19th Century Paris, was as all about the artistic community, bohemians, actors, artists, and most relevant, Can-Can dancers. Towards the end of the 19th Century was a time where the people of Paris began to embrace and celebrate these people.
But what happened before the appreciation began? When performers such as the Can-Can dancers were looked down upon, being in the theatre was not something a well respected person did.
This new show freely adapted by Phil Willmott looks at just that. It focuses on a Dancer who falls in love and wants to marry the oldest son of one of the oldest and well to do families within Paris.
The cast is broad and each member brings a different skill. Christian Bontoux (Damjan Mrackovich), the son of Paris’s well known banker is that man engaged to Jane (Kathy Peacock), a muscial theatre star and Can-Can girl. Mrcakovich is not gifted with musical ability however, when he dances, it’s hard to take your eyes off of him, he is full of so much grace that he glides across the stage effortlessly.
The songs, although unrememberable, were fitting for the era the show was set in and the story was a sweet one, of love and devotion yet also having the feeling of belonging to something you know you were meant to do, it shows how Jane is ripped between the two.
Although a musical, I would put this show more in the dance category, the cast were very disciplined making the moves very sharp and very enjoyable but the singing, although not bad, was not the best and neither was the acting.
Kudos to the Adam Haigh the choreographer who clearly knows the Tango and Can-Can dancing, the arrangement of it all was done so well considering the space they had to work with.
Can-Can! is on at the Union Theatre, Southwark, until the 9th March 2019