Boy Toy at the Above The Stag Theatre: Press night review by Stephen Vowles  

With original music by Leo Delibes and re-imagined by Aaron Clingham, William Spencer who conceived, directed and choreographed Boy Toy certainly proved that he has a fabulous and very creative imagination. 

Taking the story of Coppélia – that of a mechanical doll who is so lifelike she can convince people she is alive – and replacing it with a male mannequin and dressing him up as a stud, a gay man complete with fitted black leather shorts that emphasise his crotch area, wearing a harness and a tight, form hugging T shirt. The doll is controlled and manipulated by dirty sex shop owner Dr C played with gusto by Collum Tempest. 

The three other dancers – Matthew Brazier as Maximilian, Lance Collins as Freddie and Saul Kilcullen-Jarvis as Simon – all show great competence, skill and technique. Supple and nimble and with very muscular controlled steps, with leaps and dance moves that totally inhabit the stage.

This is a 60 minute dance sequence that tells a bawdy, slightly sleazy, sinfully naughty and playful story of gay attraction and rejection; that to break up is to make up; that there is fun in the chase, the wooing and also the final capture. There are also great comedy moments. The dance of the huge blue dildos being a particular highlight. 

The staging of the show is extremely impressive with four neon lit red doors echoing the more salubrious and salacious aspects of Soho; very clever indeed. This is also a dance piece that is extremely camp, with a burlesque, French farce feel that is totally captivating. The grace and dexterity of the four performers is immaculate and proves without a doubt the elegance of dance. A sizzling homoerotic jazz ballet presented with real panache.


Pictures by PGB studios

Boy Toy runs to Sunday 21st July at Above the Stag Studio, 72 Albert Embankment, Vauxhall, London SE1 7TP. Tickets:  

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