals.
Tess Munro Pedreros
Tess has been wowing crowds since her first impromptu performance, atop a table in a crowded Spanish restaurant at the tender age of two. Since then she’s tried everything from ballet to ballroom, hip-hop to kung-fu, flamenco to figure skating. Nowadays she dazzles audiences with her daring feats, dancing in the air, spinning hoops around her body, perching precariously on chairs and every now and then, tabletops in crowded Spanish restaurants.
Ruth Mundy is a singer-songwriter whose songs will simultaneously make you smile and break your heart. With folk, protest, and indie influences, Ruth combines frank lyrics with sweet melodies. Originally from the UK but loving New Zealand, Ruth has just finished recording her debut EP ‘Don’t Be A Monster’ and is enjoying performing in some of Wellington’s best loved institutions, including The Southern Cross, The Fringe Bar, and the Museum of Wellington City & Sea. She recently won the People’s Choice Competition to play at the Wellington Folk Festival 2015.
Ruth will be touring during the months ahead, sharing her heartfelt, honest, funny, political, and above all beautiful songs with audiences across New Zealand.
Finn is an emerging Wellington stand-up comic whose comedy contradicts his facial expressions. Recent awards include an audience member buying him a beer after a show. Maybe you could be that audience member?
Ms. Melody Riot
As a singer and actress, Melody’s lips have been there and done it all – in her younger years she lied and cheated her way to the bottom and now she’s adamant she’s going to scratch her way to the top of the underground, cuz that’s where she’s comfortable – on the ground and under someone!.
Early on there were hints of a gypsy lifestyle – she was found by the cleaner in an old-make up case backstage in Berlin. She still prefers to sleep in cramped spaces and doesn’t deny her fettish for being locked up!
A career of true highlights and low lows – Melody’s journey has taken her to many countries on the planet. She’s available to work for anyone, for anything anywhere except Las Vegas, New York and Los Angeles…she’s not allowed into those places anymore!
Rachel is the producer, curator and keeper of The Menagerie, a job she has been very happily doing for the past 2 years.
Rachel once got tear gassed at a wrestling match. She’ll tell this story at The Watercooler at Bats Theatre on Thursday the 12th of November, and the story will later be available on The Watercooler website: www.thewatercooler.co.nz under the title “Jet Planes”.
October 2015 Show
Miss Anthropy aka Hannah Tasker-Poland – professional dancer, actor, stunt performer and all-round dark, sexy, primal burlesque/fetish/performance artist.
Usually found covered in meat, ripping her tits off, dancing with fire or covered in paint or grime of some sort.
A reviewer once wrote ‘Hannah could wash dishes on stage for an hour and still be mesmerizing’. So she did.
This is Miss Anthropy’s second appearance at The Menagerie. The first time she had three boobs and a beard. This time, being All Hallows Eve, she’s in her element, and will be bringing one of her twisted signature acts, the likes of which is usually accompanied by the response ‘WHAT. THE. F*#K’. Enjoy.
The Crypt Kickers
The Crypt Kickers are a one-night-only band, they come together only on All Hallows Eve when a waning gibbons moon is in the sign of Cancer. They bring together 6 creatures of the dark; playing banjolele, ukulele, African thumb piano, clarinet, guitar, bass, accordian, and drums.
And they sing! Oh do they sing, they sing songs as they have never been sung before and stir the dead into life. Legend has it, if you sing along you too could be swept away with the band to live in the otherworld, trapped in a life of dance, whiskey, and depravity until the next All Hallows Eve when a waning gibbons moon is in the sign of Cancer, and the band materialises on the next stage to steal the soul of their next victim/winner.
Sera Devcich is a stand up comedian and gloriaville escapee, famous for tunnelling her way out into society using nothing but a thimble, the heel of sensible boot and a sieve. She’s a dreadful mother, professional nark, angry feminist, hypocrit and confused Disney princess wannabe.
She’s on a mission to make throwing people under the bus a recognised sport – so she can demand people refer to her as an athlete.
“She was the worst Virgin Mary to ever ride in on a broomstick donkey I have ever seen, she dropped baby Jesus and ruined Christmas” – Sera’s Sunday school teacher.
Cherry Boomb is one of New Zealand burlesque’s kooky sexy cameleon. Strange yet oddly charming, a death warmed up dark beauty. She’s down in Wellington with her aerial hoop to perform a special Halloween circus act.
Samuel S Snakeeyes
Through an obscene ritual involving rooster’s blood, whiskey, and black glitter, Rachel has summoned back that southern sinner, Samuel Samedi Snake-Eyes. Bound into her service for the night of All Hallow’s Eye, he’s back, he’s pissed, and he’s out for blood. Let’s just pray she can keep him under control.
Mike Kay is a performing artist whose media include mystery, influence and mind reading. He specializes in the applied science of imaginary solutions.
On Halloween night he’s going to bring all the creepy.
One part unicorn, one part cyborg, 3 parts madness, and 6 parts pinot noir, this one-woman freakshow is here to wow and terrify.
This 12ft femme fatale is taking her place on the stage to blur the lines between pain and pleasure.
Driven by her love of sideshow and circus to inflict wonderful and terrible things upon herself, she is here tonight for your entertainment and bewilderment.
Les Folies de La Mort
Les Folies de L’amour are an award winning cabaret, burlesque and French can-can dance troupe based in Wellington, NZ.
They have been high-kicking and seducing their way into the hearts of Wellingtonians since 2012, and at our Halloween show, they are coming for yours ( or your brain, or liver, they’re not fussy). Always happy to put the “life” back into “afterlife” these undead babes will bring you a performance to die for, as their one night only, alter-egos: Les Folies de La Mort.
Rachel loves Halloween, in this show she will recite the entirety of Edgar Allen Poe’s poem The Raven, perfect for a Halloween evening.
From a recent psychiatrist report: “Rachel’s mental state was normal, with reactive and euthymic range affect and speech normal rate and prosody. She appeared to have above average intelligence and there was no evidence of mental disorder.”
