Running until: 28th August
Ticket link: https://www.roundhouse.org.uk/whats-on/2022/fashion-freak-show/
This incredible piece created by famous fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier, while dubbed as a musical revue, is part exhibition, part ballet, part performance art all about his life in fashion. Travelling across time and genres, this unique production allows the audience to feel at home in their originalities and things that make them “a freak”. After all, as we discover in the piece, it’s what JPG made an entire career out of.
A mix of filmed sequences and live performance ranging from a dance off to aerialists to cabaret, there is something for everyone in this production. Nearly all of it is driven by songs with no real script. There’s one scene that is scripted in the middle of the first half which does slow down the pace. But it makes up for it in the remainder of the show. Despite having no real dialogue, the story is told so visually, it’s so accessible to follow. And that’s largely in part to the exceptional choreography by Marion Motin.
The piece whisks the crowd along with for the ride, almost like we’re travelling in time with JPG. There’s a beautiful section about the AIDS crisis and a great moment where Madonna’s ‘Express Yourself’ is changed to ‘Protect Yourself’. So much so, the performers were actually giving out condoms to the audience.
And of course, the only person who could recreate these costumes is Jean Paul Gaultier himself. Which of course we’re going to be sublime and they absolutely are. The piece opens with these fantastic teddy bear costumes symbolising the start of JPG’s career, which were so well done.
Overall, I think this is something super different in London’s live entertainment scene right now. I know basically nothing about fashion but still found this to be really enjoyable and entertaining. There is quite a lot of explicit content in this that I did feel was a bit too much at times. But overall, a really great time.
Categories: On Stage