national Arts Festival Banner

Friday, September 23, 2016


(Rowan Bartlett, Darren King & Bryan Hiles)

Cabaret show a triumphant first for these highly talented performers. (Review by Caroline Smart)

Darren King, Bryan Hiles and Rowan Bartlett have worked together in plays, pantomimes and adult pantos for many years but Tie a Knot in It is their first venture as a cabaret trio. The show recently appeared at the 2016 Hilton Arts Festival and if, by their own admission, the show was put together in a hurry, there’s no sign of this.

It’s full of light-hearted banter (whether adlibbed or not!) and their professionalism makes this show a triumphant first for these highly talented performers.

They dub it “a chaotic and exuberant romp through the casinos of Las Vegas and the stars who have made them famous”. This is a must for anyone who enjoys the music of the likes of Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra or Nat King Cole – to name a few of the artists featured.

The tiny stage at the Art Block was graced by three huge showgirl headdresses which create an exotic background. There are a couple of bar stools, a hat stand, a small table and a nude figure of a female which gradually gets adorned and dressed with props like nipple caps or wigs.

The title comes from the expression “Tie the knot or blow the lot” which is associated with Las Vegas, a city considered to be the wedding capital of the world.

Songs like Let Me Entertain You, Unforgettable, Straighten Up and Fly Right, I’m Loving Angels Instead, New York New York and Fly Me to the Moon are handled with stylish ease. There was some good harmonising in Me and My Shadow and Elvis’s The American Trilogy was splendid. The threesome also gets in some slick moves!

Look out for the show on the Durban circuit next year – if this is your kind of music, you don’t want to miss it! – Caroline Smart

For more information on the annual Hilton Arts Festival visit