Midnight Tango

Starring and choreographed by Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace

Aldwych Theatre, London

From 20 January 2012 to 31 March 2012

Review by Joanna Burden

Midnight Tango takes you to the suburbs of Buenos Aires and a steamy little bar where the music plays, the wine flows and the dancing never stops. Strictly Come Dancing stars Vincent Simone’s and Flavia Cacace’s reputations proceed them, and Midnight Tango makes it crystal clear that they are very deserved.

The Strictly stars are joined by ten world-class tango dancers in a fiesta of love, envy and ultimately, passion. The Argentine tango full of kicks, flicks and twists is well known for its drama and its tantalising way of beguiling the audience. A simple storyline of hero and villain fighting for the beautiful girl makes for no hidden complexities (apart from choreographically) and so the ‘good old-fashioned dancing’ is highlighted.

Vincent and Flavia excel on stage, finally being able to enjoy demonstrating their true capabilities as dancers. The magnetism between them is just as exciting as their intricate footwork. The highlight of the show is the stars’ duet, with their exquisite choreography. The shapes created and wonderfully smooth transitions all executed at such speed give the illusion that the couple can almost fly.

The group dances are seductive, sensuous, spirited and speedy, yet faultless. The cast create a fun party atmosphere, making their performances look effortless. Elaborate lifts, tricks and good use of props all contribute to the excitement. The colours of the costumes dazzle as the dancers twist and turn. The performance as a whole is bright, colourful and compelling.

Midnight Tango would not be complete without the adorable characters of Rosa and El Gato (Tricia Deighton and Giraldo Diomar). The elderly Argentinean couple, whose love for each other is at first hidden behind their constant bickering, create warmth, humour and great entertainment.

The music is the essence of Midnight Tango and having the musicians on stage posing as the bar’s band unifies the music and dance rightly as one. The music is rhythmically strong and beautifully led by the skilled violinist Ros Stephen. The live singer Miguel Angel plays a loveable character and is a talented individual, his singing sets the tone perfectly.

Midnight Tango showcases what Flavia and Vincent do best: tango. It is refreshing to watch a show that has not been overwhelmed by glitz—and is simply about the music, dance and passion. Warning: You will be dancing out of the theatre.