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Andrew Strano Nails It at Adelaide’s Cabaret Festival


Andrew Strano Nails It at Adelaide’s Cabaret Festival

Adrienne Goode

With a repertoire of ingenious monologues, hilarious up-tempos, and tear-jerking ballads, lyricist Andrew Strano and composer Loclan Mackenzie-Spencer shamelessly know how to entertain a crowd. In their show Nailed It, Strano takes his audience on an hour-long rollercoaster of life’s ups and downs and love’s curiosities through his razor-sharp wit and soulful reflections. Meanwhile, Mackenzie-Spencer is working on composing magic in the United Kingdom, with the globally-renowned Wicked musical—you know, whatever.

Dazzled in sequins, Strano’s blue suit jacket shines as bright as his eyes and immediately demands the audience’s attention. Though lacking his musical theatre chum, Strano is not quite a one-man show. The incredibly talented pianist Robyn Womersley accompanies Strano and playfully antagonises him throughout the show.

Together, Strano and Mackenzie-Spencer have composed a variety of inspiring, original, and brilliantly bizarre songs. The benefits of incest, and a deconstruction of chimpanzees French kissing are early themes within the show, both prompting cringe-inspired laughter and reveal surprising life truths. An adoration of babies is hilariously compared to the effects of crack cocaine, whereby Strano unapologetically induces the crowd to sing the line “crack babies” to a quirky, upbeat tune. However, the humour comes to a halt mid-show when Strano performs an ingeniously-written ballard that uses the analogy of a deteriorated car to describe a simply heart-wrenching story. With each song, Strano presents a deceivingly innocent musical foundation with a comical (and sometimes twisted) repertoire of rhymes. 

Having mastered his famous recipe of diligent musical composition, remarkable natural talent, and a deep understanding of growing up, Strano takes his audience on an all-too-familiar journey of falling in love and having your heart broken.

Header via Adelaide Cabaret Festival.