Fife Cabaret Festival offers a weekend of entertainment this summer

Fifers can enjoy four days of cabaret entertainment in Kirkcaldy this summer as town hosts the Kingdom’s first cabaret festival.

By Fiona Dobie
Thursday, 23rd June 2022, 4:30 pm
The cabaret festival will run from July 28-30.  Pic: Lewis Milne
The cabaret festival will run from July 28-30. Pic: Lewis Milne

The event, which is being organised by Amby Stanyer-Hunter, runs at the Kings Live Lounge on the Esplanade from Thursday, July 28 to Sunday, July 29.

A programme of four live cabaret shows - each offering the chance to see something a little different – will take place from the Thursday to the Saturday, with the Sunday offering workshops for people to try out what they’ve seen during the performances.

Amby is excited to finally be able to get the festival up and running after Covid put a stop to plans to stage the event in 2020.

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The festival has been organised following the success of the regular Contrived Cabaret nights at the Kings Live Lounge. Pic: Lewis Milne

He said: “About five years ago we were doing a show at the Fringe and I thought why does the Fringe have to end.

"I then thought, actually, why don’t we just start doing shows in Fife.

"We started off with a cabaret once a month in Styx, it was just a small one so people could come and perform and try stuff out.

"Then when the Kings opened we ended up running a small monthly one at Styx and a bigger show three times a year at the Kings.

Fifers will be able to enjoy a variety of acts during the four shows at the Kings. Pic: Lewis Milne

"Then Covid happened and we did a couple of cabaret shows online during lockdown.

“The festival was supposed to happen in 2020, but we couldn’t do it, so this year I thought ‘let’s get on with it’.

"When you’re putting on shows, how do you go bigger and better, so I thought let’s have a wee mini festival.

"As far as I’m aware no one has ever done anything like this with cabaret, so we’re giving it a go.”

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Events lined up for the festival include Fresh Faces of the Festival – a show for those who haven't performed on the local stage before – and The Comedy of Cabaret – a full show line up concentrating on the funnier side of performance.

With Darling Clementine’s Tea Dance Cabaret, audiences can enjoy a Saturday afternoon of delight from the more kitch cupcake side of cabaret. It’s a modern twist on the classical side of cabaret.

The Big Show to be held on the Saturday evening will see a grand celebration of top tier cabaret from Contrived Cabaret, featuring artists who have been the foundation of cabaret on which the entire festival is based on.

Amby continued: “There wasn’t a cabaret scene in Fife before, so we’ve made one with the regular Contrived Cabaret nights.

"We've got a pretty good following, and we have a format to the shows now.

"The same things happen, but it’s completely different acts each time.

"For example there will be one drag act, one comedian, one pole dancer, a female burlesque dancer and a male burlesque dancer – there’s usually 12 performers and there’s a huge variety within each show.

"After Covid everyone wants to start living again and live entertainment is going to become popular again.

"People are now at the stage of ‘we’ve spent two years stuck in the house, let’s get on with it’.”

Amby hopes that people will come out and show their support for the festival and take the opportunity to see and enjoy something different.

He said: “Our festival is a week and a bit before the Fringe.

"It’s a chance to see performers that you wouldn’t otherwise see, especially not on your doorstep.

"It’s the closes thing Kirkcaldy’s going to get to the Fringe.

"It will be fun and it will be great.

"Everyone that comes to the cabaret raves about it.

"We’re hoping to have performers outside too to let folk see what we do and we’ve been looking at the possibility of a vintage market.

"The line up for every show is just as good as the next.

"The fresh faces show is not like an amateur night.

"It’s people that have never performed on our stage before.

"They are experienced performers.

"For example, we have one of the biggest names in burlesque in Scotland performing in that show because they have not performed here in Kirkcaldy before."

All the shows during the course of the festival are for over 18s only.

To find out more or to book tickets visit www.kingstheatrekirkcaldy.com