September 2015 Show
Bettsy Rose Lee
Desperately longing to be the glamorous showgirl, Miss Bettsy Rose Lee, Miss Burlesque NZ 2011, somehow always ends up onstage dressed as a tasty morsel of food.
Performing burlesque since 2010, she draws on her training and years of experience in drama, musical theatre, classical ballet and tap when putting together her acts and enjoys telling a story that takes her audience on a fun and fantastical journey. And it’s not uncommon for her to literally have them eating out of the palm of her hand.
Our host Hugo Grrrl is Wellington’s newest, dorkiest drag king. This adorable little gentleman arrived on this earth a mere in a hailstorm of duct tape and glitter, and has since made a big splash in the Capital’s cabaret community. His potent stylistic blend of burlesque, drag and uncomfortably awkward gyration won him People’s Choice Award and Best Newcomer at the Wellington heat of Grand Tease NZ last month and a bronze medal in the prestigious Capital Drag competition 2015. He is so pleased to be here humping for you tonight. He’s a lad who’s always happy to see you, he aims to sexually confuse, he’s Hugo Grrrl.
Veteran kiwi comedian and owner of Wellington’s best (and only) comedy bar VKs, Vaughan King is a legend in the New Zealand comedy scene.
Star of the New Zealand Pub and Comedy Club circuit for over a decade and with a bucket load of awards, Vaughan King is the best comic you’ve never heard of.
Fisher Rivero Connell
Fisher was born and raised in Mexico and came to New Zealand in early 2010 for High school. He started a circus skills club with a friend and performed at a school events including a musical production and graduation. He’s part of Wellington’s bespoke creative entertainment company Highly Flammable.
He sees Juggling as a hobby that allows him to escape into his own little world where he sees the slightest bit of failure as an opportunity for development and new skills.
Mama DeZiyah is like that crazy spinster aunt that only gets invited to family gatherings out of a sense of obligation. She’s acerbic, sarcastic and perpetually bitter, and no one entirely knows how she gets so many performance gigs.
She’s the current reigning Miss Capital Drag and she seems hellbent on using this questionable title for evil.
Her performances tend to leave people mildly uncomfortable and wanting a shower. Enjoy.
The ethnic chameleon that is David Correos hails from the leper colony of comedy that is Christchurch. While relatively new to the comedy scene David has already proven himself by performing alongside some of NZ’s comedy heavyweights.
He’s a master of bad life advice, awkward dancing and strange stories.
An individual who likes bullet points.
– 33 years old
– been playing drums since he was 4 years old
– he’s performed live with artists such as Bill Bailey, Tim Minchin, The Veronica’s, Harry Connick Jr., Panic! at the Disco, to name a few
– in November he’s going on tour, drumming once again with The Veronica’s
– in February 2016 he’ll be going in a NZ and Australian tour, drumming for the band Paramore
– this is he first Wellington gig performing his original songs
– he plans to start recording his first album in October 2015.
Constance is a celebrity life coach by day and a comic chanteuse by night. When not Skyping with a client in Hollywood, she is composing witty ditties in the shower.
Nick & Ty
Brought together by a love of performance and music, Nick and Ty are a couple of local boys playing music wherever and whenever they can. Music for these guys is more than a pastime, it’s a day job. The iconic Wellington waterfront is where you may find these musos or the jiving Cuba street, stitching together harmonies for every passer by.
Also the faces behind the newly popular ‘Busker Sunday’ open mic at Bad Grannies Cuba street, Nick and Ty are behind street performers of any flavour.
If you don’t catch them on the street, or at Bad Grannies, you can catch them on Saturday the 26th of September performing for The Menagerie at The Fringe Bar.
After a month off from producing, our benevolent dictator Rachel Rouge is back in the driving seat. She’s mixing metaphors like a runaway train galloping across the canvas of her mind.
Rachel can’t wait to put together this show and hopes you come along to check it out.
Rachel Rouge was once written as a character in a book, where she was described as having “a face like a bulldog chewing a wasp.”
August 2015 Show
Daniel John Smith
Daniel John Smith was the winner of Best Newcomer at the Wellington Comedy Awards and was a finalist in the national Raw Comedy Quest. Coming off a sold out run of shows in the Comedy Festival, he has been called ‘terrific’ (Simon Sweetman, Off The Tracks) and ‘a treat to watch’ (The Ruminator). He has zero jokes about airplane food, and many jokes about death. He wrote this in the third person.
The 100% SASCHA Experience
After a critically acclaimed sold out world tour, hailing from the vodka fuelled depths of Eastern Europe, we welcome one of the world’s most celebrated, most powerful and most fiercely hilarious personalities… SASCHA.
“Its me bitches.”- Sascha★★★★★
Take a whole lot of love, a few cups of vulnerability, a healthy dollop of feminism and just a pinch of cynicism. Stir well. Poems will soon arise.
Original photo by Travis Cottreau
Bun-Bun St Velvetine
Bun-Bun has a bad habit of making up nonsense, especially when she’s nervous or excited. She very nervous about performing at the Menagerie, and very excited. Luckily this time she has memorized her lines, and will be reciting some of her favourite nonsense poetry. She may even sing.
Original photo by Zemi Photography
Popham and Hall
Jag Popham and Sam Hall are students of the New Zealand School of Dance. The piece they will be performing this month is an extract from the NZSD’s recent season of “KARST”. Special thanks to their choreographer Demi-Jo Manalo.
That toxic temptress Viola Nightshade is back to serenade you into darkest dreams and deepest desires, if she can get her consort Dante Diamante to do what he’s told.
Original photo by Jasmyne Chung
Tom LaHatte & his Jazz Bandits
Founded for the express purpose of playing in speakeasies, Tom LaHatte and his Jazz Bandits are like a fancy cocktail that gets you pretty tipsy, but is cheap enough to keep you coming back for more.
Three parts jazz, four parts liquor, one part surprise covers. Every bit a good time.
Original photo by James Carroll
Andrew Welsh would like to tell you what it is that he does, unfortunately, he cannot decide exactly what that is. To solve this problem, Andrew would like to introduce you to a character of his, The Man in Blue. The Man in Blue is here to entertain you with illusions, tricks and an assortment of other circus based acts. Andrew would like to remind you that although the universe is endless and terrifying, fun and enjoyment still exists, and he hopes to give this to you.
