This year of 2020 gave us a few unexpected curveballs like quarantine, isolation and the everyday changes to our daily lifestyle. One of those adjustments has been the absence of live entertainment that for someone like me was a weekly part of my life. Just when we thought things were getting back to a slightly adjusted normal, COVID-19 normal I guess we should really call it, I was excited to go see a live show. Unfortunately, those restrictions came crashing back. Feast Festival was supposed to be one of the first large scale festivals to bring back live shows with live audiences.
Self Isolation Songbook by Adelaide’s ever wonderful Ukulele Dream Girl was that show telling us all about life in isolation and our reliance on modern technology. After a concerning possible COVID-19 spread, our state was once again unexpectedly in lockdown, so how fitting was it that audiences had to watch the show via a livestream. I mean, there’s plenty of perks watching a show from home; lounging around in your PJs, a fully stocked bar with snacks, no make-up or deciding what to wear as well as not sitting next to a bunch of rowdy strangers! Funny thing though, the whole time I was watching the show that “perk” was also the very thing I missed. Human interaction even with those rowdy folks!
Ukulele Dream Girl took us through her experience of overcoming fears and anxieties while finding comfort through the screens of her phone and computer. There was a perfect balance of live singing, spoken poetry and pre-recorded interactions to keep the show flowing and keep us entertained for an hour. A highlight was the duet with Barkindji Woman Nancy Bates which spurred a straight from the heart performance from both artists.
Self Isolation Songbook was a little bit political, a little bit song, a little bit spoken word, a little bit physical education, but all up a whole lot of fun! It was the kind of show watching it live on a screen in your own home with the added touch of really living the experience. Almost like seeing it through her eyes…..literally, virtually, isolatingly (I know it’s not a word but give me some creative licence here!)
(Virtual) Review by Anastasia Lambis