Having really enjoyed the Burlesque performance from Cardiff Cabaret Club at the same venue a few weeks ago, I was very excited to see how the men would compare in this Boylesque version of the genre. Now, these guys had a head start on their female counterparts with this reviewer, taking into account that I might, shall we say, have more of an appreciation for the male form.
The evening was hosted by Dis Charge who set the tone for the night by splitting the audience into three sections… top, versatile and bottom. I didn’t get the section best suited to me but it was nice to be a top for once all the same.
Then came the boys, with Lou Safire up first: complete with feathered wings and not much else, he wooed us with a gentle opening straight out of the 1930s, with humorous dashes behind a backlit curtain to grab a breath and a drink. Romeo de la Cruz came next, with the spotlight firmly fixed upon them. Here was a brilliantly choreographed performance which felt more street dance than burlesque but a real highlight of the night.
Perhaps the most amusing performance came from Schnitzel Von Crumpet with his LED hoops. Dressed in a cowboy outfit, he swung his hoop with gusto, at times looking like he wasn’t sure what was coming next. But off came the clothes, item by item, in the most inelegant way imaginable – and it got some laughter from this sellout audience.
The star turn of the evening came from Foo Foo La Belle, who had programmed this event. As was the case a few weeks ago, she stole the show with superior routines and production values to those around her. Her GloBot outfit, complete with flashing helmet, was a joy. Cortina Ford Kebab brought real humour to her segment, leaving very little to the imagination and delighting the audience as she peeled off the layers to one of the biggest cheers of the night.
Danny Ash finished us off dressed as a mechanic in a turn definitely more from the stripper mould than burlesque. Indeed, at times the evening seemed to lack the smoulder and subtlety of the genre, feeling a little less tease and a little more sleaze.
Still, I enjoyed it, as did the whooping audience around me – and special mention must go to stage bunny Fosse Smalls who worked so hard to clear the stage between acts. She had her work cut out!
Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff Bay, Sat 7 Aug
words JAMIE REES