Jewels of Paris *REVIEW*
When I was invited by Mr Lawrence Helman to come and review this show I was reluctant. I had never heard of the Thrillpeddlers, the troupe who star in the show, nor had I ever heard of the Hypnodrome, the theatre where their events take place. After doing a bit of research I found that one of my gogo boys (Steven Satyricon) and his partner were involved so I figured I would give it a shot, if nothing more than to support them and if it sucked, it sucked. The Thrillpeddlers production of Jewels of Paris most definitely did not suck. It was one of the most creative, original and entertaining shows I have had the pleasure of reviewing yet.
The cast is large, about 15 actors and they each play a multitude of different characters. At times it gets difficult to figure out who is who, but each character is well developed and interesting, so it really doesn’t matter who you end up watching. From foxes to bearded ladies, naked chefs to whores, police men to Pierrots, each actor shows a very wide range. Not only do they all act and in many roles, everyone sings live and quite well at that. I for one got the chills a few times myself as I often do when live acts harmonize well. I’m gay, I know. There is also quite a bit of dancing and choreography on what is a fairly small stage (the Hypnodrome itself is quite tiny, only holding about 45 patrons at a time). Being a veteran of the infamously tiny Monster Show stage, I know choreographed dancing isn’t something that is easy to pull off without much space, however the actors here do so effortlessly.
Let’s get into a little bit of the story of the show itself. I’m not going to give away too many details, because I want you all to go see this show and be as oblivious and entertained as my guest and I were. So I will steal a little blurb from their press release so you have an idea of what you are getting yourselves into:
“JEWELS OF PARIS, a celebration of Paris in song and spectacle featuring music by master composer Scrumbly Koldewyn opening Thurs. March 19, 2015 (previews March 12, 13 & 14.). Inspired by the artistic revolution erupting in Paris nearly a century ago, Jewels of Paris is a tuneful, time-traveling testament that revels in love, life, artistic, social and sexual change – seen through the eyes and ears of Parisian luminaries including Pierrot, Picasso, Cocteau, Josephine Baker and even Marie Antoinette.”
So think Moulin Rouge, but raunchier and with better singing. This show is quite raunchy by the way. There is quite a bit of nudity by both female and male actors. If that is something that bothers you then this might not be your kind of gig. However, if you are reading this on fucking Antitwink.com then I am confident you are into all things raunch. One of my favorite scenes was between Steven and his partner Andrew when they sing and act a little diddy while eating each other out wearing nothing but chef hats and aprons. Yeah, it’s like that.
I highly recommend everyone check out this show. It’s very entertaining and had my guest and I talking all night. The Hypnodrome is such an amazing little theatre as well. The decor and artwork that covers its walls is simply amazing. There is a small bar as well with beer and bottled water, soda etc AND fresh popcorn. I would recommend when you purchase your tickets that you get a ‘shock box’. Think sky boxes at a sports stadium. Except these are cleverly themed and cozy. We were lucky enough to be seated in the Pharaoh’s Tomb, covered in plush furs and pillows with Egyptian decor throughout. The shock boxes also hold a secret, which I was told were being used for the first time in a non-horror themed production for Jewels of Paris. If the shock boxes are gone the Turkish Lounge looked comfy as well. You get to lounge on some fancy rugs and pillows elevated below the boxes. General admission tickets are available as well.
Jewels runs until May 2nd 2015, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night at 8PM. As I mentioned above the theatre only seats about 45, so make sure you purchase your tickets online ahead of time. There were a few people at the theatre the night I came that had to be turned away due to the show being sold out in advance. The Hypnodrome is located at 575 10th Street in SOMA. Tickets can be purchased HERE!
Tags: Hypnodrome, Jewels of Paris, Thrillpeddlers