BWW Review: Teatro ZinZanni's Exuberant WELCOME TO WONDERLAND

Welcome to Wonderland
Kevin Kent in Welcome to Wonderland
at Teatro ZinZanni.
Photo credit: Michael Doucett

I don't think I've ever seen a bad Teatro ZinZanni show. I mean I really don't think there could be one unless they inexplicably decided to sit on the stage and blankly stare at the audience for three hours while serving us large plates of runny eggs and sour milk. Teatro ZinZanni shows are always a good bet for an evening of bliss and their current offering, "Welcome to Wonderland" is no exception.

As you walk in you'll see the Spiegeltent decked out with flowers, playing cards and a large pocket watch. We're in Wonderland and the Jack Rabbit (Joel Salom) is determined to get us started on time or else we may all fall victim to the Red Queen (Lady Rizo) and her two guards (Alya and Gael) who have a penchant for cutting off heads. But not is all in the Queen's control as her chef the Mad Platter (Kevin Kent) is part of the Red Queen Resistance and is more than a match for the murderous Queen. So when a couple on a date (Duo Madrona) show up late, this puts the Queen on edge and it may be just the opening the Platter needs to start his revolution.

I just don't think it's possible to not have a great time at a ZinZanni show. For example with the current offering we have not one, not two, but three aerial acts. Everyone's local favorites, Duo Madrona are of course on hand with their death defying routine that, as always, shows tons of palpable chemistry between the two. Not so much athletic exhibition and more passionate dance but then they are a real life couple so what do you expect? Then there was Lea Hinz who slinked around the room all night selling concoctions and smoking on her hookah. Oh and there was also a stunning aerial hoop routine which blew us away. And last but not least we had the stunningly buff duo of Alya and Gael who not only wowed with a riveting dual balancing act but also managed solo wonders that while impossible they made look effortless. And special kudos to Alya for one of the most beautiful aerial rope routines I've seen.

Welcome to Wonderland
Alevtyna (Alya) Titarenko and Gael Ouisse in
Welcome to Wonderland at Teatro ZinZanni.
Photo credit: Alan Alabastro

If that's not enough for you then we switch over to the more comedic side of the show. Salom as usual slayed with his quick wit and even quicker juggling hands. But it was the repeated back and forth of power between the two would be queens of the land, Kent and Rizo that made the evening an utter delight. Kent has repeatedly demonstrated his gift for hilarious character creations both in and out of drag and no one works a crowd like him. And Lady Rizo was the epitome of power whether owning the stage or belting out some fantastic songs.

Tie all of this together with a meal that's a course after course experience in "Oh my God!" and you can see why I say the ZinZanni shows are always winners. And so with my three letter rating system I give Teatro ZinZanni's "Welcome to Wonderland" an ecstatic YAY. I think if I ever saw a bad ZinZanni show that would be a sign of the apocalypse.

"Welcome to Wonderland" performs at Teatro ZinZanni through February 26th, 2017. For tickets or information contact the Teatro ZinZanni box office at 206-802-0015 or visit them online at

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From This Author Jay Irwin

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