Australian Dance Reviews

La Soirée

Sydney Opera House
January 15, 2014

By Renata Ogayar of Dance Informa.

After two consecutive sell-out seasons in 2012 and 2013 across the globe, from Stockholm, London, Paris, to Chicago and New York, embracing their sensational Burlesque style, La Soirée heated up the Sydney Summer with their 2014 show.

Steamy, Sexy and a little bit cheeky, the circus flare of La Soirée was certainly a treat for a mid week night!

Wednesday, 15th January, was the opening night at Sydney Opera House. The perfect audience warmer comprised of three indigenous Djuki Mala dancers (the Chooky Dancers) who are known for their fusion of traditional Aboriginal and contemporary dance to “Zorba the Greek”. They were dressed in customary costumes and moved around the small circular stage in a cyclic fashion to traditional music. Moments later they broke out into peculiar and comedic movements accompanied by not so traditional tunes, bringing the house down with laughter.

Smoke filled the theatre as red lights flashed wildly. The music was blasted and the party had started. The audience went crazy, as did the performers. The buzz was electric and the show had begun.

The atmosphere suddenly changed as two of the world’s most talented aerial artists,  Hugo Desmarais and Katharine Arnold took to the stage, twisting and twirling in around the space to the song ‘The Final Count Down.’ The duo demonstrated incredible fluid technique and style; elastic ability and strength whilst holding the splits mid air and other shapes that counter balanced each other’s weight. It was hot. It was sexy. It was mystically entertaining!

Acts included David and Fofo’s juggling, trapeze work, ping-pong passion, mischievous poetry readings, drag queen song and dance spectaculars, outrageous costumes and even…oh yes...a little striptease!

The act that held the audience quietly captivated was none other than Ryan McCarthy and his aerial performance. The hook was his causally cool style and smooth stage presence. After taking a drink from a glass bottle and tossing it away, in a suave and unexpected manner he grabbed his apparatus and lifted himself mid-air with one arm. He contorted and turned his body into various contours and extensions with style, control and masculine grace. He oozed sex appeal as his chiseled form was revealed with the theatrical lighting.

It was indeed a successful first night that was followed by drinks, nibbles and a dance floor for all that lasted till early hours of the evening.

La Soirée was shameless, sassy and diverse. The show is definitely not for the kids but indeed a delight for the adults.

Photo (top): La Soirée. Photo courtesy of Sydney Opera House.

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