This playful, cheeky and sexy show makes a delightful return to London.

(c)Craig Sugden

It is a real pleasure to see this show back in London again. A celebration of the diversity of talent for those who thanks to certain pandemic had to stop what they what they know and love to do feels like we are slowly (and cautiously) getting back some normality.

Hosted by Bernie Dieter, whose energy and enthusiasm keeps the audience throughly engaged (even managing to include a funny song about COVID which goes down well), La Clique is certainly a playfully sexy show with acts who are mind-blowingly talented that you don’t ever want the show to end.

Mirko Köckenberger ‘s extraordinary acrobatic moves in his act really dazzles (who knew it was possible to get in and out of clothes while doing a handstand?). But it is also filled with a playfulness and the way in which he engages with the audience really adds to the intimacy. This could also be said for J’aimime’s performance of “balloon eats awkward blonde girl” (which is really a quite apt description of what happens) – yes it is silly but endearingly so that makes it really entertaining to watch.

But of course there is also an element of danger to be found in certain performances. Heather Holiday breathing fire and swallowing swords is just one such example. Holiday makes it look natural (which I could tell even when watching through my fingers) and sexy – but just as importantly really classy. Meanwhile, The Skating Willers III also offer a thrilling performance that really highlights their skills of balance, technique and performance to dazzling effect.

While much of the vibe of the show is very much adult themed, there is also a bit of childlike joy about it too thanks to Craig Reid’s charming hoola-hoop act and then later on in the show the classic quick change act with Mirko Köckenberger really brings home the fact that no matter how grown up we are – we still love magic and embracing our inner child.

There is so much energy that goes into this production and David Bates has certainly put together a really dynamic show. However, there are some moments in which the transitions from one act to the next don’t feel as seamless as they could do, making it feel slightly clunky in places – if these are smoothed out a little bit more then it would take the show up to another level. But there is no denying that the diversity of talent on display and the overall intimate feel of the show makes La Clique a thrill to watch.

By Emma Clarendon

La Clique will continue to perform until the 8th January. You can book your tickets by clicking here or visiting: Love Theatre.com, London Theatre Direct, From the Box Office, Last Minute.com or Theatre Tickets Direct.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