Cuisine & Confessions

Written on November 20th, 2016

Cooking with Acrobats  

In 2002, seven self-described circus artists came together in Montreal to form Les 7 Doigts or The 7 Fingers. Following on the success of Cirque de Soliel, they have been gathering acrobats, gymnasts and trapeze artists from around the world and putting together shows for the last 15 years.  Their latest spectacle, Cuisine & Confessions, has landed at Mirvish’s Princess of Wales Theatre.

Anyone who appreciates the talent, practice and hard work that goes into acrobatics will love this show. If you are a fan of Cirque-type shows, this is probably considered very good.  But to those of us who aren’t schooled in what is needed for great acrobatics it wears thin by the end of the one and a half hour presentation.

Yes, they are very good, and we got that after the end of the first half hour. After that it seems rather repetitive.Cuisine Confessions 1

They have tried to create a story of cooking in the kitchen and telling their life histories.  Unfortunately, it all seems a little disjointed.  The link between acrobatics and cooking is very tenuous.

Before the show begins, cast members pick people out of the audience to help with the meal preparation, chopping vegetables and stirring batter for banana bread.

Then time is spent juggling knives or presenting yo-yo-like tricks with a giant spool. There is amazing trapeze work with long scarves of fabric, and daring acts sliding and swinging from a tall pole.

In between, cast members tell true stories from their lives, about their kitchens or the food they grew up eating.  It is interesting in that they come from various counties – U.S., France, Sweden, Russia, Finland or Argentina – but other than that, they are somewhat mundane stories that don’t make particularly exciting theatre.  These stories need some re-writing or even some embellishment to create interest.

So while it can be a fascinating look at the strength and agility of these amazing acrobats, it isn’t enough to create an entire show.  They have failed to adequately tie in cooking and kitchens and it all seems a little contrived.

Cuisine & Confessions continues with eight shows a week at the Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto until December 4.  Call Ticket King 416-872-1212 or 1-800-461-3333 or visit for tickets.

Photo: Acrobats in the kitchen.  Photo by Alexandre Galliez.

Cuisine & Confessions
Created, directed and staged by Shana Carroll & Sebastien Soldevila
Performed by Sidney Bateman, Nelson Caillard, Melvin Diggs, Mishannock Ferrero, Anna Kachalova, Anna Kichtchenko, Nella Niva, Matias Plaul, Pablo Pramparo.
Produced by David Mirvish and Les 7 Doigts (The 7 Fingers)
Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto
November 1 to December 4, 2016
Reviewed by Mary Alderson

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