Review: Women of the Whitehouse, Directed by Fiona Scott-Norman

Review by: Danni Ashton 

Thursday 9th Jan 2020

Who wouldn’t be interested in two of the most misunderstood women in America? 

Women of the White House: Make Cabaret Great Again is playing at the Polish Club, New Town, Tasmania, as part of the Fringe at the Edge of the World Festival, and this musical cabaret certainly give us an in-depth consideration into the minds of the infamous women Melania Trump and Kellyanne Conway.  

This show starring Melania Trump (Ebony McGeady), Kellyanne Conway (Sam Coats), and their cheer squad (Laura Morrisby and Claire Vandali), is a part drag, musical cabaret. This show has humorous insights into the minds of these right-wing conservative ladies who dare to lead lives in the arms of an orange who is being im-peach-ed. 

It’s hard to find the funny side of Trump these days, but the content of this cabaret with its humorous nicknames and funny songs keep us amused. McGready’s characterisation of Melania is certainly polished and she delivers moments of good musical comedy, particularly the number “I don’t want to hold his hand”. Coats as Conway delivers a demure performance which is then elevated in the musical numbers. Both McGready and Coats deliver brilliant physical performances, particularly Coats with well-timed facial expressions, flexibility and the excellent delivery of the tagline “Schwa Schwa”. This in itself is a must see. 

The narrative is linear, and the two stories don’t entwine, with Melania delivering her story and Conway straight after, which bogs the pace down a little, it would be great to see the two stories woven together. The choreography in the musical numbers is a nice touch, and the song “Do you want to build a border wall” set to Frozen’s “Do you want to Build a Snowman”, performed by Coats was very entertaining but short lived, and I was disappointed when it was cut short.

This show was well received by the audience, and certainly has legs. With the 2020 election looming, Melania and Conway will remain relevant, and finding whatever comedy we can in the situation might help us ease the pain.

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