Cupid's Revenge ★★★★★ The Place | October 14 - 16, 2021


Cupid's Revenge, performed by New Art Club, is a joyous, life-enhancing burst of joie de vivre. Tom Roden and Pete Shenton are two extremely accomplished dancers and actors who bring us an hour of fleet-footed dynamism whilst rattling off seemingly random words and phrases at breakneck speed. Love in all its blazing diversity is here as we come to realise the endless lists of words are all connected to our interpretation of love in the twenty-first century. There is humour aplenty balanced with heartfelt emotion which never becomes mawkish. Everyone is able to relate to some parts of the story as we move through meeting and parting, loving and losing, fighting and reconciling. The show is superbly paced with occasional knowing winks at the audience – Shenton's new haircut comes in for a ribbing. Having worked together for about twenty years, Roden and Shenton's tightly synchronised movement comes from a wonderfully close rapport fused with excellent dance technique. Will Holt's simple, but effective, set gives us a big, pink Cupid's heart which has crash-landed into a green sward. New Art Club has been described as “physical comedy with brains.” It is difficult to pinpoint exactly why this show is so successful; perhaps like love itself, it's best simply to relax and enjoy it when Venus' capricious child shoots his arrows so randomly into the air. Cupid's Revenge turns out to be a fascinating and enjoyable piece of dance fused with comedy that is precisely what great entertainment should be.

Rated: ★★★★★

Reviewed by D.S.J.
Photo by Claire Haigh.

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