fringe: le gateau chocolat

le gateau chocolatLe Gateau Chocolat...

That voice!

Let me say that again... THAT VOICE!

That deep, warm, powerful, comforting, beautiful, liquid velvet voice that wraps around you like so much gold sequinned lyrca!

Wow! Just, wow!

Le Gateau Chocolat is an amazing performer... not just the voice, but everything about the show felt incredibly intimate and comfortable. That's helped by the fact that the venue is the Deluxe, a kind of smaller version of the Spiegletent... which compliments the show beautifully.

He also knows how to work a crowd... right from the first moment of coming in from the back of the room and working his way slowly up to the stage during the first number, right through to dragging three lucky "volunteers" up on stage at the end and dressing them in lycra... he doesn't confine the act to the stage, but takes it out to the audience.

The show is kind of divided up into themes... on stage and backstage (not "off stage" as I assumed when he asked the crowd, which got me a Diva Stare and an "I'm watching you" gesture... although in my defence, I couldn't actually see him when he was indicating to the crowd about "backstage")... which do get a little muddled at certain points, but whenever he goes and sits at his dressing table, you can be reasonably certain he's backstage.

Backstage is more casual, not necessarily just the choice of more reflective or heartfelt songs, but it's Le Gateau before he's completely frocked up and ready to "on", and it's hard to say which parts were better. As much as I loved the big over the top outfits (and really, there could have been twice the number of costume changes and I would have been happy... more lycra says I!), seeing that other side to the performance was wonderful.

Unfortunately there were some issues with Le Gateau's headset mike during the show, and the moths and locusts had invaded the tent (although kudos to Le Gateau for not even flinching when a moth flew up and landed on his neck towards the end of a number... he just waited until the song was over before flicking it off) which was a touch distracting at time.

But the main problem is that an hour of Le Gateau Chocolat just wasn't enough!

I'm just glad he was waiting outside as we all filed out of the tent so that I had the opportunity to personally thank him for the show! This is definitely one not to be missed.

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