Fool’s Moon – Soho Theatre, London

Reviewer: James Robertson

Host: Paulina Lenoir

Prepare for an absurd search for love across a crazy cabaret showcase. Fool’s Moon promises a night of hilarious and confounding performers and it does not disappoint.

Created and hosted by the kooky Paulina Lenoir, Fool’s Moon brings together a colourful cast of zany performances by female, non-binary and queer artists who will surprise you, bemuse you and make you worried as to what may happen next. Intended as a showcase of the talents of multiple performers, the entire show is ridiculously pieced together by the theme of love: what it is, how to find it and how to recover from heartbreak.

Lenoir leads the whole showcase as a seamless MC, punctuating each performer with silly and inane skits. Her clownish persona is taut and on point, exemplified by her calm and cool facial expressions hiding a mischievous edge, as though something absurd is always bubbling under the surface of her perfect smile.

If you are a viewer who is squeamish at the prospect of audience interaction, this show might not be for you. Those sat in the front row are at the most at risk, as Lenoir often asks them questions, such as their opinions on love and heartbreak, crafting them into the world of the show. You can become a whole character within the piece.

But it’s the individual performers that bring life and pace to this eclectic showcase. The inexplicable can occur, such as a giant nose with legs dancing to a jazz tune. Crafted and performed by Dolly Kershaw, this giant nose is almost uncanny in its dream-like quality, replete with an inflating and deflating bogie.

Another stand-out is Eliza Nelson’s burlesque stint as Cabbage the Clown. A recurring gag that is done to perfection is the classic act of taking off a set of clothing to find the same thing underneath. Nelson employs this to hilarious effect with at first a giant hat.

Lorna Rose Treen also shines in her skits, such as in an odd, 1940s femme fatale sketch narrated seductively through the haze of multiple cigarettes. Fran Lobo provides two musical interludes that are a change of pace for the show as a whole. Although her ballad and showstopper at the end are worthy tunes for the stage, they do sit uncomfortably with the rest of the performers’ off-centre offerings.

For an unfathomable, but all in all heart-warming and rib-aching night at the theatre, it will do more than just bring a smile to your face to witness the absurdity of Fool’s Moon.

Runs on 13 May and 1 July 2024

The Reviews Hub Score

Absurd cabaret of desire

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The Reviews Hub - London

The Reviews Hub London is under the acting editorship of Richard Maguire. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. Our mission is to provide the most in-depth, nationwide arts coverage online.

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