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Borders by Henry Naylor: An Intensely Compelling Look From Two Sides Of War – Adelaide Fringe Review
by Dave Bradley.
Peter and Bambi Heaven have been touted as Australia’s most loved up dancing magicians – like David Copperfield and Claudia Schiffer, only rolled in sequins and set on fire! Learning everything they know from writer and performers Asher Treleaven (La Soirée) and Gypsy Wood (Miss Cage Dance Universe Australia), Peter and Bambi are bringing their new show The Magic Inside to Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2017, so we sent them some penetrating questions via email to get inside the minds of these fascinating creatures.
You call yourself ‘dancing magicians’, but how can you do both at the same time without, well, falling over?
“I’ve been into martial arts for a long time,” Peter begins, “karate mainly, but also some of the other more stupid ones too like Capoeira and Cage Fighting. A lot of people don’t know this, but I was one of the first people to mix magic and karate, so the step from Karate Magic to Dance Magic is pretty easy for me. I would say dancing, karate, love and magic are natural companions, like the holy trinity.”
“I’ve been stripping for a while in different clubs and I was winner of Miss Cage Dance Australia in 2016!” Bambi says. “I love dancing! Once I start moving I need to be free and I like being naked. Peter has showed me how you can do magic with dance and I love the way it works so far.”
You both come from the Gold Coast – or do you? And how long have you been in love now? Is it more than six weeks?
“Bambi and I met on the 22nd of January 2016 at a Landmark convention in Burleigh Heads,” Peter explains. “It was on from the start in a BIG way and I almost proposed to her after our first night, the connection was so unreal! Since then things have been really good, and we have our ups and downs like any working couple, but as I always say: ‘Love is a battlefield and you know what? I’m a genius at Battleship!’.”
“I love the Gold Coast and the sun is my home!” Bambi says. “I like to be at the beach and to tan. Meeting Peter here at the forum was the best day of my life. Our love is magic and it’s getting stronger every day. Peter brought me to life! I never gave up on love while I was cage dancing.”
Working together as couple can be stressful, so do you find that it makes your bond stronger, or do you wind up wanting to strangle each other sometimes?
“Look, between you and I, it’s bloody tough and she drives me mental, but I wouldn’t have it any other way,” Peter confesses. “The highs are high and the lows are low, that’s life mate. I remember a few times on stage where she’s badly injured me by setting my clothes on fire, kicking me in the face and cutting my ass with a samurai sword, but that’s love isn’t it? You have to take the sweet with the sour.”
“We never fight!” Bambi declares. “Our love is so real that all we do is laugh and do shows.”
I’ve heard that occasionally things have gone, shall we say, wrong in previous performances of your show, so do you just go with the flow and let it happen organically, or do you perhaps lose the plot onstage?
“I don’t know where you’re getting that – who told you that?” Peter asks. “It was probably some other jealous magicians trying to talk magical smack about us. When you’re on top everyone wants to take you down. Look, there was one time I set my last assistant Sheereee on fire in Townsville, and that’s it. It breaks my heart because now we don’t talk anymore, because she can’t. I don’t want to talk about it. Next question!”
“Sometimes I get excited and lost in the music and things get naughty and I forget where I am,” Bambi says. “Peter hates that! But I’m getting used to it.”
Can audiences expect more dancing than magic, or vice versa?
“The show has everything and it’s not just dance and magic,” Peter says. “It’s like this: if you love dance then you’re sorted, and if you dig magic you’re set. As we always say, we’re a triple threat mate: dance, magic and more dance. We are Australia’s only dancing magic stunt show with actual real-life stunts; no one else does what we do because no one else can.”
“You can expect everything in our shows,” Bambi adds. “We push ourselves to the max!”
Some fans might have caught you at the Adelaide Fringe last year, so have you changed your performance significantly since then or is it the same brilliantly inspired show? And do you still idolise Bryan Adams?
“Oh, this show is really top-notch and there’s lots of new stuff in there,” Peter enthuses. “We’re always working new tricks, getting things more perfect and more mind-blowing than ever, so you can expect all the things you loved about the last show but bigger, better and more magical than ever. We’ve turned the love and magic up to 101% this time so you and your Nan are gonna leave absolutely covered in Gold Coast sunshine.”
“Peter is so much better than Bryan Adams,” Bambi declares.
Tell us about some of your plans in the future. Do you both fancy turning to the silver screen? Or treading the boards in the theatre? Or can we expect more expressive dance and glamour?
“We’re in the process of getting ready to go and pitch some reality shows in LA next year,” Peter reveals. “Bambi’s got a lot of connections in the film industry there so I think we’re gonna be going BIG in the USA sometime very soon. Currently we’re getting a new show together for a tour of France after our huge success on France’s Got Talent. The frogs bloody love us!”
“I think Peter and I know that our paths are set for Los [sic] Vegas!” Bambi concludes. “We want our own show there like Celine Dion.”
Peter And Bambi Heaven: The Magic Inside performs at Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent, Adelaide Convention Centre Lawns, at various times, on Fri 23 Jun until Sat 24 Jun.
Book at BASS on 131 246 and bass.net.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.
Images courtesy of Simon Schluter