Sonny and Vanessa
Sonny and Vanessa would like to introduce you to Viv and Wendy as they remember the life of dear friend Donna. They will take you on a journey of the highs, lows, and middling moments that brightened up the life of Donna.
For reasons unknown, Rachel Rouge has opted to take a month off of running the Menagerie. For reasons unknowabler, she asked Eli to take the helm til she got back. For reasons unknowablest, Eli said yes.
As a result, he is proud to present this month’s line-up. He will be backstage keeping everything under control until the boss gets back, and occasionally onstage picking up after the performers. Feel free to buy him a drink.
Original photo by Paradox Photography
July 2015 Show – COMIC STRIP show
This month all our performers are either stand up comedians or burlesque performers. One show of only two performance genres, but not lacking in variety.
Caroline Welkin has put comedy in her life since she wrote and directed her first show at a London primary school. Sadly YouTube wasn’t invented for another 40 years, or you’d know her better.
She came to live in Wellington with her comedy in 1997, having been inspired by teachers from the UK and US. She’s been a comedy Diva, an award winning Fringe performer and on Pulp Comedy. Caroline brings lugubrious humour and tall tales together. As a comedian and storyteller around Wellington and beyond, she is bigger than ever before – which she blames on menopause. Life never stops giving you something to laugh at. . .
She is thrilled to be part of Menagerie, as she owns many outfits that she just can’t wear on Upper Hutt High Street.
Originating from Canada, Rob has found a nice home with NZ stand-up comedy and has become a mainstay on the scene – the highlight of his experience receiving an honorary mention in this year’s National Raw Comedy Quest finals.
A mixture of observational and story-telling, Rob’s punchlines seem to come out of nowhere, and tend to come often, always leaving the crowd delighted.
“His act is polished and presented flawlessly; rich laughs abound” – Theatrereview
Alice is a rapidly rising star on the NZ comedy circuit, hand picked to be the support act for Anchorman’s David Koechner, Alice has been on a roll. Her show ‘How to Fold a Fitted Sheet’ had a sold out season during the 2015 international comedy festival and She’s recently performed in 7DAYS LIVE in Auckland.
Clever Hansel has been charming audiences with his delightfully perverse brand of burlesque, music and twisted cabaret in Wellington since 2009. He is a peddler of smut, filth and theatrical ukulele freakfolk.
Hansel also performs as a member of The Klaus Vermillion Quartet, Wellington’s only band of jazz con-artists.
His parents know what he gets up to for fun. They still speak to him.
Ellie Kat / Felix Goodfellow
Ellie Kat has been an icon of the New Zealand drag scene, a Miss Drag winner herself and the builder of an empire of winning drag queens.
Ms Kat is also a stable on the burlesque and cabaret stages both as herself and her alter/other ego Felix Goodfellow. Both Ms Kat and Mr Goodfellow will be joining us at The Menagerie’s July show in one sublime act of beauty, poignancy and emotion.
Andre Corey is the current Mr Pole Dance New Zealand who started his pole journey a little over 5 years ago.
“Beautiful, graceful movement combined with jaw dropping gravity defying strength this boy sure knows how to pack a punch!”
Since breaking in her first stage in 2010, Penny Pins has been a stalwart member of the New Zealand Burlesque scene. Known for her fast-paced and brazen approach to performance, this fiery little pocket rocket revels in the unexpected.
Lampooning vintage refinement and contemporary pop-culture whilst drawing upon her extensive dance background, Penny proves that sex appeal can be found in the strangest of places.
Winner of this month’s Wellington heat of Grand Tease, Fanciforia is one part showgirl, two parts clown, a dash of angel and a splash of devil. She’s the ingenue with the screwball style and a waist so small it’s almost not there.
Fanciforia was lured onto the burlesque stage in 2011 from the world of theatre. She is now a tour de force in her own right, loved for her quirky characters, comedic flair and hammy facials. Despite her youthful 27 years, she has the hip of a geriatric. One hip replacement later and she’s a real life porcelain doll and New Zealand’s only bionic burlesque performer.
She has toured the length and breadth of Aotearoa, across the seas to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2006 across the ditch in the Australian Burlesque Festival 2014 and across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.
other notable skills include the Irish Jig, Highland fling, dressage, crochet and a perfect impersonation of Janice from Friends.
Ollie is a cancer survivor, he also survived a sold out season at Bats theatre during the NZ Comedy Fest with Comic of Poet?, as well as sold out crowds at The Medicine.
He’s originally from Jersey, (the island not the state, which explains the lack of fake tan and hair gel) he shares painfully honest stories full of embarrassing moments in his life that both shock and delight.
Rachel Rouge is the brains and brawn behind The Menagerie. She loves putting on this show and is especially excited about an entire show of only stand up comedians and burlesque performers.
Rachel has been caught up in teargas before, she learnt from this experience that if she’s ever in tear gas again she should run towards the wind, not away from it. This knowledge has never helped her as a variety show producer, but she’s pretty sure it’ll come in useful one day.
June 2015 Show
Betty Lightbulb is Virginia Kennard, and Betty Lightbulb is on a mission – to have Virginia keep her clothes during at least one performance. This is because Virginia makes explicit body performance, likes playing with clothes as social signifiers, straps Barbies round stripper poles, and generally gets her kit off for performance art. Betty is asking you to watch, since Virginia has a thing about the gaze and non-consensual looking. Also shredding Britney songs with noisy femmes and free-bleeding.
By the time you read this Stephii Onassiss may or may not have won Miss Capital Drag 2015, either way her Menagerie performance will make you question that decision.
A drag queen and wannabe punk and performance artist, known mostly for her ability to repel babes and watch 4 seasons of survivor in one sitting.
Mildly hairy and lightly bellied. Irreverent and nonchalant. This good boy gone bad girl is a trash diamond. Made of pizza and bodily fluids. Have you seen how cute she is though, you should buy her a drink.
