Underbelly, London – until 30 September 2018
By an anonymous guest critic
Black Cat: Bohemia is a French-style cabaret show combining many exciting acts, including fire eating, aerial choreography and hula-hoop jumping. All of this is interspersed with lots of singing and dancing.
Our compere for the evening is Miss Frisky, played by Laura Corcoran, who ingratiates the audience with some improvised witty banter and then displays an amazing singing voice in between the various performance acts. At one point she does a brilliant rendition of the Kate Bush song ‘Wow’.
The acts themselves all deliver brilliantly although one of the performers sustained an injury mid-show and couldn’t continue. The whole performance was therefore rejigged slightly by the brilliant stage management and the show continued on flawlessly.
First off we have Slippin’ Jo (Jo Moss) who showed extraordinary skill when using the wheel (a sort of giant hula-hoop). We are then treated to Danger K (Katherine Arnold) who performs some amazing aerial stunt work accompanied by Miss Frisky singing a slow version of ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’. This was followed by an eye-catching fire performance from Missy Fatale (Hayley Harvey-Gomez). In between there are some spellbinding gymnastic somersaulting from Charlotte O’Sullivan and the two Knaves (Nicolas Jelmoni and LJ Marles). The two Knaves, in particular, are responsible for much of the comedy in the show. They are like two mischievous clowns taunting each other and the other acts. They both also happen to be incredible acrobats.
At 70 minutes long, this is an excellent evening’s entertainment. It’s not high brow and it’s not pretending to be. The director (Sean Kempton) and the cast just want to give the audience an exciting, alternative variety show and in this they certainly succeed. Comedy, singing, amazing acrobatics. What more could you ask for?