What does it take to earn the title ‘cabaret legend’?
This Saturday night Speakeasy HQ will unleash its newest MC onto the stage. She is the one and only Natasha York – cabaret legend! But the word legend is a big title to land on anyone – and perhaps should be given some qualification for those who have never seen Ms York live before.
She is pretty. But in honesty – that’s not essential to be brilliant in cabaret. Plenty of successful cabaret artists are not at all attractive.
She can sing. And, MAN can she sing. With a pair of lungs that bellow volume with the sweetness of an angel – she can seriously sing!
She is funny. Not only is Natasha’s rehearsed material funny – but she can think on her feet, keep an audience in suspense, laughing or silent – all with the greatest of ease.
But as much as anything – it’s the way Natasha York puts all of her skills together, using them like a conductor uses his baton, to draw her audience into a fever of cheering for her offerings that literally has to be seen to be believed!
This Saturday night our newest MC will take to the stage to present a huge 15-act show. With half the tickets already sold, it would seem that the pressure is on for her to give the masses what they paid for!! So we took Natasha aside to ask her a bunch of questions and see what makes her tick as she prepares for this week’s show!
Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Natasha York, I’m a singer, cabaret performer/writer, improviser and lover of big hair and wine.
How did you start in show biz?
My mum put me in speech and drama classes when I was 5 because I was really hyperactive and energetic. ..so nothing much has changed really except that mum doesn’t have to pay for me to do it anymore! I came 3rd in my very first poetry eistedford, and I wore my school uniform whilst everyone else had pretty costumes… Needless to say, Mum and I eventually got better at the art of “Show-biz” dressing!
What’s the toughest show you’ve ever performed and why?
I lost my voice due to sickness during tech week for my final uni production, and had to rehabilitate my voice from practically nothing, to show ready in 4 days. It was taught really big lessons in technique, believing in my mentors and in my own abilities – To make matters worse I got dumped by my boyfriend at the time so the fact I made it through to performances was very tough both mentally and physically! But I made it and it was super proud of myself, and very grateful to my teachers.
How do you choose your performance material?
It always depends on what I’m doing it for – As a singer I’m attracted to anything jazzy, vampy or sexy. As a cabaret performer I like to parody songs, or choose current material and mess with the style/theme of it. Lately though I have been getting into a lot more comedy so anything that makes draws out that response of laughter or even shocks the audience always makes great material! I’m also a bit of a fiend for audience participation – so watch out you future speakeasy hq goers!!
How often do you rehearse?
I am constantly singing in the car or making up weird little ditties to annoy my friends/family. Usually I set time to rehearse depending on what’s coming up 1 to 4 times a week. However, most of my best rehearsing happens during my day job when I annoy people over the phone and test out jokes and characters. Back in the day I was soooo good at customer service… mwha ha ha!
Do you have any rituals when rehearsing or performing?
Not really, I always make sure I record everything on my iphone, that way I’m not just stuck trying to write everything down at the computer. I usually write down ideas that I think will work then collaborate on music/lyrics/script with my Musical Director or my other performing friends. As far as pre-performance goes well a sneaky wine never goes a stray!
What will you be performing at Speakeasy HQ on Saturday the 7th March?
A mixture of some improvised songs, a few bits and pieces from my solo show “These Things Take Wine”. Oh and balloons!
We can’t wait to see the amazing antics of he wine loving, side splitting cabaret legend Natasha York this Saturday!! Tickets are already selling fast and available at http://www.trybooking.com/FADK