Jingle (JACs Entertainment)
Brisbane Powerhouse, Powerhouse Theatre
December 15 – 23
“Jingle” is described as an all ages magic, cirque, singing, dance and comedy Christmas show spectacular for anyone from 1 – 100 to enjoy, and it is not long into its 70-minute show time that it becomes evident that this is indeed true.
Things start strongly with a dynamic soundscape pumping out commanding compositions of this-time-of-year classics as we are taken into the amazing edge-of-your-seat feats of acrobatics with a new take on the Christmas story of “The Nutcracker” courtesy of an expressive contortionist and hand-balancing routine from Soliana. The Powerhouse Theatre offers a perfect platform to showcase all range of circus acts, with its raked seating allowing even those towards the back of the stalls, an impressive view of the scale of their heights, the beauty of their choreography and uniqueness of their execution. And the aerial acts are even more striking because of this, especially when we see an performer not only showcases climb and wrap tricks but roll up, rather than just the usual free-fall dropping down, their silks.
There is no real theme to the show, apart from entertainment. The over a dozen incredibly-talented performers all have impressive, unique skillsets which combine in a potpourri of entertainment, with internationally acclaimed juggler Cody Harrington standing out as a clear crowd favourite as his incredible tricks build upon each other in their brilliance. Clearly, this new Christmas show really is one for all ages with guide, internationally acclaimed comedy host Magician Dom Chambers, engaging with children and adults alike, particularly with his card tricks and sleigh-of-hand magic. There is also some fun audience participation from both children and adults.
Music numbers are appropriately themed and delivered with style by powerhouse vocalist Ellen Reed. Her ‘You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch’ is a teasing testament to her talent, and her late-show ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ is heart-warming, but still melancholic. Familiar in sound, but still very much its own, it is a glorious light-and-shade version that scales to great vocal heights yet also allows for some sit in the essentially quite sad holiday staple.
While, ‘Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let It Snow!’ does not feature in her set list, before things end, it does joyously filter down upon us as the perfect punctuation point on a richly aesthetic experience. Lighting lushes over each number to give it a distinctive feel and costumes contribute much to the often impressive visuals, such as when aerialist Katrina Lilwall, ascends to high above the stage, suspended in the air by her hair as she swings about and performers acrobatic poses, while winged in angel attire. It is a stunning, standout moment that encapsulates the sumptuousness of the combined artistry of the show.
Bigger and better than its Brisbane Festival “Cirque O L I O” work, “Jingle” is like a mini Cirque du Soleil show for the whole family. Like a chocolate box of only the best assortments, it gives us an array of Australian-based circus, song and dance (from impressive tap to ballet numbers and even twin dancing reindeers) in a magical festive holiday treat. And its diverse, creative entertainment will surely stimulate the senses and entertain the passions of audiences of all sorts during its extended holiday run.