Why La Clique is the Christmas show London needs

La Clique review and star rating: ★★★

Ah, Christmas time, the season when cabaret, the most under-used but most incredible art form, gets taken out from the box under the three and given a chance to shine on the capital’s main stages. Christmas parties will have aerial performers dangling from rings and a range of barmy live events take place across the capital.

Some of the cabaret shows across London (not naming any names) feel a little too sanitised and commercialised. By that I mean hot people spinning around in hoops for the male gaze. La Clique manages to not feel like that, which is quite something, given it’s marketed as a mainstream offering and takes place in the middle of Leicester Square. (Don’t worry it’s a surprisingly cosy spiegeltent.)

There are half a dozen acts, and the most memorable ones are the most bonkers. There is the Australian Tara Boom, who wears a popcorn machine on her head and plugs it into the mains (we won’t spoil the rest of the brilliant madness) and there is Cabaret Decandance with some amazing puppet versions of some of pop’s biggest icons. (Again we won’t ruin anything.) Chastity Belt is a joyous ode to carefree living, paying homage to cabaret’s roots by telling the audience warmly that they’re all misfits and weirdos or they wouldn’t have made it through the doors. It’s risky but not too much, just the kind of provocative behaviour that’ll make the home counties ticket holders think. Oh, and she sings beautifully.

My only gripe is that La Clique tends to recycle many of its performers, and some of the actual skits, year after year. It obviously makes the show feel predictable and less surprising for return visitors, so I’d love them to keep switching it up. 

La Clique is bookable online