Extreme circus Cirque Beserk is not for the faint hearted | Theatre | Entertainment
Was Cirque du Soleil too soft, tasteful and tame for you? Beware what you wish for, Cirque Berserk is not for the fainthearted.
Back at London’s Peacock Theatre for a fifth successive year, this thrilling, death-defying, glorious and gut-punching show feels like Cirque du Soleil when the gloves and safety wheels come off.
And speaking of wheels, just wait for the motorbikes in a giant metal ball. You have been warned.
The entire show is ruthlessly designed to have your heart hammering with adrenaline and your pulse beating as a succession of acts risk life and limb for your enjoyment (and terror).
Despite generally not being prone to squirming or squeamishness, i found myself suspended somewhere between jaw-dropped delight at the acrobatic, testosterone-fueled feats of danger and skill, while struggling not just hide my face and scream at acs I couldn’t quite believe I was seeing or bear to watch.
As expected, the much-touted highlight act ominously known as the Globe of Death was astonishing! It consisted of four motorcycles – yes, motorcycles – making their way from the stage into the spherical metal cage.
The ultimate example of boys and their toys is petrol-fueled, petrifying crowd-thriller.
They had teased the act earlier on in the evening with two motorcycles circling a strutting woman in the ring of terror, which already had the entire audience on the edge of their seats (and under them).
A personal highlight was the stunning Mongolian elastic goddess who casually made her entrance by emerging from glass jar, like a sexy human version of the Enchanted Rose from Beauty and the Beast.
This show really is all about the boys, though.
The laddish displays from street artists, Argentinian cowboys and Cuban troops were cocky and courageous, but also kept the audience involved like part of a giant (slightly insane) gang.
The liveliness and humour never flagged throughout the performances. Whatever ludicrous risk-taking and extraordinary talent was on display, it was carried off with such enjoyment that the infectious good spirits lifted every member of the exhilarated crowd.
Cirque du Soleil is undeniably magnificent but can feel a little calculated and controlled.
This is like the black sheep of the family that ran off and joined a biker gang that might roar into town but still stop at the lights to help a little old lady across the road.
Anarchic and outrageous, this is gripping grown up fun that makes you wish you were a kid again so you could run away and join the circus.
Big, brash and totally Berserkus, this is just what London needs to shake off the winter chill.
Cirque Berserk! runs until Feb 17 at The Peacock, Portugal Street, Holborn, WC2A 2HT, London Tickets from £15.
Call 020 7863 8222 or go to: www.peacocktheatre.com/whats-on/zippos-cirque-berserk/