La Clique at Just for Laughs

How do you describe a show which involves a rubber glove, hula hoops, tennis rackets, a bathtub, and a cucumber? Very carefully, I guess is the answer. La Clique is that type of show. It is billed as a sideshow burlesque and I think that this is a rather fitting description of the show. Montrealers might describe it as a Cirque du Soleil on crack. Just don't be scared away thinking that it is too weird or fringe for you; you'll definitely be missing out!

La Clique had its real start at the famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2003 and was the smash hit of the festival. People all over Europe were talking about this unique, awe-inspiring and sexy show. From there it has done extended sold out runs in Melbourne, Australia and Brighton, England.

It is running throughout the entire length of the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival. In entertainment it is often about location and this show has it in spades. La Clique is playing at the Loft (5th floor) of The Musée Juste pour Rire. I had previously never been to this venue and was amazed at how good in general and fitting for this particular show it is. It is not a huge space which is perfect for this show because you want to be up close to these performers. You get to see every facial expression and bead of sweat on their brows or other parts of their bodies. A plus due to the intimacy is that it allows the performers to come out into the audience and interact with them. If you are brave I recommend you find a seat up front. The sound and lighting is also excellent at the venue.

La Clique is circus, burlesque, cabaret, and dinner theatre all rolled into one with nary a dull moment. The show moves along seamlessly from act to act with no lulls in between, so the energy is kept at a high all evening. Everything on this evening has a tongue and cheek about it vis-à-vis sexuality as most of the acts are dripping with sex. Upon entering and hearing the carnival or circus type music that is playing you know that you are in for an out of the ordinary evening of entertainment. I don't want to tell you too much about the show as I think it will ruin your surprise and amazement at the types of acts involved. Just know that it is unlike anything you have ever seen before and is not for the faint of heart. I will warn you there are some moments that where the person I was with had to turn her eyes away from what was happening on stage. There is also full female nudity in the show. So there might be elements in the show that some have to watch through their fingers but most in attendance seemed to not be too disturbed. Also, there is equal opportunity eye candy for both sexes. As the show has traveled the world the performers have changed and previous incarnations of it has included twin contortionists, skaters, a tango duo, and jugglers. In the Montreal version, performers Ursula Martinez, Miss Behave, Yulia Piktina (from the Ukraine), Camille O'Sullivan (from Ireland), Miss Flee, and David O'Mer (from Berlin) are all excellent at what they do and engaging performers. The show runs roughly 90 minutes plus a 15 minute intermission. Each half of the show is good with no weak spots and the time flew. The show brings you through a range of emotions from hilarity to arousal to cringing, but what is most important is that it is a rare night of entertainment that makes you feel.

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