My Other Closet the Cabaret: A Unique DV Prevention Strategy Using Personal Story & Music


Research shows that LGBTQ Australians experience intimate partner violence (IPV) at similar rates to cisgender, heterosexual women. However it is poorly understood by the communities it effects and those who could help them. Part entertainment & part education, ‰’My Other Closet the Cabaret‰’ is a first-hand account of one gay man‰’s true-life journey to domestic violence survivor. Through powerful storytelling and songs, it gives moving insight to IPV and how to end it. After successful seasons in Melbourne and Sydney, the project has proven to be highly effective in raising community understanding of IPV in LGBTQ relationships. This cabaret is a powerful way of providing tailored information for professionals, actual and potential victims, and bystanders in an accessible & engaging format. It is a unique and effective health promotion & professional development tool. It moves people to action by educating them on the complexities of LGBTQ IPV and appropriate intervention strategies, whilst also building empathy and understanding through the emotional impact of musical theatre. This presentation will explain the research & theoretical frameworks underpinning the project & share lesson‰Ûªs learned in its development and production. It will explain how the project was developed through partnerships with ACON, VAC, GLHV, Queerspace, TGV, & Switchboard, and how these served to strengthen the project and the capacity of the sector to address this issue. Participants will also be able to ask questions of the producer/director and performer, then will be treated to live musical numbers from the cabaret!


Russell Vickery |

Russell Vickery Rusty brings his experience of 12 years as a freelance vocal artist, performing for clubs, pubs, and major LGBTIQ events, as well as his personal experience with domestic violence and 3 years sharing that with this production to his role as Lead Performer.

Matthew Parsons

As well as his work in training DV services in LGBTI inclusive practice for GLHV@ARCSHS, Matt brings over a decade’s industry experience producing various LGBTIQ performing arts events, and his own personal experience with domestic violence in a same sex relationship to the role of Producer/Director.

Daryl Wallis

“Dazzla” (as lovingly referred to by the rest of the cast and crew) is an accomplished composer, keyboard musician, vocal coach and musical director. He has been involved in a large number and large variety of Australian and international musical productions spanning theatre, film, TV, and most notably cabarets for decades. He brings all this experience to the role of Musical Director.