Honey Suckle’s mind is never far from the gutter! She has a love of the absurd and a fetish for baked goods! Nothing is sacred to this performer, with each performance a piece of art that has sprung from the dark and not so dark recesses of her mind, leaping onto the stage with enthusiasm and often straight into the audience.
Honey Suckle is a multiple title and award winning burlesque artist who has travelled and performed around New Zealand. She has performed internationally, once, playing the recorder in the local shopping centre in Bendigo, Australia. Her recorder was red.
The Klaus Vermillion Quartet
Three years ago, a mysterious stranger with a guitar case and an indeterminate accent swept into Wellington and separately booked four broke musicians as his backing band for a gig that night. They showed up; Klaus never did. The band’s been playing together ever since, filling dark speakeasies and wild gin joints with the sounds of hokum, sleaze and red-hot jazz, running cons and asking everyone they meet: have you seen Klaus Vermillion?
Hannah Fraser- Multi-instrumentalist singer from The Front-Liners, The Troubles, instigator of Dirty One Night Bands and encourager of karaoke, shambolic animalistic party behaviour and cartwheeling chaos.
Brendan Dooley is one of New Zealand’s top young entertainers who combines non-traditional magic, with quick wit comedy to create an insane experience that has made him an audience favourite right across the country.
“A new generation of talent who is already snapping the heels of established acts.” – THE PRESS
Duck Duck Bruce
Duck Duck Bruce is brand new musical comedy trio from Wellington NZ. The group create feminist, acoustic parody versions of top ten hits, and then try really hard not to read the YouTube comments.
The boundlessly embittered Genevieve Fowler put the words together and is musically compensated for by the infamous Mongoose (Saran Goldie-Anderson) and poet laureate (title pending) Ben Fagan.
They are friends brought together by a mutual loathing for pop music and all its insidious consequences. Find them online. Or at the bar later.
This red-bearded reprobate is regular on the roster of Rouge’s risque revue.
On the door, on the stage, lurking in the wings, or standing right behind you, Victor has been a part of every show so far. Noone is quite sure what Rachel is blackmailing him with, but it must be something juicy.
Brad is an award-winning Wellington comic, who has performed all over New Zealand and the UK, including the London Comedy Store, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and the Wellington Opera House.
He is a veteran of the NZ International Comedy Festival, with past shows covering everything from travel stories to growing up, from following your dreams to parenthood.
“A breath of fresh air… unpredictable flow and vivid personality” – Positively Wellington Venues
he’s got a website http://www.bradzimmerman.co.nz
Rachel has been running The Menagerie since November 2013. She loves it. Last month Theatreview send a reviewer, here are some of the things they said about the show:
“a singing, dancing and laughing hot house of good old fashioned burlesque”
“freakishly eclectic mix of talented performers for a truly unique and raunchy variety show.”
” this evening is all about the beauty of live performance.”
“it is safe to assume that Rachel Rogue will continue to compile Wellington’s most diverse and eclectic variety show.”
“laugh inducing, tear jerking, thought provoking and body rolling carnival style goodness.”
“start counting down the days until next month when Wellington’s carnival freaks and burlesque geeks emerge from their caravans to bring you the next instalment of The Menagerie.”
Read the full review here: http://www.theatreview.org.nz/reviews/review.php?id=8194
May 2015 Show
Part wolf, part grrl and part naked! Amourous Ava is known for her comic neo-burlesque style and steadfast commitment to romping enthusiastically around in her underpants dressed as characters from 1950s B-grade movies.
Mothers, lock up your sons! With a grind of her behind and a bump of her rump, her acts are always a glorious spectacle.
Based in Auckland, Amourous Ava has been performing throughout New Zealand and internationally since 2011. She is also the founding editor of the zine Pastie Politics: Burlesque and Feminism in New Zealand.
Ruby Ruin brings her own vivacious attitude to every performance, known for her high energy passionate performance style Ruby brings a twist to every routine. Her acts are unique, glamorous & entertaining. She is a little bit naughty but totally nice showgirl who has entertained audiences from New Zealand & Australia to the USA.
Hadassah Grace is a writer, singer and professional hot mess. She used to take her clothes off for fun, and now she does it for money.
She writes about sex, politics, and sexual politics.
In her spare time she mostly masturbates and cries, but she’s never burned a single kernel of popcorn.
Alice Brine is a rising star in the New Zealand comedy scene, She has been very busy making people laugh over the last year and has recently performed with the likes of Ben Hurley (7 Days), and international acts such as David Keochner (Anchorman).
Alice is equal parts intelligent and shocking. She is unapologetically hilarious and one to watch out for in the NZ International comedy Festival for sure.”One to watch out for in NZ Comedy festival, Alice shares a show with Award winning comedian Daniel John Smith in in How to Fold A fitted sheet. Also, Alice will be performing as Mirakle, lead Yoga-Instrukta, in Bogan Yoga. ”
Brimming with X-Factor, possibly insane but in the best possible way- Ben Hurley 7 Days.
The best comedy chops I have seen in a long time- Steve Wrigley -7 Days
Amazing in every single possible way – David Koechner, Anchorman.
Moira is a psychic medium, which means she is clairaudient (hears spirit), clairvoyant (sees spirit), and clairasil daily face wash® (removes pimples from spirit).
When you share with Moira, tell her what your issue is, the first names of the people involved in your issue, and any other details that make looking into the future relatively simple.
“I will change your life…NO REFUNDS!”
A hula hooping hurricane, Miss Valerie Vendetta hails from the South Island. She had previously been performing hula hoops in Christchurch, but the bright lights of Wellington beckoned her! This sassy, super fiesty lady is excited to dazzle you with her quiver of sparkly hoops.
A nominee for both the Fred Dagg Comedy Award and the Billy T James Comedy Award, Welsh / Samoan comedian, James Nokise, has carved out a reputation in New Zealand going after everything from gangs, to politicians, to stereotypes within Pacific Culture.
