Cameron Goodall. Smartartists. Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Dunstan Playhouse. 22 Jun 2017
Almost forty years ago, Robyn Archer penned and performed her tribute to female vocalists who died too young, A Star Is Torn. But now it's the guys’ turn, requiring a hell of a guy to perform it. And it is fellow somewhat Adelaidean Cameron Goodall who got the nod. Goodall is a favourite of the square city, thanks to his collaboration with his brother, Tristan, in The Audreys (three ARIAs) and his many performances with State Theatre in the Adam Cook days, including his production of Hamlet. More recently was his Zazu in The Lion King, but everybody has to earn a crust.
Archer created a chronicle of the tragic, beginning with Hank Williams and cataloguing toward Kurt Cobain's vintage, with Elvis and Sid Vicious having recurrent roles. Ghoulish details of stabbings, gunshot, plane crashes, drownings, drug overdoses, and dubious diagnoses abound. Suicides and murders and accidents. A forty-year-old is a stayer in this crowd. Archer calls on a performer to change in a blink - to not simply play a plethora of musical styles but switch personalities while explaining a few home truths of life on the road and stage rapture.
Cameron Goodall delivered an astounding tour de force performance. These are not polished impersonations but multiple - a dozen or so - character sketches, where masterful observation and replication of key behaviours and vocal patterns conjure an astonishing verisimilitude. The width and breadth of musical style from country and western to rock and opera and folk were all on show. In a lightning change, it's no longer Mario Lanza, it's Bobby Darin! And it's everything - body stance, facial gestures, guitar style and vocal patterns. I had to gasp. The sleazy smoulder of Jim Morrison, the irreverent logic and abuse of Sid V, the laid-back rhythm of Otis Redding, it's all there and much, much more. Sam Cooke, Phil Ochs, Ricky Nelson, Jeff and Tim Buckley, Nick Drake. His Highway To Hell was demonic and precise.
Goodall was musically, vocally and mischievously supported by accordionist George Butrumlis and keyboard player Enio Pozzebon. Goodall, musos and vicariously Archer got the standing O. Double Bravo!
When: 21 to 22 June
Where: Dunstan Playhouse