This is Brasil - The Show
Hot music and dance fresh from the favelas
This article is from 2014.
When the security staff have to stop small boys in the front row from dancing on the stage, it’s a good indicator you’ve got a hit on your hands. This gloriously technicolour, tourists-eye-view of Brazil’s best bits lets you gawk, escape and admire to your heart’s content, for one hour of tops-off, sweaty, grinning circus fun.
All the clichés are present and correct – ‘The Girl from Ipanema’ on jazz flute, the writhing lambada, the hypnotic samba, the flamboyant carnival feathers – but they update the stereotypes with additional scenes of a new favela dance craze, ‘football freestyle’ – where keepie-uppies combine with b-boy dance moves and acrobatics – and percussion instruments are made from recycled beach rubbish.
Displays from the Olympic Capoeirá ceremony team and performers from the National Folkloric Ballet Company of Bahia are gobsmackingly good – their muscly grace and aggressive elegance are a definite highlight, swinging thick thighs over each others faces and grasshoppering neatly over one another as a row of men do speed press-ups.
It’s especially impressive when the same men are shimmying frantically through a dance number a few minutes later.
Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, until 25 Aug (not 12), 8pm, £13.50--£17 (£11--£15).