Disenchanted (Living Record Festival, online)

Eliane Morel’s deeply subversive cabaret show about fairy tales has already been seen at the Adelaide and Newcastle Fringes, and now can be enjoyed on demand at the Living Record Festival.

Morel plays the vivacious and operatic Madame d’Aulnoy (1651-1705, inventor of the term ‘fairy tales’. In her salon, you may find out plot points and revelations which would never have occured to you.

If you think you know the ins and outs of those classic tales, you might want to think again, as these are “twisted fairly tales” brought to you by a lively performer who brings a range of “neglected” characters to life.

Screencap from Disenchanted

This is a really engrossing show which works well with its green screen technology, digital art and on-screen lyrics. With high production values throughout, this digital version of Disenchanted will keep you watching, as some moments will make you smile, others set to thrill.

This isn’t for the young viewers (they may never see Red Riding Hood the same way again), but older audiences will appreciate the clever lyrics, the familiar tunes, and the moments where Morel has given her unique spin to the tales.

“A cabaret of twisted fairy tales” is a fitting subtitle for this showcase: you may recall another show called Disenchanted which gave voice to major characters from fairy stories, but Morel’s version takes peripheral characters like Cinderella’s two step-sisters, or the Wolf who allegedly ate granny, and gives them the chance to explain themselves.

Screencap from Disenchanted

With videography by Simon Dikkenberg, editing by Hayden Rodgers, sound design by Daryl Wallis, and visual art by Merran Hughes, Morel’s collaborators on Disenchanted keep everything moving beyond the usual Zoom-lite presentation style we have seen in other digital shows.

A lot of fun, and definitely a show to make me head back to my fairy tale story collections to think about the other points of view.

You can stream Disenchanted at the Living Record Festival until 22 February. Book your tickets here.