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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, July 3, 2015 - Volume 43 Issue 27
The Return of Chaos at Teatro ZinZanni
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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The Return of Chaos at Teatro ZinZanni

by Eric Andrews-Katz - SGN A&E Writer

THE RETURN OF CHAOS
TEATRO ZINZANNI
Now playing


The excitement of being under 'The Big Tent' is a delight known to millions of people. Much fewer in number are the people that get to enjoy the goings-on under the big tent of Teatro ZinZanni. The magical combination of circus, acrobatics, and dinner has become a Seattle institution of magical delight and pure entertainment.

The story may be simplistic, but it's always fun. This time it is 'The Return of Chaos.' The 'Superheroes of Seattle' (who all have common alter egos working at landmarks in the city) gather in a final effort to fight chaos, and keep gloom and doom from the city. Gloom and Doom are helpers to Chaos who wants to take over. It is a battle for the beer and to keep Seattle safe!

As one can expect from any circus-like performance, there is more than just storytelling. The performances are filled with aerial acrobatics, singers and jugglers. Their timing is impeccable whether they are scaling poles, balancing on one another, or juggling several items at a time.

Two of the jugglers are Mickael Bajazet and Joel Salom. These men use their exquisite and precise timing to keep several balls or juggling pins in the air. As a team they interact with one another, throwing and catching to each other with such incredible speed that it is difficult to keep the blurring whirl of pins in sight. Mr. Salom goes to the extreme of unbuttoning his jacket and letting his pants fall, all the while not ever stopping the incredible speed of his juggling. Then, to take matters to the next level, he gets dressed again - without using his hands - still juggling, and without any assistance except for an audience member to reach through the thrown objects and button his coat. It is truly an amazing thing to see.

Vita Radionova returns to Teatro Zinzanni with great skill and dexterity. Ms. Radionova uses her slim body like a machine to consistently spin more than a dozen hoola-hoops at once. As the colorfully lit hoops are twirling off each wrist, her torso, and her waist, Ms. Radionova has the gall to stand on one foot and successfully elicit pure astonishment from the audience.

The 'Duo Madrona' and Domitil Aillot are the aerial acrobats of this Teatro ZinZanni performance. Both have appeared before and consistently prove why their acts under the tent have become legendary. The duo consists of Ben Wendel and Rachel Nehmer. This is their eighth performance at Teatro. The team works with a hanging trapeze doing aerial acrobatics. They work off and with one another so well they move like a well-oiled machine producing wonder as each of them scales up the other's body in turn. Their bodies interlock above the ground, hanging above the audience. Domitil's work is solo. Leaping onto the pole he scales up as easily as climbing an escalator. There are times where he is horizontally hanging off the pole as if a flag. It is truly astounding to see the ways he manipulates his body.

The singer for the night is Anki Albertsson who plays the superheroine, Sparkle Danger. Sporting a tight white outfit, she has lights sparkling in her huge white hair. Starting off the night she sings 'We Need A Hero,' not only belting out the song but also providing an anthem for the evening. Her voice is strong, clear and easily understood, reaching every corner under the tent.

Then, of course, as with any other circus, there are clowns. The comedians here are The Collins Brothers (playing Gloom and Doom). Using slapstick comedy they are minions to Chaos and are out to foil the Superheros of Seattle. Along with them is Kevin Hart, another familiar member of the troupe providing part hostess, part villainess and 100% fun to the audience. Joe de Paul returns to Teatro as Captain Canada. His talent is comedy and he does it well. Using props or improvisation, there is a reason all of these people have returned to Teatro ZinZanni for the new show; they all do their jobs of entertaining us very well.

The executive chef Erik Carlson designed the menu for this production. The appetizer consisted of polenta presented in two ways, with tiny pyramids of sun-dried tomato puree on top. The next course was the 'beanie martini,' which was Mr. Carlson's own version of a three-bean salad served in a martini glass. The actual salad for the evening was a blue-cheese wedge salad that quickly followed. The main course choices were the usual grilled salmon, braised beef ribs, or, of course, the vegetarian option. (Not being a fan of ribs, I opted to pay a very small fee and have a fillet substituted instead. I was not disappointed). If you like alcohol with dinner, consider trying one of the many signature cocktails, or the wine flight - a variety of wines expertly chosen to enhance each course.

Teatro ZinZanni is a fun way to celebrate anything. Anniversaries, birthdays or just another night out, the evening is full of laughter, good food, and high entertainment. Sharing with its sister-company in San Francisco, the show rotates and is changed every three months or so to help keep everything fresh and exciting.

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GREASE - An interview with Sarah Rose Davis
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Wizzer Pizzer: Getting Over the Rainbow

An interview with Amy Wheeler

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What's hot for July stage openings
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WICKED - An interview with Michael DeVries
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Verdi's Don Carlos in German
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Can excellent soloists save the show?
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Georgia Ragsdale's mostly-comic memoir, Follow You Everywhere, was the hit of the weekend
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The Return of Chaos at Teatro ZinZanni
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LETTER TO THE EDITOR
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Mike still has plenty of magic
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Bawdy Overnight a promiscuously adventurous affair
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Energetic Dope overflowing in youthful vitality
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Beautiful, movingly intimate Marnie an animated masterpiece
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