Sensual and alluring, Matador combines scantily clad performers with pulsating English and Spanish beats, and acrobatic acts in a fast-moving show. It is a fusion of dance, circus and burlesque, a modern celebration of forbidden love, carnal desires, passion and pain in its many coloured hues. At its core is acceptance of diversity.
Eleven performers cavort, clamber and, on occasions, dangle in a domed tent over the space of a little over an hour. They are strong and agile, talented artistes dressed in sexy, flowing and provocative costumes who writhe to the music, often body against body. Not infrequently, they disrobe to reveal scant lingerie.
A number of the men don horns, for this is a nonlinear tale of a love-torn bull and a seductive matador. Homoeroticism is another theme. Aerial silks and straps sit comfortably alongside apparatus such as a metallic bull’s horn atop, a broken heart and a bell-shaped contraption.
The atmosphere is steamy and the audience is encouraged to clap and cheer, which it does, urging on the performers. Undoubtedly enriching the offering is the diversity of music, including twists on popular fancies, and evocative lighting. There is constant movement. Even when not on stage, performers are wandering through the crowd, in touching distance of the patrons.
The brainchild of Bass G. Fam, Matador is fiery and ferocious, enticing and invigorating. It is playing at Festival Park, The Vault until 29th October, 2023.
Other reviews you might enjoy:
- Matador (Her Majesty’s Theatre) – theatre review
- Matador la experienca (Meat Market) – theatre review
- Oracle (Regal Theatre) – theatre review
Alex First is a Melbourne based journalist and communications specialist. He contributes to The Blurb on film and theatre.