Adelaide Cabaret Festival
The Space
Until 20 Jun 2019

Review by Kylie Pedler

Over a six-decade long career, adopting a variety of styles and appearances, Cher cemented herself as one of America’s most iconic and influential entertainment industry figures. To explore the epic proportions of this diva in 50 minutes is no small feat.

Choreographed and performed by Larissa McGowan, the opening number, ‘Turn Back Time’ is a true salute to the pop icon. From the head flicks with lush long curls, the subtle shoulder pop and eyebrow lift, to a deep hip thrust, McGowan had all the moves. However, from here several numbers included too much floorwork which was lost to anyone beyond the first row of tables. The ongoing interpretive dance numbers became awkward and the lip-syncing was not always on cue. (A shame, as Cher is so well known for her vocal performances). There is an awkwardness to sections of the performance as McGowan leaves the stage to change and performs repetitive, stilted movements that are enhanced (or hindered?) by the lengthy strobe lighting and wandering spot effects.

If you are wanting to reminisce about the persona and characters that make up Cher, the documentary voiceovers included some funny recaps of Cher’s career highlights, downfalls and family relationships and there is a multitude of wigs and headpieces, black chiffon and leather from her most memorable moments.

Overall the intent is there but work is needed to transform this piece into the scale of who it embodies.