Over the last couple of years he’s performed at festivals in Adelaide, Perth, Edinburgh, and New York; guest lectured at Universities; been a member of the award winning Puppet Fiction (Pulp Fiction with Puppets) crew; written Wellington’s most popular political satire series (Public Service Announcements); all while continuing to be a regular host at Wellington and Auckland comedy clubs, as well as a commentator for Radio New Zealand, Radio Live and 531 PI.
Seth Hoffman is a singer songwriter from Albuquerque, New Mexico. He performs with a guitar, harmonica, strumstick, and loop pedal. His playful, interactive style of stories and music create a good time for all.
Spoink And The Luna Landa
Spoink and the luna landa feed off of each others dynamic talents
for song writing, they write authentic and diverse songs that are extremely melodic in flow.
They believe that having a wide range of sound keeps their music interesting to their listeners. Their lyrics posses a poetic story telling style that are performed with passion and conviction as “Real time is real music”.
Rachel Rouge is the keeper and collector of The Menagerie. She brings together exquisite performers from diverse genres just for one unrepeatable night. She loves this job, she loves bringing unique experiences together and hopes that everyone involved will have a memory that they will always treasure.
Rachel has a collection of photos of public toilets from some of the 56 countries she has travelled to. She also really likes squatty toilets.
April 2015 Show
Actor, writer and producer David Koechner is best known for his roles as Todd Packer on “The Office” and Champ Kind from “Anchorman” and “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.” Koechner recently received rave reviews for his role in the dark, twisted and film festival award-winning thriller “Cheap Thrills.” He stars in Paramount’s “Scouts vs. Zombies” and Legendary / Universal’s “Krampus,” both set to release in late 2015.
An alumnus of Chicago’s Second City Theater, Koechner got his first break as a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” and since has become an instantly recognizable face appearing in more than 120 films and television shows. Additional notable film credits include “Waiting,” “Out Cold,” “Talladega Nights,” “Get Smart,” “Extract,” “Thank You for Smoking” and “A Haunted House.” When not filming, Koechner performs live stand-up comedy across the country and creates original content videos for his YouTube channel, “Full On Koechner.” He currently resides in Los Angeles, Calif. with his wife and five children.
A Trickster God of irony, The Man is a nameless modern incarnation of the fool archetype. A new world jester who delivers an ever smiling spiel dripping with satire, mischief and yellow paint.
“A persona that is somewhere between The Joker and a 21st century facebook Oscar Wilde”- Kate Copstick
LadySane is a new comer in the Wellington burlesque scene. With her Fantastic choreography, cheeky little acts and comical facials, she is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat!
Female & Celebrity Impersonator, Drag Queen, Hostess &
Zane and Degge
Zane and Degge have been entertaining audiences around New Zealand since before they can remember. Born your average baby brothers, cute, round and bald, they are now fully fledged variety entertainers. They bring shows that meld highly skilled circus feats, hilarious grassroots comedy and fantastic creative entertainment.
Savanna’s stand up comedy is that of a sarcastic nature and her face is that of resting bitch-face. Her observational style story telling will let you step into her Doc Martins and show you a world as seen by an angry bogan.
Won 2013 Wellington comedy scene’s ‘Best Newcomer’ award
Won 2012 ‘Best Dressed’ at her high school ball
Alien Junk Monsters
Increasing waste accumulation combined with mutagenic toxins and possible extra-terrestrial influences has led to the evolution of a new life-form: ALIEN JUNK MONSTERS.
However the news is not all bad, as these fellas love to BOOGIE.
David Klein tires to combine his loves of storytelling and science in a theatrical environment. His full-length show ‘Toward a Better Understanding of the Universe’ earned him Best Newcomer at the 2015 NZ Fringe Festival Awards!
This young lady has traveled the length of the country from theaters in the countries largest cities to the streets of the smallest. With a background in dance she infuses this into her circus performances both in the air and in the arms of her strong acrobatics partner. She defies gravity, has luscious hair and really does dance in the air – this is not an aerialist you want to miss.
“Her tissue and aerial hoop performances have the audience gasping and cheering as she skillfully weaves her magic. The choreography of her pieces is beautiful and it is wonderful to see her display musicality and interpretation, as well as her physical ability.” NZ Theatre Review
Follow her on Facebook to see where she is next weaving her magic:https://www.facebook.com/smidgeaerialarts
Or for more about all she has to offer:
As the front woman for Karen and Her Fellow sinners, Karen puts the sin in singing. She’ll be your femme fatale with the tragic past and heart of gold. A friend once said Karen had the kind of voice you could curl up and go to sleep in – her favourite review ever.
Rachel Rouge is the curator, producer and stage manager of The Menagerie. Occasionally she performs burlesque, sometimes she MCs cabaret shows and every month she updates this website with some new bit of information about herself written in the 3rd person.
Rachel once won a ‘Sing Along Sound of Music’ costume competition by dressing as a hill. By gluing a little plastic goat heard to her green wig she managed to cover a few bases: Climb Ev’ry Mountain, The hills are alive, High on a hill, etc.
March 2015 Show
Peter Quin has been playing with bubbles for two years and can often be seen performing around Wellington on a still day. Come and experience his latest iteration: the electrifying Midnight Bubbles.
Faí is a Celtic trio originally from Christchurch although the blood and rhythm from the old country clearly flows through them.
This partnership of guitarist Michael Koefman, violinist Evie Hay and Irish whistle player is called Elena have been together since 2009 and perform regularly at weddings, funerals and everything in-between. Faí made their Menagerie debut last month represented by only two thirds of the trio. The audience loved the depth and breath of the music and they have been asked back.
If two thirds of Faí knocked out socks off what will the whole trio be like? We can’t wait to find out.
Georgia Fergusson & Shayna Tweed
Georgia’s love of singing started at a young age, with her first performance being in the Sunshine Singing Group when she was 8. Trying all sorts of different musical styles she finally landed on Opera and has been in love with it ever since. Georgia is now in her third year at the New Zealand School of Music and is trying to make her Opera dream come true.
Georgia will be accompanied by fellow opera singer Shayna Tweed
Jacquie is a performer that is fascinated with the art of drag, musical theatre and the seedy underbelly of jazz. She loves to sing, act and dance. You can catch her performing around Wellington and she will be performing as a flamboyant peacock and a temperamental flamingo at Wellington’s CubaDupa festival in March. And will be singing Wednesday evening at The Southern Cross on April 22nd 2015.
