Tuesday, 19 October 2010
of years ago. Gigs are more my idea of a good night out. But when I was invited to go and preview the new La Soirée show on London's South Bank, I decided to give it a go.
The show is held in a huge and plushly furnished Big Top behind the National Theatre with mahogany bars, coloured stained glass windows and seats set intimately around a tiny circular stage. You're greeted by a ringmaster and the party atmosphere starts as soon as you step foot into the Big Top.
I went with a friend who'd seen La Clique, which shares a lot of the same performers as La Soiree, and as we sat and spied on our glamorous seatmates she promised me we were going to be in for a good time. And so we were! I won't spoil too much of the show but amongst the performers there was an incredible rubber man – loved him, he gave a little speech about following your dream, whilst sitting on top of a tower of tin cans with his legs tied behind his head! – a rollerskating hula-hoop diva, a 1980s German magic competition runner up, and much more. But best of all was Bath Boy. Bath Boy is basically a guy writhing about in a clawfoot bathtub, doing all kinds of acrobatics on straps whilst wearing only a pair of jeans that are soaked to his body. Put it this way, as we left the show EVERYBODY was talking about Bath Boy.
I felt as though I was at a 1930s Berlin cabaret. It was part-burlesque, part-vaudeville; a full-on, bawdy, carnival atmosphere, with the audience invited to sing and scream along and getting forced into participating. (If you're a good-looking dude sitting ringside, beware. You may be forced to take part in an act.) The show would be perfect for a date or just out with pals. Just remember to try and pick your jaw off the floor when watching Bath Boy. Drool is not cool.
[For more details about La Soirée click here.]