Q&A: Mikelangelo

The ODT asks some questions of arts festival Dunedin performer, Mikelangelo.


Mikelangelo and the Black Sea Gentlemen  

Q  What is your show all about?

We plumb the depths of human emotion and experience and come up with treasures — we might explore dangerous and seedy subject matter but out of that we bring pearls of wisdom, gripping entertainment and a show full of life and energy.

Q  How many are there in the band?

Five of us — Rufino the Catalan Cassanova on violin, The Great Muldovio on clarinet, Guido Libido on piano accordion and Little Ivan on double bass and me on guitar and I’m lead vocalist.

Q  Is your band the same line-up as when you performed in Dunedin in 2008.


Q  Are you the only singer?

All the band contribute songs to the mix, everyone takes a turn in the spotlight, it’s quite egalitarian.

We are an Eastern European version of the Rat Pack.

Q  What member of the Rat Pack are you?

I guess I’m Frank Sinatra even though I prefer Dean Martin.

Q  Is the show just music?

Our aim is for you to forget the outside world and take you on this wild, exciting and funny journey and when you leave you’ll feel like it’s a place you want to return to.

The songs are the core but we have built this whole world around the music to create something more vivid and vibrant.

Q  Who are the band’s influences?

We have listened to a lot of Nick Cave, Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen and they have a mythical world around their music and they have persona where you feel like you know the person.

I love Elvis, who has a stage show on top of the songs, it’s almost transcendental.

Q  Are you aiming to get transcendental in Dunedin?

That’s how I feel about a performance when I’m in it, I aim to create an unforgettable show and that’s what I damn hope we’ll do in Dunedin because we loved it when we were last there.

Q  What is your favourite Eastern European food?

It’s called  Peka, a slow-cooked Croatian stew, they cook it for hours over hot coals.

The taste and texture is beautiful.

● Mikelangelo and the Black Sea Gentlemen is on at Kavanagh Auditorium at 8pm today and tomorrow.

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