Hester Hawthorne is an introverted exhibitionist with a penchant for the ludicrous.
She’s been lurking around the fringes of the Wellington burlesque scene since 2009 when she made her debut as performer, producer and parent all in the same week.
Humour, flair and size-ten feet make Jim the hostess with the mostest for this upcoming Menagerie. With comedy chops tastier than your mums Sunday roast she will keep this night rock’n’rolling along with her own brand of laughs, sarcasm and pokes at the world at large.
Mr Wizowski is a man for all occasions. As long as the occasion calls for comedy, circus or some dubious legal advice. He’s been called “delightful, funny, zany and clever” (Theatreveiw 2015), but don’t let others make up your mind, witness him for yourself to get the full Wizowski experience.
From sixty-three letter German words to canine landscaping operations, any topic is fair game for this poet. His talent was honed on the mean streets of Wellington, where the only escape from his harsh reality was in iambic pentameter and craft beer. This explains the rhythmic, boozy nature of his work. He has also developed something of a reputation for excessive rhyming and terrible puns. For this he makes no apologies.
His poems are best served with a crisp Czech pilsner.
Gerard can be seen all around Wellington on any comedy stage that hasn’t
explicitly forbidden him.
His stories combine everyday experiences with a totally inappropriate sense of grandeur, that will feel like a second home to anyone who thinks they’re more important than they really are.
“Gerard Paapu is really very funny.” “…honest and real.” – Jan Maree for Theatreview
“The audience’s most loved pun” — Theatreview
Rachel spends a lot of time searching for the strangest and most entertaining performers in Wellington (and beyond). She goes to as many comedy, poetry, drag, circus, cabaret, theatre, musical, and burlesque shows as she can. She also stalks buskers. It’s not only fun, but it’s worth it to find the most fantastic group of performers to bring together for each one-night-only show.
February 2015 Show
The Menagerie is delighted to welcome back the incredible Jarred Fell who will HOST ALL THREE SHOWS this month. We are so excited about this we are going to use both inappropriate capitalisation and an overuse of exclamation marks!!
Jarred brilliantly smashes together comedy with sideshow styled magic. His performances, they are fun, creepy, intriguing and absolutely hilarious.
ou may have seen this gentleman busking around Wellington from time to time. He’s really not bad. He likes brandy and cake.
Sharn Te Pou is more than just a singer/songwriter he is a visionary. Believing in a brighter future where people are more open-minded and accepting of one another. He draws inspiration from life and his own personal beliefs. With his unique sound and soulful voice he’ll take you on a journey into his mind. After years of creating and developing his own original sound, thanks to Creative New Zealand he was given the opportunity to record his very first EP self-titled “Sharn” which he hopes to release early this year. This 4 song EP is a short but powerful glimpse of who Sharn is and what he has to come.
Pete O’Connell and his Spinning Wheel
Pete O’Connell and his Spinning Wheel Performing with a unique musical instrument of his own design, Pete O’Connell has been mesmerizing audiences for the past 2 years with his “Spinning Wheel”. This ingenious musical design creates an undeniably appealing and innovative sound, which, especially when combined with the guitar, greatly extends the guitar potentials for musical expression into a whole new realm of musical possibility. You must see and hear it to believe it!
Tess Munro Pedreros
After an impromptu performance in a crowded Spanish restaurant at the age of two, Tess started dance classes and has been performing ever since. Never satisfied with a single style, she tried everything from ballet to ballroom, hip hop to ice dance, kung fu to flamenco, competitive aerobics to contemporary dance before discovering circus. She now gallivants around the world as a mesmerising mistress of the hoops.
Ladyfruit is a tryhard. Because she tries hard. She’s got a kind heart and her feet firmly planted in the whenua. She plays to her emotions. Don’t generalise her, fool! She doesn’t even know what genre of music she plays. It changes all the time. Her sound is a mixed bag of soulful melodies, a spit it and hit it rapping style, and a ka-chink ka-chink hori guitar strum when she feels the mood strike. Ladyfruit just simply, loves jamming, like a fat kid loves cake. She also loves cake. And fat kids. Check yourself, this woman has soul.
Frank Burkitt originally learned his music in the session pubs of his native Edinburgh but his music is more akin to old time blues, contemporary bluegrass and American roots music. He writes bluegrass drinking songs, Celtic ballads, country anthems and songs that are in completely his own style.
Evie Hay (violinist) played her first performance with the Chieftains at the age of eight years old and being surrounded by Celtic music since a toddler, she has gained an enormous passion for this style of music. Five years ago she met and collaborated with fellow musician and duo member Michael Koefman (guitarist), while busking inside Christchurch Square. Ever since, the two have been enjoying performing for all kinds of events around Canterbury – and have now relocated here in Wellington City where they are continuing to share their music with the hope of one day taking it on their travels to the other side of the world.
Mike Kay is a performing artist whose media include subterfuge, influence and mind reading. He specialises in mystery and the applied science of imaginary solutions, with a success rate higher than any solutions that haven’t been thought of yet.
Visit his website: http://mountebank.co.nz/
Jerome is a regular MC and performer on the NZ comedy scene and has taken part in multiple NZ Fringe Festivals. He is a frequent compere of the Wellington Raw Comedy Quest, and has appeared on TV2’s Christmas Comedy Cracker hosted by Rhys Darby. From the insightful to the silly, he has entertained audiences from Auckland to Edinburgh.
“had the audience hanging off every word…uniquely enjoyable” The Lumiere Reader
“has an infectious enthusiasm and a delightfully lateral view of the world” Theatreview.org.nz
“brought the house down” Salient Magazine
Follow Jerome on Twitter: @JeromeChandra
Go see Jerome’s Fringe show Same Same Different
Jonny is a talker-talkwriter from Wellington. He likes open fires, tennis, Patti Smith, walking after midnight and David Letterman.
