Article Title:Q&A: Le Gateau Chocolat
Author or staff
Published on:3rd June 2014 - 09:41 am
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Story ID:15177
Text:One of the most intriguing artists at this week’s Auckland International Cabaret Season is Le Gateau Chocolat, an opera singing diva with a velvety baritone voice, who answers our quickfire questions: How would you describe your persona, and your performance style? Disarmingly honest, quasi operatic complete unashamed lashings of assholism, lycra and sequins. How did all these styles and genres you clearly love merge- was it something you consciously created, or did it just happen progressively when you began performing? I didn’t wake up and choose lycra and drag, it happened organically. Same with the piecing together of this show. The soundtrack to the show is songs I love but they mostly have deep, resonant meaning to my life which allows me to connect easily to them per formatively. Has your style and repertoire changed much since you started performing in clubs etc? I’m able to embrace more theatricality and truth with the evolution out of clubs. I can still do the running man and assholism with the best of them with a club set but in cabaret or the theatre I can display my love of Wagner, Bernstein, Purcell, Gershwin etc. What’s the difference between a drag queen and a drag artiste? And why is it so important to you to bust down stereotypes and clichés around drag? I’m not a female impersonator. I’ve never tried masquerade as a woman or create the illusion that I am; drag queen. Drag artiste… my embracing of DRAG which literally translates as dressed as girl is a vehicle of performance; the heightening of gender politics, the juxtaposition of being a full bearded hirsute gentleman embracing the feminine and the interesting frisson that creates and the educative line it allows me to walk and on the basest level… The gimmick which I now fully inhabit but has been an incredible blessing that has spurred a career that continues to surprise me 6to8, however many years it’s been. What can we expect from your show in the Auckland International Cabaret Season? Good music, if you come with open ears. If you come with open ears, an open mind and an open heart… a lot more. What do you hope people take away from one of your performances? That beneath the drag, lycra, homosexual… we are all human beings first. Let’s celebrate our humanity. The differences are easy to spot but are commonality is where we easily transcend said differences and treat each other equally and with love and respect, Who inspires you? Jessye Norman, Maya Angelou, Renee Fleming, Leontyne Price, Adrian Howells, Jonny Woo, Taylor Mac, Paul Capsis… these people are only a youtube clip away; treat yourself. The Auckland International Cabaret season also features superstar Lady Rizo, Julia Deans with a tribute to Joni Mitchell, Michael Griffiths honouring Madonna and Annie Lennox and Jennifer Ward-Lealand’s Marlene Dietrich show – plus others: AUCKLAND INTERNATIONAL CABARET SEASON Concert Chamber, Auckland Town Hall, THE EDGE Lady Rizo: June 5th, June 6th, June 7th, 8pm. June 8th, 8:30pm. Le Gateau Chocolat: June 6th and June 7th, 9:30pm. Julia Deans - Both Sides Now: June 4th, 6:30pm and June 8th, 7pm. Michael Griffiths –Sweet Dreams/ In Vogue: June 4th and June 5th, 9:30pm. Jennifer Ward-Lealand – Falling In Love Again: June 5th, 6:30pm. The Modern Maori Quartet: June 4th, 8pm and June 8th, 5:30pm. Tommy Bradson – The Men My Mother Loved: June 6th and June 7th, 6:30pm. Tickets through Ticketmaster. staff - 3rd June 2014    
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