A Melbourne based writer who is a travel junkie, dedicated foodie and emerging photographer.
Baby it's cold outside, but things get STEAMY in the tent
It's a crazy idea - a winter fun park set up by the beach in St Kilda, right next to Luna Park, complete with a ferris wheel, sideshows, an ice skating rink, pop up food trucks, a bar and a spiegeltent. It's cold at night on the foreshore, and some motivation is needed to entice Melbournians out of their cosy homes.
The Aurora Spiegeltent at St Kilda's Winter Garden (writer's image)
Well, I have the motivation for you, and it's a wonderful show called Blanc de Blanc, playing in the Aurora Spiegeltent at the Winter Park precinct, St Kilda until Sunday 30th July. It's warm inside the tent and this show is HOT.
Blanc de Blanc is your classic cabaret meets burlesque style show, perfectly suited to the format of the traditional spiegeltent. Throughout this two hour performance (including a 20 minute intermission), the audience is treated to a smorgasbord of cabaret delights, from the remarkable to the ridiculous, and everything in between.
It may be cold outside, but things are hot inside the tent.
The show is compered by French born Monsieur Romeo, who quickly sets the tone with his honeyed French accent, fruitier than a French champagne. We later learn that Monsieur Romeo is happy to take the plunge and get his gear off, watching some of the show from the vantage point of the strategically placed spa bath.
Monsieur Romeo is supported in the narrative role by his straight acting foil, Spencer Novich. Capably taking on the comic relief role during the show, Novich gets to demonstrate some of his other talents in an act that highlights his dexterity in mime and contortion.
Masha Teretieva - does amazing things with a luggage trolley!
Other than the clever banter between these two, the audience is treated to a series of stunning acts by the nine or so performers, including some top notch acrobatic acts. Standouts included the luggage trolley act by Masha Teretieva, and the acrobatic performance by the very physical Shun Sugimoto.
But the act of the night for me came in the second half of the show. I'm fairly confident I've never before used the word 'mesmerising' in a review, but the beautiful aerial acrobatic act with Milena Straczynski and Hampus Jansson was just that. I'm sure I sat there open-mouthed as I watched the perfect synchronicity between the two as they twirled, spiralled and plunged their way through their stunning performance. Wow!
I have seen a few shows of this type in a spiegeltent format, and this is without question the best. With this sort of show, there tends to be high and low points, and you find yourself wanting the less exciting points of the show to pass quickly so you get back to the 'highs'. But in Blanc de Blanc, I felt entertained throughout. There's a real depth to the talent of this troupe, with many awards to their credit between them, and it shows in their quality performance.
I found myself wishing the show had gone longer, I was enjoying it all so much!
I highly recommend this show, so please, don your winter woolies, brave the cold, and head down to St Kilda. I promise it will be well worth the effort.
Tickets to Blanc de Blanc are full (general admission): $65, concession: $55. There are also premium seats available for $78. Click here to buy your tickets online. Please check the website for session times as they vary.
Please note that Blanc de Blanc is an adults only show, containing nudity, coarse language, sexual references and smoke effects.
The Aurora Spiegeltent is a licensed venue, with a range of drinks available at reasonable bar prices.
Except where indicated, the images in this article were taken from the Blanc de Blanc Facebook page.