Teatro ZinZanni: Psychedelic Cabaret + Steak


Longtime purveyors of quirky vaudeville, Teatro ZinZanni lures veterans from Cirque du Soleil and Moulin Rouge to create an intimate circus with aerialists in lingerie, tap dancing waiters, orgasmic cherries, tightrope-walking bears, and tasty soup.

Walk into the 1910 European cabaret tent and marvel at the polished wood and beveled glass - at least until you sit down at your table and get entirely distracted by the Cowgirl Creamery cheese, green olives, and spiced almonds waiting for you. (Though, admittedly, your devotion to dairy might be less acute than mine.) Trailed by four more courses throughout the evening - including the much lauded dessert with corrupting cherries - food manages to be an integral part of the show while cleverly eluding the trap of standard dinner theater.
Teatro ZinZanni's latest incarnation is a swirl of color and motion and personality - and personality doesn't come any more colorful than Kevin Kent and his genius for comic improv. Serving as ringmaster, Kent plays cunning-spy-turned-obsessive-chef, carrying the show along with him as he polishes the bald heads of audience members, crawls underneath tables in search of his next victim, and teaches the subtle art of seduction while decked out in Marie Antoinette On Acid garb.

Yes, there is audience participation and yes, you might end up wearing that Marie Antoinette dress.

And you'll love every minute of it - especially the moment when you get to sit back down (minus the dress), eat your steak, and watch svelte women climb poles and silks to spin from the ceiling.

Through March 6. Pier 29, The Embarcadero at Battery Street. Tickets are $117-145 at 415-438-2668 and www.zinzanni.org.

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