There is a lot to love about the internationally acclaimed circus-cabaret La Soirèe! With its sexy stunts, audacious comedy and enchanting setting, nestled as it is in the Museum Gardens, it sparked enthusiasm for the Fringe World festival’s opening week.
The show is made up of the all too familiar circus acts – such as juggling, unicycles, and acrobats – however each is somehow embellished in a quirky and daring way. Mario, Queen of the Circus, dresses as Freddie Mercury – even juggling to the Queen hit ‘Another One Bites the Dust’ – and leaves the audience in stitches. English duo Denis Lock and Hamish McCann partner a strip tease with acrobatics that intrigues and entices the mind’s wildest thoughts.
The audience is constantly asked to join in on the fun as the host encourages clapping, singing, and copious visits to the bar. The performers invite eager spectators on stage at random, only to surprise them with an impromptu body art reading of Romeo and Juliet, or a unicycle ride. The pace and mood constantly change throughout the show as the characters go from one extreme to the next. From the suspenseful and sultry aerial performer Yammel Rodriguez, who smokes a cigar in stockings and heels while flipping and seductively sliding down the aerial silk, to the upbeat and vivacious cabaret star Miss Frisky singing ABBA in an outrageously glittery gown.
Dressed in a ‘90s metallic hologram outfit, the Hula-Hooping wonder Satya Bella was impressive, however her act felt outdated and uninspiring compared to the contemporary style reflected by the other entertainers. The contortionist Captain Frodo took a more slapstick approach, falling about onstage and dropping the microphone on himself a few too many times. His magical ability to dislocate his shoulders and fit through tennis rackets – swinging them around as an ‘impression of a game of tennis’ – was rather unsettling and even he admitted it “is more painful for you to watch than it is for me to do”.
After the interval, the hype was somewhat over as the acts that followed lacked the high-energy and initial awe of the first half. The second act did however contain one of the most enchanting experiences, as Denis Lock made bubbles dance against the stage lights and take on new shapes. Lock, quite remarkably, reminded the audience that “a bubble’s lifespan is fleeting, fragile and momentary, a lot like our own. So we should make the most of every moment we have!”
La Soirèe is stunning, thrilling and strangely sensual to watch. With previous performances selling out, don’t miss your chance for a wild adventure!
La Soirèe runs until March 6 at the La Soirèe Spiegeltent in the Museum Gardens. Tickets available here.
Words by Melissa Scott