Koo Koo the Bird Girl

Koo Koo the Bird Girl
09:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Sarah Birdgirl comes to Coney Island with a captivating synthesis of present and past in her award winning one-woman theatre show, “Koo Koo the Bird Girl”. She enchanted you in the Coney Island Sideshow, and now she’s back for one night only, telling the full story of Koo Koo, the ghost of Minnie Woolsey (the woman behind Koo Koo), and her own incredible pilgrimage. “Koo Koo the Bird Girl” weaves together the traditions of sideshow with dance, theater, and history, exploring the social context of the freakshow and what life was really like for natural born freaks.

With her uncanny resemblance to Minnie, Sarah presents a haunting and visceral account of the beauty of difference and a hidden story of endurance, from the voice of a natural born freak. Koo Koo and the other unlikely stars of Tod Browning’s revolutionary film, Freaks (1932), are also honoured in this performance. Significant, because the film was banned for 30 years for being too controversial, yet it is so much part of our history. Minnie went on to work at Coney Island, ensuring she was free from the life of asylums. This is a very special Coney Island show that will give you both answers and leave you wanting more.

As an internationally acclaimed circus and physical theater performer, Sarah has performed for several companies around the world, including Cirque Du Soleil. Most recently she starred as lead female in feature film ‘Reflections in the Dust’ and toured with Extant Theatre UK. She has a TEDx talk and recently spoke at the United Nations. “Koo Koo the Bird Girl” won an Australian Green Room Award 2019 for Contemporary Performance.

***** – five stars

“Sarah is an emotionally captivating performer with commitment to the work… Chuckles whisper through the auditorium… the choreography itself cunningly twists familiar classical steps, giving flight to the movement that swan lake will never achieve… the standing ovation combined with the tears welling… are testament to the evocative nature of the performance” Theatreview, Nov 2015

“Amazing, moving and revealing… This is an important performance… ” Express Magazine, Nov 2015

“Houbolt’s performance evokes a frisson that every misjudged soul can recognise… Evocative… impressive… Houbolt has a gravitas earned through many years performing around the world… Her demonstration of side show is a rare treat.” Nothing Ever Happens in Brisbane, Nov 2016

“A show that smashes boundaries between herself and the audience… truly unique” The Creative Issue Nov 2016

This show is suitable for all ages.
Run time 50 minutes
Transcript available for Deaf audience, and audio description upon request, at least two days prior to performance date.
Venue has flat level entrance and accessible bathroom.

Tickets are $15 online, or at the door.

Advance tickets at:

All ticket sales are non-refundable and WILL CALL only to be picked up night of performance, at our box office at 1208 Surf Avenue. TICKETS WILL NOT SHIP. There are no extra service fees for online purchase.

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