Words by Scott Viney Photography by Pauline Lévêque
It’s a new year, and as people make resolutions (or revolt against such practises) there is a fictitious and flamboyant individual making her second appearance at The Butterfly Club. While there will no be Instagram selfie to track her new health kick, rest assure there will be plenty of entertaining stories to share and laugh. We caught up with the lovely Sarah Gousse to find out about her latest cabaret.
TMC: Hey Sarah, thanks for taking the time to chat with The Modern Connoisseur. It’s a new year and you have certainly started off with a bang – performing your latest cabaret show The Misadventures of Miss Bouzy Rouge in early January. How does it feel to be back at The Butterfly Club?
SG: It feels incredible! It has been a challenging journey but it has all come together and I am so grateful to be asked back so soon after my premiere season. It’s fabulous to know that people want to see more of me (and Miss Bouzy Rouge) and her/our misadventures.
TMC: Your cabaret show explores the idea of wanting to achieve a ‘une vie extraordinaire’ as you/we grow up, but like most of us reality hits like a ton of bricks. Do you feel the journey of life itself is extraordinary? Or should there be more ‘larger than life’ moments?
SG:I definitely feel that it is not about the destination, but the journey itself and that life is absolutely extraordinary. Sometimes it doesn’t feel like that when you are dodging No Caller ID phone calls, but I have learnt that if I want something to change – to have more ‘larger than life’ moments – I just need to create them! Every morning I say: “Who am I and what grand and glorious adventure will I have today?” It’s better than waking up and saying, “oh crap.”
TMC: What would be your top three extraordinary moments that you want to experience in your life time?
SG: This is a toughie. Ok.
- Travel on the Orient Express and performing as Miss Bouzy Rouge for a swell party (preferably for a prohibition 1920s recreation).
- Be in a Broadway show.
- Attending an Awards after party – the Oscars or the Emmys (I’m not fussed).
TMC: You will be performing a diverse range of songs in this cabaret; from glorious jazz songs to your own personal style of much loved classics. Was it difficult finding the right balance of making your own music but at the same time not ruining the genesis of each song?
SG: It was a bit tricky especially because I chose songs by greats like Frank Sinatra, Eartha Kitt and Edith Piaf (I definitely the pressure with the latter). I wanted to create something new and fresh but still have the essence of the song intact, so I played around with changing the tempo and style and used Miss Bouzy Rouge to add a completely different vibe. One of my favourite songs is her (French) version of Popular from Wicked. Such fun!
TMC: The play also delves into self-discovery and sexual mishaps that’s gracefully told with glorious jazz. It’s a strong combination that has sex appeal written all over it! Was it tough marrying the two together or was there many LMFO moments?
SG: I love this question! Surprisingly, it wasn’t that hard to match the two up. I love telling stories and always try to make them entertaining (what’s the point if it’s not funny I think?) For me, one of the main reasons to do a show like this, especially cabaret, is to tell the stories that everyone can relate to but that you wouldn’t necessarily talk about publically. I think if it has happened to me, it has happened to others, so why not wet ourselves with laughter at how awkward or uncomfortable certain moments can be?
TMC: In five words, how would you describe Miss Bouzy Rouge?
SG: Seductive – Flamboyant – Irreverent – Glamorous – Hilarious
TMC: And finally, we all know there are some crazy and strange pre-performance rituals before heading on stage. Do you have a set routine before entering onto The Butterfly Club?
SG: Indeed there is. Aside from the general weird sounding vocal warm ups, I just try to be in a calm space of mind. I put some jazz on, do my make up and visualise me giving all my energy to the audience and me receiving theirs. And then I make myself a Hot Tottie and jump on stage.
Dates: Thursday 8th, 9th and 11th of January
Time: 7pm Thur & Fri, Sun 6pm
Cost: $26/$23/$21 (full / concession / group 8+)
Venue: The Butterfly Club, 5 Carson Place, Melbourne 3000
Ticket link: thebutterflyclub.com