Returning to Adelaide Fringe this year is SA’s favourite German import; more popular than kransky, Shutzenfest and Hahndorf.
Gracing the Spiegeltent again this year is, of course, Hans The Boy Wonder From Berlin (AKA Matt Gilbertson) with his new show Hans in Das Haus.
Speaking to The Upside News in his car on the way to the gym to shake off the shock of Madonna’s Grammy performance, Hans is feeling inspired, impressed and a little alarmed.
“Honey, I’m on my way to the gym after recovering from Madonna’s Grammy performance. I’m wearing a conical bra and I’m blown away. She was amazing,” he says.
“I’m sick of everyone saying she’s too old to be wearing that because nobody had a problem when Tony Bennett got on stage! Correct me if I’m wrong but he’s a little older than Madonna. Although, who can really be sure? Parts of him and parts of her are probably the same age.”
Hans in Das Haus is The Boy Wonder’s latest creation and it promises to be a high energy, gangsta hip hop extravaganza.
Showing in The Garden of Unearthly Delight’s Spiegeltent, Hans is excited about getting back into the iconic venue and getting down with his homies.
“Last year was the first year we did our show in the Spiegeltent and it’s beautiful. I loved it, so I’m really looking forward to that. Most of all I’m looking forward to doing my show. It’s a little bit different this year because it’s a hip hop theme, so no more Kylie Minogue songs for me! This is pretty gangsta. Well, there are echoes of gangsta in it,” he says.
Bringing dance, song and his signature instrument of choice, the piano accordion, Hans is putting the ‘original’ in Original Gangsta.
“Darling, I think nothing says ‘street-wise’ like an instrument from the turn of the century, don’t you agree? I’m bringing a little class to hip hop and rap. I like to call it ‘Cabarap’, darling. I’m developing quite a new genre,” he says.
“I’ve decided that Jay Z needs a new showgirl. Beyoncé is alright though. Thank God he’s got her. I have a feeling she’s wearing the trousers in that relationship. Not always though; most of the time she’s not wearing trousers at all.”
And speaking of Beyoncé, and her lack of trouser, Hans’ scantily attired personage is costumed by his mother, much like the Destiny’s Child songstress.
“Like Beyoncé. My costumes are made by my mother. Now it’s been a little bit of a stretch to tell her what I want. I mean, if you’ve seen the poster, you’ll understand the kind of look I’m going for. Normally, we buy our fabric from DK Fabrics. But this year, I would say most of the fabric for the costumes will be bought from the dental floss aisle at Coles. Hence the trip to the gym,” he says.
“I’ve got to get fit. There’s so much dancing in this show, I don’t know what I was thinking! The opening number of this show goes for about six minutes and it leaves me quite out of breath. I might just do the opening number and that’s it. You’re getting your $33 worth in the opening number, let me just say that.”
Proving that he twerks hard for the money, Hans in Das Haus will be an interactive musical spectacular, showcasing Hans’ natural abilities.
“The twerking, believe it or not, is something that has come quite naturally to me. I feel that twerking, like the accordion, is a gift from above. It feels like it has just landed in my lap, like my twerking will probably land in the lap of an audience member,” he says.
“There will be some special guests in this show as well. There may even be a very special ensemble coming to join me on stage. Some people in the audience may find themselves as special guests of my show. There’s no refunds though, but you could probably invoice me for your performance if you’re any good.”
As well as bringing a whole lot of hip hoppin’ good fun to the Spiegeltent, Hans is also taking the opportunity to reconnect with his roots.
“Obviously I’ve always been someone who is known as being down with the kids; down with the word on the street – well, a few back lanes of Burnside, at least. So I’m really using this show to get back to my roots, of which I have none in the ghetto community, but I’m looking forward to exploring them, darling. And lastly, I’m just doing it because I just want to dance to all the songs I like at the clubs.”
Having been described as ‘god’ by the incomparable Kate Ceberano, Hans is humbled by people’s admiration for him and his connection with the Divine.
“I think if God was walking the earth, and maybe he is, he would probably be at the Spiegeltent starting February 23. You know, I’m just trying to live my life as simply as I can. The thing is, darling, I’m just like everyone else, only better,” he says.
“This year, the Fringe say ‘experience something new’. I say forget that and just come back and see me.”
Hans will be in das Spiegeltent for three shows only on Monday 23rd February, Monday 2nd March and Monday 9th March so grab your tickets now to experience the Boy Wonder in all his glory.
Shows begin at 7pm for a duration of one hour and all tickets are $33.
By Libby Parker
Photos courtesy of Hans and Matt Gilbertson