Briefs: Close Encounters

Briefs: Close Encounters
Christmas at Leicester Square
November 9th 2018 – January 3rd 2019

by Jenna Johnston

The Australian ‘boylesque’ group Briefs have returned to London to dazzle and thrust their way into our Christmas spirit. The log cabins, towering Christmas trees, the Spiegeltent circus venue decked in sprawling fairy lights in Christmas at Leicester Square promise magic from your arrival and there’s no disappointment on this sparkling expectation, there’s even a ‘bunny-rabbit’ routine.

As the lights go down, Barry White croons to the opening of a night of non-stop glitter, cabaret, dancing and acrobatics. The performers sass, strut and cartwheel across stage and the atmosphere is as ravishing as they are. The costumes, music and set are extravagant and thrilling and underneath the sequins (not that you filthy animal!) the skill is just astounding. In all the fabulous glory of the performance, the talent, outstanding choreography and finesse of the troupe is mind blowing: from the on-stage costume changes through to the aerial acrobatic routine, the night is packed with unexpected melodrama and delight.

Each song brings on a new theme from high-vis jackets to nipple tassels, Kate Bush to Nicky Minaj, odes to Flashdance and Dirty Dancing and even a ‘science experiment’. And this disco spectacular isn’t confined to the stage, the sexy charm and brutal tongue of the ringmaster Fez Fa’anana infuses the audience as the dancers whirl through the aisles. This is a fabulous escape from the realities of a wintry night in London into a dazzling extravaganza of faux fur, back flips and twerking. This isn’t just another dance show, it’s a comedy, burlesque, acrobatic, dance-show spectacular of eccentric flamboyance, more dazzling than the lights on Oxford Street, and what it lacks in clothing it makes up for in sequins and rippling muscles.


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