Also known as the “Purple Palace” (have you seen the outside walls?), Gate 69 opened on 87 Bree Street in September 2016. The burlesque-meets-The Birdcage theatre is the first of its kind in the Mother City. A group of three truly talented men dressed up for themed performances that are cleverly written and thoroughly entertaining is what you can expect from Bree Street’s mini Moulin Rouge.
Red Carpet Treatment
As you pass the corner of Bree and Hout, a red carpet and the lady of the hour greet you at the door with a kiss on the cheek. (S)he’s tall, blonde, heavily made up and striking in a red evening gown with an unwavering smile. This enthusiastic welcome not only sets the stage for the evening’s theatrics, but hints that you’re about to be treated to a very special, very intimate night out.
Before the theatre doors open at 7pm, guests gather at the lobby bar. Soft background music sets the mood. We have a drink before it’s time to take our seats. The theatre is dark and cosy. Dinner tables are romantically dressed with gold and purple accents and a dusting of glitter, while the waitresses are clad in outfits that match the theme of the evening’s performance. Designer mezze are served on a double-tiered Lazy Susan, followed by a flute of soup and bread. Everything is delicious, but not enough to qualify as dinner. You’ll want to have a bite to eat before arrival if you’re feeling peckish. (Patron-flavoured ice cream cones are served after the show).
Purple Theatre of Dreams
The lights are dimmed before an eccentric voice overhead makes the necessary introductions. The curtains are pulled back and spotlights hit the stage, which has been decorated to resemble a flight attendant’s cabin, as Cathy Specific and her Trolley Dollies make their appearance. It’s all perms, eye shadow and tight-fitting short skirts. You can’t help but smile. The show is opened with a joint sing-and-dance number, followed by hilarious chatter between the three excellently played characters. The decision to cater for only 90 people means the audience never feels excluded from conversation. The cast makes its way into the audience a few times throughout the evening, engaging us with witty innuendo.
The dress code (and I quote) is “look fabulous”. The perfect opportunity to wear that frock that’s been waiting in your cupboard for a special occasion.
Different-themed shows take place on different nights of the week.
Cathy and the Trolley Dollies: Until 29 June, Wednesday – Thursday
69 for Your (Adult) Eyes Only: Until 30 June, Friday – Saturday
Rocky Horror Thursday: 2 March, 6 April, 4 May, 8 June