After three different Blanc De Blanc experiences at Spiegletent in Civic Park since my introduction in April of 2022, I'm starting to notice a trend. A rush of excitement in the hours before, a night that never ends when the show does, and a dull, glowing headache the next morning.
Friday night's Blanc De Blanc Encore was balls to the wall, literally and figuratively. I arrived early with my plus one to have some drinks and take photos, see and be seen. There was a nip in the air and a big crowd of people dressed to impress. We hung back until the show started and then we entered the circus marquee to be dazzled and disturbed.
Blanc de Blanc is not for the easily offended, the modest, or anyone who has a fear of being pulled onto the stage and becoming part of the act.
"Tonight is the night of the utmost class and sophistication" they tell us.
The show had barely started when suddenly the charming, nerdy North American was frolicking through the crowd with his testicles protruding from his trousers. He stood on a chair to my right and we got a fairly good look. Was it a prosthetic?! I don't think so, but I won't elaborate on all the details as to why. He and his French partner in crime were the shenanigan show stealers, shocking the crowd over and over again, always with blatant references and demonstrations. They discussed "happiness" (a penis) and a French flag hid his crotch and a microphone for us to hear the music of his well-practiced 'instrument."
"Is the dick microphone on?" He repeatedly asked.
They were flamboyant but boyish, throwing and catching grapes in their mouth and inviting the audience to do the same. Later that evening a woman dressed in the most delicate feminine pink dress performed a masturbatory dance, wowing us with the unrelenting speed of her wrists.
It's rude and crude but always with sparkles, pizzazz, and mind-boggling talent. The international crew of performers display incredible strength, flexibility, balance, impeccable timing and a variety of theatrical skills. They love holding our suspense and suspending themselves; they spiralled above us regularly, via pole, trapeze and aerial ropes.
Champagne of course is always a part of these shows; the performers tease the crowd with it, and the audience holds their glasses out, always thirsty for something.
Particularly memorable this time was the hula hooper with grace and poise as she brought more and more hula hoops into her routine.
Also the contortionist waltzed onto stage and then made the audience collectively gasp at his ability to twist his neck. It sent shivers down my spine.
I appreciated just the fun simplicity too, sexy maids danced through the crowd spraying pretend Windex, and a pillow fight ensued halfway through the show. Feathers went everywhere; all audience members got a chance to hurl a pillow.
One of my favorite things about Blanc de Blanc is how we see crowd members agree to get into character. Well-dressed presumably outstanding members of the community are swept up in the magic, suddenly doing things they'd never do otherwise. It's entertaining in the moment but also evokes bigger questions of herd mentality, social contagion, and inner perverse desires verses public appearances.
I love it. It's a great excuse to get dressed up and drink and run amok; for several hours the rules of society don't apply.