Sign up for a Q Membership and start saving

Keep up to date with the latest news from the Q

The Q

Q the Locals presents

Under the Influence

3 Nov 23

The Q


by John Shortis, Moya Simpson and Michael Simic

A tragi-comic romp through the many moods of Mikelangelo



3 November 2023, 7.30pm

4 November 2023, 7.30pm


The Q

Running time

110mins, 20min interval

Audience advice

May contain coarse language and adult themes. Recommended for ages 18+


$30 – $60

Concession tickets must show ID

Group 8+$50ea




Bungendore’s Shortis and Simpson specialise in shows that reflect Australia’s political, social and music history with a mix of comedy, quirky use of musical styles and vocal flair. Braidwood’s Mikelangelo (Michael Simic) is a stunning, larger-than-life, singer and songwriter of Croatian heritage, known to many as the front man of the Black Sea Gentlemen.

One of Moya Simpson’s passions is world music, especially Balkan traditional song, so it is hardly surprising that in our small arts community, two Eastern European tragics were destined to find each other.

Under the Influence is a bittersweet cabaret, based on Mikelangelo’s musical influences. It delves into the formative elements of his life, from his years as a Croatian-Australian boy growing up in Canberra to a performer and writer who has gone onto great success on national and international stages.

This highly creative collaboration captures the many sides of his life, from laconic Aussie bloke to the irrepressible cabaret performer he’s become, through music as diverse as Balkan folk, Spaghetti Western, surf music, ‘50s rock ‘n’ roll, crooners, iconic singers and songwriters, original songs, and more.

Accompanied by a three-piece band, Under the Influence promises humour, poignancy, surprising revelations, immersive theatricality, and stunning musical moments.

Adding to the local content, the show is directed by another Bungendorian, experienced music-theatre practitioner, Tracy Bourne, making this a unique journey from Canberra to Croatia, Bungendore to Braidwood, all coming together in Queanbeyan.

Creators/Performers John Shortis, Moya Simpson & Michael Simic

Director Tracy Bourne

A big rugged cowboy with a deep baritone voice and a Balkan swagger.

The Clothesline