Chaps, take note: Madame Zingara’s travelling theatre cum supper club is camped on these shores until the middle of February. Its unlikely location, a windblown industrial site in Battersea with the sombre spectre of the power station looming large in the background, makes it an impressive candidate for a surprise night out for one’s missus. Hint, and double hint.
On arrival, a corseted and magnificently bearded woman softly ushered us into the Lynchian, candle-lit and mirrored circus-tent. Later, we realise that the peculiar cast of characters touring the room are this evening’s performers: the gentleman on rollerskates in the voluminous frock and wig is reincarnated as a marvellously comic aerial acrobat, the Marie Antoinette-a-like luxuriating in her daybed we later spot swinging from the rafters.
Our hostess for the evening, ran through the short menu and any unusual arrangements – no table service during trapeze acts, for obvious reasons – with enthusiasm and warmth. The food courses are served at intervals between acts with polished efficiency. Soups and antipasto to nibble on arrived at our table on arrival, followed by a competent home-made ravioli. The mains appeared, rather maddeningly, while the fabulous in-house soul singers were getting into their groove, and our valiant attempts to dance, clap and sing along while chomping on chilli chocolate covered beef fillet and pepper encrusted salmon gave us a sore case of indigestion. It was an enormous amount of fun regardless.
The flesh on our plates was almost matched in terms of quantity by that in the show. In particular, the sight of the Brazilian double strong-man act in their miniscule leather shorts made all of the ladies swoon – and many of the men too.
After the show, the stage became a dancefloor with a DJ playing the standard cheesy party hits – the Grease Megamix, anyone? An incongruous finale to an otherwise sophisticated, adult evening out.
Madame Zingara’s Theatre of Dreams is at Battersea Power Station now and booking till the end of January. Live show, four-course meal and welcome drinks – £75-£115 a head. Meal & show included in price, buy your own drinks from the bar. Get your tickets online or by calling 0844 338 8888.