Craig Beardsworth - Capital Times
TIGHTROPE walking in heels, magic tricks in the nude, a barbershop quartet and vaudeville dancing – to us it just sounds like just another day on level nine at the Beehive. But it’s a living for Australian group Cantina. Using their wide and disparate skill set the seven members have pieced together a wild hour long act, up close and personal with the audience and at times gasp-worthy.
Effectively played in the round everyone gets a good view – sometimes too vivid. I’m sure I saw one of the coiffured Kelburn set grasp at her pearls as a woman on stage whizzed by as she was thrown between her fellow contortionists.
A double jointed woman – who began by walking around on the sides of her ankles (with gruesome cracking provided by a ratchet side of stage) was a highlight and marked the descent into a darker side of entertainment. A precarious balancing act walking across the tops of champagne bottles, walking on a man in high heels and walking barefoot through broken glass all provided a ‘can’t-look-but-must-look’ reaction from the audience.
The trust involved between participants was awesome – to allow complete control of your body be given to someone else requires a lot of training and a lot of time together. I’d love to see the warm up that Cantina do back stage to limber up their bodies and connect psychologically – it must take almost as long as the show such are the extremes they put their muscles and bones through.