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Le Cochon Entier

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
A crackling good show. A pig-butcher’s paean. “Chocolat” for charcutiers. These and other pork-related locutions nuzzled into my consciousness as I prepared to watch this show. But they don’t help, even if one of the performers does look a lot like a young Juliette Binoche.

This hypnotic and riveting show takes no prisoners. “Marmite” is a bland and universally appealing foodstuff in comparison. Four performers enter to an insistent sampled drumbeat and perform warped and twisted synchronised manoeuvres involving blood and a lot of wiping.

Two of them then split off to play guitar and drums – the music reminds you of nothing so much as the more extreme Canterbury sound of the late 60s and early 70s; Henry Cow and their ilk. The two left don bizarre costumes and become an elderly couple increasingly crazed by their first encounter with that wicked controlled substance – PORK!

There’s a lot more to it and you’ll have to come and find out for yourself. Initially, it seizes your attention, then it starts to irritate you (the badly recorded, interminable voice-over doesn’t help). Finally, it grasps you somewhere visceral and won’t let go. My find of the Fringe so far.

- Craig Singer


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