An evening with La Soiree!

La Soiree theatre west end

I’d received a couple of emails about the show La Soiree… well the children’s version actually, La Petite Soiree, which by all accounts is a watered down version, and I thought it sounded great! I wondered if I could get a chance to take my kids to see it sometime before Christmas but with one thing or another, there just wasn’t time.

Then, on my return to work, a colleague mentioned the show in passing, telling us she’d booked to go and see it…. the adult version! She said she absolutely loved it and it had become a bit of a yearly ritual for her now, something she went to see with her husband and some friends! Kicking myself for not booking, a few days later I received an email to say the show was closing soon so I thought… Right… I MUST see the show before it closes for the season!

Which I did! The ADULT version. Last week I grabbed a friend and we headed out for an evening with La Soiree!

La Soiree is, in it’s own words, a ‘theatrical phenomenon’… I think I would go along with that to a degree! It’s definitely not the usual West End musical I normally prefer to go and see! It’s completely bonkers with lots of adult humour being thrown about, which I’ll go into a bit later! I would describe it as a cabaret night featuring a variety of acts such as circus skills, burlesque, singing and comedy!

la soiree aldwych theatre london west end

Aldwych Theatre is the venue for this crazy show. It’s the first time La Soiree has been in the West End and they are so incredibly excited about it! It’s origins come from the after hours club nights at the Edinburgh Fringe and they have taken it all over the world, even playing Glastonbury… before finally taking up residence in this beautiful theatre for the festive run!

On arrival, my friend and I were shown to our seats by one of the theatre Ushers who to my astonishment, I knew!  He attended the same dance school as my daughter and he was friends with my 19yr old son back when they were younger! How funny! He recognised me instantly and we had a lovely chat… he’s now an actor but works at the Aldwych Theatre in between jobs! Anyway, our allocated seats were ‘ringside’… keeping in with the circus theme! The stage itself is a circular platform in front of the actual theatre stage which now has tables and chairs on it. These are for the audience too. I had heard that there’s a fair amount of audience participation in the show, so I was guessing the people in the ringside seats (us) would be prime targets!

My little friend though, the Usher, had other ideas for us! He wanted to upgrade us to the ‘posh seats’ that were on the stage! Knowing the acts would be swapping between that stage and the circular stage I was slightly reluctant. We would DEFINITELY be in the firing line… but my friend was eager so up we went!

La soiree aldwych theatre london

There was a great atmosphere in the auditorium. I got the feeling that La Soiree was one of those shows that people returned to again and again with friends or work colleagues! Certainly, looking around us at there seemed to be a corporate feel to some of the groups of friends watching. Maybe because it was midweek, people catching the show after work!

The small group seated on the table next to us, who let’s just say were under the influence, were already up for whatever the night had in store for them! They’d been to see it a number of times and one of the women said she hoped we didn’t mind being dragged up by some of the acts because that definitely would happen! We had a giggle with them and nervously looked forward to the start of the show!

at the theatre la soiree london aldwych

Then the show began… first up was a male duo from India who were acrobats performing an ancient art of mallakhamb, which involved a large wooden pole and incredible strength and skill! They also wasted no time in dragging someone up to dance with them in between moves… that person was my friend haha! She loved it though dancing away centre stage!

la soiree

Next up was Montreal’s Cabaret Decandanse who performed a couple of songs throughout the show with puppets. Each one being slightly more risque than the last! The puppeteers were just as good as the puppets themselves… I couldn’t take my eyes of the male one!

la soiree aldwych

A comedy duo came on next and straight away I was nervous! They were all over the audience…. I knew there was going to be some joining in here! They too had a couple of stints in the show. Called Daredevil Chicken, their first act involved chewing bananas and spitting it out into each others mouths! Gross! Not for me that one! Later they had a member of audience up with the woman part of the duo. A young guy who she got dancing and generally looking a bit silly. He seemed to enjoy it though… I was cringing! Then the guy from the duo had his most private part flapping around later on… I mean, we were NOT expecting that but it WAS funny, my friend and I couldn’t stop laughing!

la soiree aldwych theatre

One fab act was The Incredible Hula Boy! Dancing and spinning hoops to yodeling music in a funny little Austrian costume…. he had the most unusual look about him, a cheeky boy face that we found mesmerising! Totally bizarre!

la soiree theatre london

There are many acts involved in an evening of La Soiree which are rotated on a nightly basis so we obviously only saw a handful of offerings on the night we went!

I enjoyed some of the more acrobatic acts, like this girl.. Katherine Arnold who spun around the auditorium in this hoop!

la soiree

And Leon and Klodi who danced a gorgeously sexy gymnastic routine.

la soiree leon and klodi

The Chilly Brothers were a fantastic human flying trapeze act which were highly impressive!

la soiree the chilly brothers

One act I can’t go without mentioning was Amy G, who played a few sets on the night too! One of the favourites, she’s a legend on the international cabaret scene. A comic powerhouse with a spectacular voice, she’s been likened to Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. She was great with the audience, including myself… yes I didn’t get away with it… she cornered me and sang to me in a provocative manor, as she did to quite a few others! It’s brilliant the way some people interact…. almost wanting the attention and she was happy to give it to them! Amy G has played in over 40 countries, 7 languages, and on La Soiree’s little red stage for over a decade. She belts out songs, roller skates and also gets quite kinky towards the end!

la soiree amy g west end theatre aldwych

A few more acts were involved on the night and the show seemed to run along at an almost dizzying speed! The mixture of acts of comedy, skill and sauciness made it a truly unique evening. We had a brilliant time watching La Soiree and I would recommend it to anyone! If you want to be more of a spectator it’s all good… you can sit anywhere in the auditorium as the acts only pick out people in close proximity to the stage. They also look for eye contact before choosing their ‘victims’ haha so they have an idea of who’s up for some fun! And believe me, there’s no shortage of willing participants!

Audiences have just over a week left to catch the show and it’s brand new family-friendly sister show, La Petite Soirée… which has all the fantastic acts but without the sauce! Both shows will be ending on 3 February 2018. For tickets, head over the La Soiree website for seating plans as prices do vary widely.

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