Smouldering, sassy, sexy songbook stuff from the dark angel
This article is from 2008.
Sliding onstage in a red corset and heels, sipping a glass of red wine, French-Irish chanteuse Camille O’Sullivan likes keeping her audience on their toes when she performs. She may launch into a tear-stained Edith Piaf cover or an angry Tom Waits ballad, or freak the front row out by purring like a kitten or bouncing like a bunny. ‘The important thing is to make the audience feel something,’ she says. ‘That could be something very messed-up and dark, or painfully melancholy. Then maybe I’ll try something playful and sexy, but I like to keep shaking it up.’
Part Dita Von Teese, part PJ Harvey, O’Sullivan’s initial inspiration came from the Jacques Brel songbook and cabaret style of 1920s Germany. For her Fringe show, following a film role in Mrs Henderson Presents, smouldering performances at the Sydney Opera House and several seasons in La Clique, she’s decided to ‘rock out’ a little, drawing inspiration from contemporary songwriters, then adding her own sassy burlesque twist. ‘I zone in on wonderful storytellers like Nick Cave, Kirsty MacColl, David Bowie and Radiohead. If the song pushes buttons in me, then I hope it will move the crowd too.’
Queen’s Hall, Clerk Street, 0131 668 3456, 4—13 Aug, 10pm, £15—£16.