A fast-paced fusion of reality, comedy, music... and a touch of tragedy. Whiskey Bars is a strikingly original, unpredictable singer's story of attempting a final comeback, fueled by too many vodka martinis and Kurt Weill's dark and daring songwriting.
Backstage, in old dressing room of a run down cabaret theatre, just before his big comeback performance, a performer battles an invisible critic, trying every trick he knows to win a good review. There are lies, seduction, charm, anger and outright begging - and in the process he reveals more then he expects about himself and his belief and love for the music of the amazing Kurt Weill.
“a fantastic show - a perfect festival experience – outstanding singing, in a distinctive setting - with the story of the insecure performer lending subtext and dynamism to a thrilling reworking of Weill material. It was seedy. It was stirring. It was utterly memorable.”
-Andrew Clover, Sunday Times (uk)
"...theatre at its very best. Bremner’s classical training and background as a many-year veteran in musicals and jazz bands is evident from the outset. By the time we arrived at the chillingly Speak Low - calm on the surface, yet bubbling with undercurrents of febrile yearning - we were left with no doubt whatsoever that we were in the presence of a true master of his craft. This show is, like the best of Weill's own works for the stage, a seamless blend of gripping entertainment and genuinely moving art."
-The Edinburgh Fringe Review
"This one-man show was dark, glitzy, dingy and sparkled with the life of a performer down on his luck. Written and performed by Bremner Duthie, it betrays the author's passion for Kurt Weill, whose music inspired the piece and permeates the show's central character. Innocent and at the same time far too world-weary, Bremner's voice was strong and beautiful. Darlings, life is a cabaret."
-Three Weeks Magazine
"brave and inventive...a compelling and boldly-delivered one man show full of energy and impassioned acting."
-Music Theatre Matters:
"Kurt Weill grew up," states actor Bremner Duthie's character impassionedly near the end of this show, "between a synagogue and a music hall theatre." Thus, Duthie asserts, the composer's life and music reached a perfect balance between the sacred and the profane early on, and there's a real sense of both in his show. The music is sung with all the passion the character brings to bear when introducing it. Duthie's voice and performance give songs like I'm a Stranger Here Myself the perfect level of sexuality and tenderness, while his version of Je ne t'aime pas demonstrates what he means when he says "Weill can break your heart in any language". "
"Bremner Duthie, brings his one man “Kabarett” to Edinburgh, featuring the music of Kurt Weill - and it wonderfully showcases his multitude of talents as a writer and performer.
The character pays homage to the life of Kurt Weill, punctuating the interview with captivating performances of his songs. These are beautifully delivered with power and emotion, set to a hauntingly sparse piano accompaniment."
-Broadway Baby Review
Whiskey Bars has been performed hundreds of times in spaces that range from a basement theatre under a bar with one light, right up to a 300 seat contemporary black box theatre.
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