Amsterdam's seminal Supperclub has inspired many imitators. The official London version was relaunched last week to much fanfare and celebs aplenty while fellow dinner-cabaret-bed establishment Brickhouse held a press night two days later for its new ensemble offering Lady Beau Peep & The League Of The Extraordinary.
It's very tempting to compare these two very different evenings and we can resist everything but temptation*. Let's take the food for starters. The London Supperclub serves a no-choice nouveau cuisine-inspired selection in eccentric dishes - metal dogbowl, anyone? In contrast, the Brickhouse is more traditional with an actual menu and enjoyable food which wouldn't be out of place in a good-quality gastropub.
The entertainment on offer follows a similar pattern. While the Supperclub's cabaret on press night was superb but sparse, the Brickhouse have gone for a full bill which includes some of London's best and up-and-coming acts. The burlesque is a terrific mix of styles. Geordie goth Betty D'Light has no problem getting her point across in her rubber/latex spider outfit, ballerina Bouncy Hunter gives us pitch-perfect en pointes, Vivid Angel drags a lucky punter on stage for the lapdance of his life and the highly-recommended Luna Rosa effortlessly shimmies her way from a sassy Christina Hendricks-style shuck 'n' jive to a brilliant belly dance.
Kiki Lovechild barely says a word in either of his acts tonight but his accomplished grasp of stagecraft speaks volumes. His musical "furlesque" routine crosses Lucy The Slut with Richard Cheese and comes up trumps. His second act involves the unusual combination of a ball-gag and close-up magic (can't wait to see Paul Daniels try this one) plus a welcome side order of Yakety Sax. Vicious Delicious is a chanteuse dripping with sardonic Gallic wit and before and between each act, Lady Beau Peep does a masterful act of keeping her flock in line and the pace up throughout the night.
The show is ended with two class performances. Marcos The Marvellous arrives on stage recreating the sound and vision of Freddie Mercury in the classic I Want To Break Free video, hoover and all, before stripping down to show off his impeccable pecs (jealous, moi?) and climbing aboard a trapeze in cow-patterned leggings for some aerial acrobatics. The grand finale is Sophia Landi which starts off as ho-hum country girl burlesque before she indulges in some expert fire-eating and then attacking her own metal-plated crotch with an angle grinder, effectively turning herself into a human Catherine Wheel. Cor.
All pictures (c) Tigz Rice
Lady Beau Peep will be compering a revolving cast of entertainers until 18 June. More information and tickets can be found here.
Four courses plus entertainment costs £35-£40 per person. Entertainment and refreshment on our visit was footed by management.