Monthly Archives: May 2016

The UK Lumineers! Shake Shake Go at La Cigale (May 10, 2016)

La Cigale is a packed house tonight for Shake Shake Go. Fans are searching all three floors for the best spot to watch the band. When they take the stage, the crowd erupts! “Thank you Paris! Merci beacoup!” It’s a bilingual night. The lead singer, Poppy Jones, says she doesn’t know much French, but she is taking lessons and her English accent sounds great.

To put it simply, their music is solid. It starts with pounding beats by the drummer, Khilian Saubusse. The lead singer and lead guitarist each a have drum too which strengthens the sound. Then, bass and acoustic guitar are added (Toby Barnett and Virgile Rozand). Marc Le Goff, the cofounder with Poppy, on electric guitar comes next, often with fantastic solos. And to top it all off are the amazing vocals of Poppy. Her voice is so strong and emotional. They sound a lot like The Lumineers of Denver, Colorado. They both feature a lot of drums and fantastic sing along choruses. Shake Shake Go will surely have as much success as them too!

Track Shake Shake Go on Songkick now and catch them next time they are in your town!

Quinn Delaney

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Hilarious! A Farewell Dinner at Theatre Edouard VII (May 7, 2016)

A Farewell Dinner is the hilarious story about a couple (Pierre and Clote) throwing a final dinner for their friend, Antoine. Only, Antoine isn’t moving away; they just want to spend more time alone as a couple without friends. The play is spoken in French with English surtitles. This sets up an interesting moments when parts of the audience laugh at different times. For example, Antoine is telling the story about what his therapist said to him in German. A few people understand German and laugh right away. Then, the English translation is shown which causes more of the audience to laugh just before they finish saying it in French and then finally everyone is in on the joke. The process of reading the surtitles is a bit difficult at first, but eventually it becomes second nature.

Perhaps the funniest scene is when Pierre and Antoine switch clothes to understand each other’s perspectives. And they really do swap all their clothes while hiding behind the couch. Pierre makes it very clear he is uncomfortable with this to hilarious effect. Pierre then goes on to impersonate Antoine which has the whole crowd laughing. “It’s a long story, and I’ll make it very long”. (Antoine had said he would make it short, but he didn’t).

The entire performance was fantastic. The actors became the characters expertly and developed them into fully realized people on stage. All of their comedic chops are spot on. Some of the French references may be lost on foreigners, but the heart of the story applies to all cultures. It’s an excellent choice of entertainment for English speaking visitors and French speaking ones too. Get your tickets now for A Farewell Dinner through June 24th!

Quinn Delaney

Standup Showcase! Sebastian Marx Hosts New York Comedy Night at SoGymnase Featuring Swann Perisse, Rachman Blake, Simon Palomares

Sebastian Marx, a former New Yorker now living in Paris, has started an international comedy show called The New York Comedy Night. He invites English speaking comedians traveling through Paris to his stand up showcase. He starts the show off with a joke about the French Language. He hypothesizes that is was invented during a game of scrabble when one of the players decided to end a word with eaux. “That’s now how you spell that word!” “It is now! And we’ll pronounce it with an o sound!”

Rachman Blake, from San Francisco, told a funny story about driving down to North Carolina to meet an old white woman. “And for those of you who don’t know, being a black man in the South is uncomfortable.” He had sex with her, just for the experience. He was very charming, and it seems he can win over anyone!

Swann Perisse, from France, did an excellent bit about phones running out of battery. Everywhere in the world they say it is running out of battery, but in the US, it is dying! “I can’t go out! My phone is dead!” she says very dramatically.

Simon Palomares, from Madrid, insisted that Spanish is actually the language of love, not French. He insisted he could order a cheeseburger in Spanish and make it sound sexy, and he did! He also said he can’t date women under 30 years old, they still have hope!

Overall, it was a great night of comedy. For ex-pats, it’s great to see performances in English every once in a while. It was a true international party. The price of admission is 10 euros, which includes one drink, of which most of them are worth 10 euros. It’s a great deal and The New York Comedy Night should be at the top of the list for English speaking Parisians and visitors.

Quinn Delaney

Fabulous! Paris je t’aime (Paris I Love You) at La Nouvelle Eve (May 5, 2016)

La Nouvelle Eve presents Paris je t’aime which translates to English as Paris, I love you. It truly is a love letter to Paris. The show begins with a fantastic cabaret dance with beautiful costumes.  Both the women and men are extraordinarily talented. A few of the women slide into splits and the crowd cheers. Then, one of the men slams down to a full split and the audience is amazed.

The performance continues as the dancers clear the stage and a pair of jugglers come on to the stage.   For their greatest trick, they invite an audience member on stage. The unknowing volunteer is from Australia.  The crowd is geographically diverse as there are people from New Zealand, USA, Turkey, and the UK in the audience. They sit their new assistant down and put a pair of glasses on his face, a cigarette in his mouth, and a hat on his head. The jugglers proceed to juggle bowling pins back and forth to each other. They knock out the cigarette, then the hat, then the glasses with a pin that bumps him on the nose! The Aussie wasn’t very pleased with the “accidental bump” but he played along and the audience loved it! The jugglers were very charming and their entire performance was fun and entertaining.

