Le Salon | Peeping TomPhoto - Fred Debrock

Peeping Tom
(founded in 2002 by Gabriela Carrizo and Franck Chartier) are a Belgium-based company at the forefront of Europe’s physical theatre scene. Their work is a fusion of dance and music and theatre, combining the elements to tell stories which peep behind the facade – stories of misfortune and darkness which reveal the funny beauty of life.

Le Salon is a story of a family in decline. In an old apartment lounge room, cluttered with memories, four generations and their stories are interwoven and entangled, creating a picture of a family in freefall.

This is a very dark piece, but the audience laughed loudly. In this, the success of Peeping Tom can be found. Peeping Tom are a clever, perceptive ensemble with a delightfully dark and honest sense of humour.

The choreography was at once awe-inspiring for its pushing of physical limits, cute, and witty, but always added to and intensified the story, telling us more than words ever could. There was a lip-locked (literally) dance of love between the young couple (Carrizo and Chartier), a sunglasses-wearing super-mum (Carrizo) stuck in a tai-chi cycle, a grandfather (Simon Versnel) joyfully remembering a ballet dance from his youth. There were six-packs (or perhaps, twenty-four packs is more accurate) and incredible displays of strength and controlled chaos from Chartier and Samuel Lefeuvre. And there was a very odd sequence in which the grandfather shunned his cabaret-singing wife (Eurudike de Beul) before joyfully proceeding to cut his pubic hair as he continued her song.

Mezzo-soprano, Beul, who sung live throughout the performance, intensified the ever-present lingering atmosphere of melancholy with songs of yearning and desire. Beul was fearless in the use of her voice, singing with power and fragility.

Perhaps my description of Beul’s voice is a contradiction. Peeping Tom, however, seems to thrive on this idea of opposition, connecting with its audience by finding the light and shade of darkness.

Peeping Tom
Le Salon
Concept & Dancers - Gabriela Carrizo, Franck Chartier, Samuel Lefeuvre & Simon Versnel

Venue: the Arts Centre, Playhouse
Dates: Thu 22 – Sat 24 Oct at 8pm
Matinee: Sat 24 Oct at 2pm
Duration: 1hr 20min no interval
Bookings: www.melbournefestival.com.au
Visit: www.fransbrood.com

Most read reviews

Lighten Up | Tom Gleeson

Master of the deadpan, harsh host of Hard Quiz, and heartless interrogator on Hard Chat, making audiences squirm as much as his victims – Tom Gleeson uses blunt-force trauma as his comedy schtick.

Scandal! A Reflection on Essendon’s Doping Saga: The Musical? | Kit Richards

It doesn’t matter how much you know or care about the legality of the Essendon Football Club supplements program in 2013 – it won’t stop you enjoying this original and entertaining saga, because Kit Richards has a talent for making otherwise dull stories fun and interesting. And for writing damn good songs.

Two Gents | That's Classic! Entertainment

Swapping 16th Century Verona for 1930s Hollywood, and a lengthy title for the short and snappy “Two Gents”, the text takes on new meaning in the slick, glamorous world of studio system stars and overbearing producers.

Glengarry Glen Ross | New Theatre

Real estate is just dirt, when you boil it right down, and Mamet’s pedlars of property sure are dirty.

Sexual Misconduct of the Middle Classes | Melbourne Theatre Company

This play is that guest at your dinner party who, with one potent observation, generates such discomfort that all assembled clamber for composure after the resonating truth has been spoken.

Most read news

Vale Taryn Fiebig

Multi award-winning Australian music theatre and opera star Taryn Fiebig, who made Prince Charles cry with her artistry, passed away in Sydney last night from ovarian cancer, aged 49.