Go see Jonny’s Fringe Festival show LOOSE: a private history of booze & Iggy Pop 1996-2015, at BATS 11-14 March bats.co.nz/shows/loose/
Follow Jonny on Twitter: twitter.com/fastercamels
Seductively suggestive this vivacious vixen has a classically cheeky Burlesque style. One that will electrifies more than just the spot light. Trained at the Miss La Belle House of Burlesque she’s been thrusting glitter on stage for 3 years now. Windy Wellington based she knows how to blow more than just your socks off. When she’s not on stage she’s managing it, so don’t let her demure disposition deceive you she’s a barbaric beauty.
Go give her Facebook page a like.
This nifty little mocha-coloured vixen is a siren of the stage. As her name suggests she is a born-this-way show pony of the dazzling and bedazzled kind.
Her ventures into burlesque started 2 years a go and she has loved every glitter and adrenaline fueled minute of it. She has performed in many burlesque shows but also been a main character/performer in some of the well known burlesque based stage plays over the past couple years such as “Nautical Naughties” and “Skindiana Jones: Temple of the Lost Harlot”.
Her acts are often a little quirky with a lot of character and a lot of bump ‘n’ grind! Sensuality is her game and baby when you watch her show you’ll…..well you know when you see a cute puppy with a unbearably delicious treat just out of it’s reach? Yes. That’ll be you.
28 Days: A Period Piece is a brand new musical comedy about adolescence, womanhood and educational theatre from Discharge, the award winning comedy collective that brought you Benedict Cumberbatch Must Die and What is this, Woman’s Hour?
“An hour of hugely carried short and sharp laugh-so-hard-you’ll-piss-your-pants type sketches … ” Theatreview
“Laugh-out-loud…highly entertaining character-based comedy … ” Theatreview
Go see Discharge’s Fringe show 28 days: a period piece
Hinemoana Baker is a poet, singer and queer raconteur who’s been described as ‘utterly spellbinding’ and a ‘major talent’ on stage. These things were printed in newspapers so they must be true. She’s been writing and performing as a poet and musician since the early 90s, and has shared stages with and made a dick of herself in front of a wide range of celebrities, including Kiri Te Kanawa, Don McGlashan and Viggo Mortensen. She will tell you these stories if you buy her a gin.
Although she no longer looks anything like this photograph, Hinemoana chose it to represent her on this occasion because to be quite honest she is a vain person, and she likes this pic. Plus her love of top hats will never die. She enjoys fresh seafood for breakfast, long walks on the beach with her exceptionally well-behaved border collie and writing about herself in the third person.
You can find out more about Hinemoana, and read, hear and watch her poetry and songs at www.hinemoana.co.nz.
You can also find her on Twitter
Hinemoana’s new book of poetry waha | mouth (VUP 2014), confronts all kinds of darkness with surprising humour and strangeness. She says: ‘I’d like to think that opening this book to read is like standing at the mouth of a cave, or a river, or a grave, with a candle in your hand.’
Her Boosted campaign runs from 30th of January untill March 6th to raise money for her next book.
A bite-sized bad-ass that doesn’t care who knows it.
Since becoming a graduate of Miss La Belle’s House of Burlesque in 2011, Atomic Ruby has been entertaining Wellington audiences with her innovative, comic and quirky take on neo-burlesque all over the show.
Ruby has a lust for creating strong, visual characters and loves to consistently push the conventional boundaries of modern burlesque performance by putting her own unique spin on whatever she lays her hands on. Affectionately nicknamed the wee “Pocket-Rocket” by supporters, she’s miniature and seemingly sweet upon introduction, but this bundle of energy is really a bite-sized bad-ass in disguise that doesn’t mind getting messy!
Come see GDP Productions do theatre and puppetry with the lights off, as we don our ninja blacks and our highlighter yellows and perform some of our favourite Grimm’s Fairy Tales in this imaginative adaptation of an old favourite.
Check out their website: www.gdpproductions.co.nz
Go see GDP Production’s Fringe show: Haste Away Home: A Blacklight Fairy Tale
A founding member of Pat-A-Cake Productions, Sarah Tuck is a physical theatre performer and comedienne. Sarah enjoys strawberry milk, marmite, crumpets and meat week at Pak-n-Save.
Sarah Tuck (“dynamic physicality, good comic timing” –Theatreview) performs an excerpt from her free range, organic one-woman physical comedy, The Things We Do. It shares the unspoken truth about those silly, quirky and outright weird things we all do when we think no one is looking. Set in a supermarket near you, this show is the wine-taster-while-you-shop! It’s spontaneous, charming and will have you cracking up at your own aisle antics.
Check out Pat-A-Cake Productions on Facebook
Share their Facebook event page
follow them on Twitter
and go see Sarah’s Fringe show The Things We Do
This bubbly and quirky damsel is ready for you to be dazzled by her songs and dances as she takes you from your regular life to her fantasy world of comic book and video games. This is not your average nerd, and she is ready to 1 up your night with sex appeal and laughter.
Give her a like on Facebook
Rick’s comedy is relaxed, insightful and offbeat. A fan of clean comedy, his easy going charm lets you momentarily forget how deeply stewed in his cynicism you have become.
To this, Rick has responded, “Hold on, I’m not ‘deeply stewed in cynicism’! Whoever wrote that about me has issues and is clearly projecting. The reality is since I purchased the book, ‘The Secret’, I’ve never been more upbeat about life. I now have a huge mortgage, health problems that are very manageable, and a new boss who scrutinizes everything I do . . . because he says he cares. What’s there to be sad or cynical about? Nothing! ”
“Rick’s comedy is full of great ideas . . . His take on Kanye West being in the Bible, brilliant!” – Theatereview
Kira Josephson hails from California, and can best be described using the words of American philosopher and poet Katy Perry; “sun-kissed skin, so hot she’ll melt your popsicle”*. She has tap danced her way across the U.S., most recently in New York City, and has just moved to New Zealand. Though rarely found without tap shoes on her feet, Kira also enjoys playing the ukulele, watching classic movies and reading murder mysteries.
*DISCLAIMER: The Menagerie would like it to be known that Kira’s skin cannot, under any circumstances, be described as “sun-kissed”, and any attempt to “melt your popsicle” is not sanctioned by the establishment.