Most of the songs are in French, but all the performers address the audience in English. After another amazing dance performance with even more fanciful costumes, the next entertainer on stage is an “acrobat”.  This whimsical and quirky entertainer impresses his audience by balancing on a bunch of cylinders on their side and standing on them. The cylinders are very wobbly and he looks like he is going to fall the entire time.  The audience is delighted!

One of the best parts of the night was the dancing contest. The lead singer invites three men on stage to teach them a dance move. After a brief lesson, they dance one at a time for about 20 seconds each. It’s hilarious as they try to perform the dance move and then just improvise.

This is a must-see, English friendly, Parisian show. The balance of comedy and dance is perfect. Get your tickets now!

Quinn Delaney

Ska in the UK! Less Than Jake at the Hippodrome (May 2, 2016)

It’s a Monday night in Kingston, just outside of London, and it is packed house. It is May Day after all! It’s a young crowd that quickly gets rowdy when they play “Johnny Quest Thinks We’re Sellouts”. A decent mosh pit forms up close to the stage. Also early on, the band pulls up a 15 year old kid on stage. They comment how they are too old to have his haircut and that he should be grateful he can have medium length hair now. They allow him to watch the rest of the concert from on the stage!

In the middle of the set, one of the lead singers asks the crowd if they are too old for a circle pit. They respond by launching a massive one during the next song. Less Than Jake may have been around 24 years but they still put on a fresh energetic show.  The talking between songs is one of the best parts of the show. “Don’t throw shoes! It chipped my tooth. However, if this is the cost to do what I love for a living, it’s still worth it!”

To close the night, they pay tribute to their hometown, Gainesville, FL, USA. They invite everyone to come to their Wake N Bake Weekend in September. Then, they rock out with “Gainesville Rock City”. The crowd sings along: “All my past mistakes and every misspent day. I wouldn’t have it any other way!” It’s a perfect ska song and sends the audience out onto the streets with smiles on their faces. Catch Less Than Jake on Warped Tour this summer!

Quinn Delaney

Laughed Till It Hurt! Faulty Towers Dining Experience at Charing Cross London (May 1, 2016)

The audience laughed so hard all night that everyone’s face hurt by the end of the experience. The performance started in a beautiful room with chandeliers, artful paintings on the wall, and a full bar. Basil enters and asks Manuel to clean the glasses. Manuel starts grabbing eyeglasses off the faces of people in the audience! The crowd erupts in laughter.   “Manuel!” shouts Basil. “Not those glasses! These glasses!” as he holds up an empty drink glass. Basil takes all the eyeglasses from Manuel. “Who has the Ray-Ban Sunglasses? You don’t need these, you are in London!” “Who has the designer glasses? I see you didn’t get a coat to match it!” “Who has the non-designer eye glasses? You can see the future with these!” Basil was fantastic all night with his quick improvisation!

Later on, in the dining room, Basil hands a plate of dinner rolls to Manuel. “Roll on the dinner plate,” he tells him. Manuel looks quite puzzled at first. He is from Barcelona and his English is not so good. He then figures it out and places the plate on the floor. He steps back and looks at the plate. The audience starts a loud drum roll on their tables. Manuel runs and does a somersault on the plate! The audience erupts in cheers and Manuel jumps around in glory! Manuel starts to repeat the process when Basil comes back to stop him. “I meant the bread rolls!” Manuel was fantastic playing the fool all night!

Sybil played the “straight man” perfectly and sharply contrasted the antics of the other two which made the whole performance funnier still. The experience truly did recreate the characters from the show expertly. Even the members of the crowd unfamiliar with the show had a fantastic time. This show is absolutely a must see! Get your tickets now!

Quinn Delaney

Review: The New Colony Presents Even Longer and Farther Away at The Den Theatre (April 29, 2016)

The audience sits at tables around the room, except for two tables in the middle.  These two tables and all the space in the room are used by the actors. It’s an immersive experience that feels like you are eavesdropping on the hiking group’s conversation. We soon learn that Elliot and his friend Roy are hiking the Appalachian Trail. It was Elliot’s father’s final wish that his ashes be scattered on the trail. Roy wants to spend a night at the lodge they have stumbled upon as a break from sleeping on the cold ground in the snow. Elliot dismisses him and acts like a jerk insisting they continue on. Then, Alexis (Elliot’s half-sister) and her boyfriend Jack arrive. Elliot is pissed and accuses them of stalking him. Elliot doesn’t seem to have any redeeming qualities.

The play’s characters don’t meld together very well. Some of them are very serious and make the play dramatic. Others are goofy and make the play a light hearted comedy. It switches back and forth too often. Thus, neither the drama nor the comedy gets very deep. Everything is just surface level. The New Colony had some really excellent productions this year, but this is not one of them. Even Longer and Farther Away runs through May 15th at the Den Theatre.

Quinn Delaney