IT was an evening of fun and entertainment – not quite fit for royalty as it was – but nonetheless filled with lively and upbeat songs, comedy and silly antics by funny pair Rob Knowles and Flame Harris Metter.
The Not So Royal Variety Performance” at the 43 Air School’s Pied Piper Bistro was timed in honour Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th official birthday.
Harris opened the show with a cover of Miles Davis’ Bye-bye Blackbird and then Natalie Cole’s version of Route 66. Knowles followed with a melody by Nat King Cole, linking together three songs, Mona Lisa, Unforget table and Nature Boy.
The restaurant and bar at the Pied Piper Bistro filled with laughter and amused folk, some more tone deaf than others.
Knowles and Metter took turns for the rest of the show singing covers as well as some memorable originals.
One of Metter’s notorious characters, Vegas showgirl Lola, entertained and sang her cheeky routine of how she always gets what she wants.
Knowles sang an original dedicated to his partner, Do the Dishes, and I Ain’t No Homo, accompanied by an acoustic guitar.
As a duo Knowles and Metter also sang songs by “Mickey Bubble” (Michael Bublé), Jim Croce and Elvis Presley, including Blue Moon of Kentucky and other sentimental blues hits.
Although the pair are stronger as entertainers than singers, they managed to do justice to each song, changing pitch and melody to suit their own style.
Metter exudes confidence and charisma when she touches the microphone and the interaction between the two was as great as the comedy sketches in between. She took it back to country and tossed in a barrel of hick cousins and a few hee-haws with her performance. Despite some reservations, a few audience members were led on stage to participate in a great interactive piece where Metter and her “cousins” played a series of improvised country instruments like the spoons, washboard, tambourine and the musical triangle while she sang Down at the Twist and Shout.
Knowles and Metter have done several collaborations in the past two years and this show was one of their most relaxed and funniest so far.
The audience enjoyed it and forgave them for slight mess-ups with the lyrics and song order.
During a brief interval with lingering giggles, delicious food prepared by Pied Piper Bistro food and beverage manager Mike Flint was served to the enjoyment of all there.