The intimate setting of La Boheme, with Cameron Thomas’s sensuous piano playing and Armstrong’s risque antics, creates an experience of forbidden cabaret at the time of the rise of Adolf Hitler.
Armstrong – in a sleek black dress, stockings and suspenders – skillfully draws us into a song and then hits us with a bit of unexpected slapstick or political statement. She has an excellent sense of comedy and strikes up a terrific rapport with the appreciative audience.
Goodbye to Berlin has a feeling of mischief and delights in its sense of liberation; the essential philosophy is to enjoy the moment and not be bound by social rules and mores, while all the while suggesting the need to resist oppression.
This performance is a reminder of why some forms of theatre are forced underground and why we revel in attending them.
The Adelaide Fringe season of Goodbye to Berlin has now finished.