Jackson James Wood
Genevieve Fowler is a performance poet, a craft beer bartender, a parking warden and a terrible ukulele player.
She enjoys sitting on kitchen benches, fairylights, baths, bad jokes, beer, trains, felt pens, sci-fi, Doc Martens, dogs and most people.
She has no idea what she wants to do with her life, but apparently poetry is pretty good at helping you sort out that sort of thing.
With a background in Stand-Up and a Philosophy degree, Ben was one of the most unemployable people you could meet. Luckily he found performance poetry. Exploring the themes of identity, gender and society, he is happiest with a mic in his hand and punchline up his sleeve. Based in Wellington, he is a TEDx performer and organiser, Regional Slam Finalist and an organiser of Poetry in Motion Wellington.
Finding working full time a day job, performing, scouting, producing and getting international human rights policies tattooed onto her flesh too relaxing, Rachel decided to up her game by booking three shows in a row as part of the New Zealand Fringe Festival.
Then she decided that three of the same show would be good, but what would be better would be three totally different shows with an entirely different line up every night.
She enlisted the help of award winning MC Jarred Fell to host every night. It’s going to be a wild ride. Come along, anything can happen, we guarantee entertainment.
January 2015 Show
A live cartoon with a late night attitude. One of the last surviving female swordswallowers in the world Miss Behave is a cocktail of quick wit, high camp, saucy curves ‘n’ costumes, topped with a tongue as sharp as her blades.
We are delighted to have this versatile, funny and unusual trailblazer of the modern variety scene and groundbreaking host and producer. She’s been seen and heard by millions on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Guinness World Records, and BBCs Women’s Hour.
Miss Behave comes from London to perform and the amazing World Buskers Festival in Christchurch.
Here is what the media have to say:
“A true highlight of the cabaret scene” The Times
“Puts the risk in risqué” The Independent
“Sassy and charismatic” New York Times
“Impeccable comic timing.” La Presse
“Miss Behave is a living embodiment of Angela Carters Nights at the Circus” Evening Standard
“Genuinely edgy and genuinely funny” Time Out, New York
“Miss Behave is a wonderful ‘spesh act’ – extraordinary, glamorous and sexy, a divine swordswallower, husky voiced comic and gorgeous live cartoon” Time Out, London
“Miss Behave is quite brilliant, from the sublime to the ridiculous.” The Scotsman
“Absolutely charming, startlingly entertaining, and with a hugely enjoyable “Aargh” factor” The Independent, UK
Skylar is pure sex appeal, her raven locks and porcelain pale skin will hold you spellbound. This January she brings her whips, her rhinestones and her cowgirl sass to the stage.
Skylar flys around the pole at dramatic speeds, moves like liquid revenge and strips like the girls you wished you saw the last time you went to a strip club.
She’s the the unobtainable beauty you are too scared to talk to. And she’s quite possibly the secret love child of Mortica Addams and Malificent.
Poet and shabby old soak Michael Gray has been regularly performing his blue brand of spoken word in Wellington’s poetry and comedy scenes for the last three years. Past event organisers have described him as “Half dandy, half ape” and “Probably the third-worst person I know”. Check out more spoken word happenings in Wellington on the Poetry in Motion Facebook page
Prepare yourself to be escorted into a world of mystery, to question what is real and what isn’t. The closer you look the easier it is to be deceived. Kalindha is a street magician who has traveled the world. He’s a member of the Wellington magic club and professional ladies man. Prepare to be amazed as Kalindha transports you to a world of wonder as he makes the impossible possible.
Molly Sokhom is an emerging comedian currently, (benevolently) conquering the Bay Area of Northern California. Smart and colloquial, charming and idiosyncratic, she’s been making audiences laugh — loudly — since 2008. Whether at the legendary Purple Onion in San Francisco, or at Rooster T. Feathers in Sunnyvale, Molly commands the stage, affably navigating through life’s awkward-land mines and folly-shafts. The plucky go-getter is also a veteran producer, hosting shows at theaters, clubs, and coffee houses.
Volumptuous Twinkle Wellingtons blond bomb…um….shell.
Crowned the inaugural Mz Burlesque in 2013 which is a competition for performers who are like a fine wine and only get better with age and will keep performing as long as her hips hold out.
She has been entertaining for many years and has toured both here in NZ and overseas with the New Zealand Angels including 2 tours of South Africa.
A performer, producer, costumier and teacher she has her fingers in many pies mostly because she likes food and pies are easy to eat.
Born in New Zealand, raised in Australia and having done a lot of travel, Tori Reed has difficulty naming one place home. This affinity with being on the road has manifested itself in many songs, and undoubtedly, being a wandering spirit, will do in many more to come.
Tori’s music rambles from finger picking folk, through jazz influenced beats, a dusting of country and vocals that could be soul. It’s music that will touch hearts, tap toes and leave you wanting more.
Find out more at www.torireed.co.nz
Harlow Lestrange is a sassy spinner with a penchant for fire, putting on clothes then taking them off again and hula hoops. She has wowed many an unsuspecting audience member with her highly stylized hoop dance, focusing on exploring movement, manipulation and just having a sexy-fun time.
Offstage she is clumsy, plays video games too much and excessively daydreams about being a vigilante.
“…I’ve seen hula hooping before, but never quite so gracefully. It was in a word, mesmerizing.”
Pop by and give her Facebook page a like.
Suzanne and Rameka Tamaki were born in Aotearoa under an impressive mountain, by a fast running river. This Mother and Son duo live to sing and party. Ten guitars is not in their repertoire – just one guitar and a shit load of attitude.
Suzanne is also an accomplished jeweller, have a look at a video of her work on Youtube.
Excited to be back for another year out producer, performer, publicist and butterfly herder has lots of exciting ideas for The Menagerie in 2015. She’s super delighted to start the year off with such a rockstar line up.
Rachel Rouge once won the best costume in a Sing-along Sound of Music show for dressing as a hill. She has recently been learning how to preserve wet specimens, and the mummification of deceased animals.