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The term "revue" generally refers to a theatrical production consisting typically of brief loosely connected often satirical skits, songs, and dances.

It has its roots in 19th century popular entertainment and melodrama, growing into a substantial cultural presence of its own during its golden years from 1916 to 1932. It shares a number of features with forms like operetta and musical theatre, bringing together music, dance and sketches to create a show. Revue, like cabaret, music hall, vaudeville and variety, does not necessarily have an overarching storyline, but rather utilises a general theme that serves as the motto for a loosely-related series of acts that alternate between solo performances and dance ensembles.

In South Africa variations on the revue form became very popular again in the 1960s-1980s under the influence of such diverse producer/performers as Alf Herbert, Robert Kirby, Kevin Feather and many others. A number of these performances were driven by a political agenda in the times of increasing governmental censorship.

See also Vaudeville and Cabaret.


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