Le Gateau Chocolat – I heart Chocolat

If you thought you’d seen it all before, think again: Le Gateau Chocolat is here to shake up your festival. Coming on stage dressed in sparkly, skin-tight lycra and wonderful Mariah Carey-style wig, the cake in question is a beautiful, undulating black man, quivering with infectious energy and a palpable sense of joy at entertaining us tonight. The superb and understated backing band kick off proceedings with a bouncing rendition of Isaac Hayes’ ‘Chocolate Salty Balls’, while Le Gateau invites audience members to supply alternative verbs for ‘suck’ – ‘scramble my balls’ being one of the more original. All of this sets the mood for a night full of laughter and surprises. Structured around the chocolatey theme, Le Gateau selects participants to pick a choc from a box, the flavour of which he then attempts to sneak into the following song. The fact that he shoehorns said flavour (pause…’toffee!’…continue singing) with no pretence of subtlety is one of his many charms. And there are many. Le Gateau is a natural entertainer and handles his audience with respect and warmth. We are onside from the get-go.

Treat yourself to a big slice of guiltless fun and leave with a massive smile on your face!

The real star of the show is the voice, of course. It’s easy to get caught up in the good-natured fun and many dazzling costume changes, but Le Gateau has a strikingly versatile voice. He is comfortable belting out operatic, ballsy, versions of disco classics, yet can also dumbfound you with beautiful and haunting love songs. A case in point is halfway through when the wig comes off and Le Gateau stands to the side of the stage in a leotard, under a single, unforgiving spotlight. This is a shock from the previous bawdy razzle-dazzle; and the choice of track (Nick Cave’s ‘The Ship Song’) showcases an achingly vulnerable, Antony Hegarty-like falsetto.

Then he’s off again and enlisting an over-excited fan to zip up his Dalmatian costume as he embarks on a hilarious deconstruction of the recent film, Les Miserables. His energy and the goodwill he inspires forces us all up from our seats for a final song, as we boogie on into the night to the strains of ‘Vogue’.

Treat yourself to a big slice of guiltless fun and leave with a massive smile on your face!

Reviews by Ella Moran-Jones

theSpace @ Symposium Hall

The Mercenary Fiddler AKA Elsa Jean McTaggart

★★★
The Jazz Bar

Nick Harper

★★★★
Acoustic Music Centre @ St Bride's

Mairearad and Anna

★★★★★
The Jazz Bar

Newt North

★★★★
Acoustic Music Centre @ St Bride's

John Renbourn and Wizz Jones

★★★
The Jazz Bar

Americana Road Trip

★★★★

Performances

The Blurb

The larger-than-life, operatic star of La Soirée returns with his new lycra-clad extravaganza! A night of indulgence from Time Out London’s top 10 cabaret stars. ‘The biggest voice in town. Global domination awaits!’ (Time Out).