West End show review: Germán Cornejo Wild Tango at Peacock Theatre 12 – 21 May 2022

Last night I spent a couple of hours with heightened emotions and goosebumps at the world premiere of Wild Tango at Sadler’s Wells’ Peacock Theatre, a recognised world-leading dance organisation and one of my favourite West End venues. That intense sensation was still present at waking up this morning. In this review I will explain why I want to go back to the Peacock Theatre see Wild Tango again before the last night in London on 21 May.

Wild Tango is a heart-wrenching feast for the senses of Argentine culture, featuring electrifying fusion of traditional tango – originally performed by two men -flamenco and contemporary street dance mixed with aerial circus stunts. It explores deep connections, sensuality, the consuming passion of relationships and musical poetry. 

The dancers’ energy kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the show. Two hours flew by so quickly and I would have spent two more hours watching these beautiful dancers swinging in the air dancing tango in a very unusual way. Their outfits by Gerardo Casas and German Cornejo himself were also stunning, made of black leather and corsetry, sparkly at times, colourful and flourecent resembling ‘80s fashion as well as traditional Argentinian costumes and hats.

Photo by Carlos Villamayor

Wild Tango is not a show that aims to educate audiences about the origins of tango, but is more a dive into the feelings that tango evokes. For this reason it is suitable even for the youngest generation who are slowly deserting theatrical performances. The fusion of traditional and contemporary dances in Wild Tango is very appealing to a wide audience above and beyond tango lovers like myself. 

Guitari and vocal lead Luciano Bassi

The live music with the band on the stage at all times including a piano, drums, bandoneon (a concertina instrument used in most Argentinian tango ensembles) and guitar was what made the show so special. Italian – Argentinian guitarist and lead singer Luciano Bassi was alongside the ‘prima ballerina’ Gisela Galeassi (also of Italian origins) the real star of the show. Its velvety voice complemented the artists’ dance routines very nicely. As an Italian, I might be biased but I found these two artists incredibly fascinating. I had the pleasure of also meeting them behind the scenes at the after-show party and they were both humble and lovely. I cannot wait to see the show again now that I know what to expect and enjoy the little details of the coreography. 

I’m here with the gorgeous and super talented dancer and choreographer Gisela Galeassi 

The cast includes several world tango champions, who give explosive performances by mixing tango, flamenco, paso doble, contemporary urban dance, malambo, and even circus elements. This is the first time a large-scale international production about tango is performed mainly by male dancers, shifting the perspective and making the traditional dance form more inclusive. Germán Cornejo is widely renowned over the world as one of the leading tango artists working today. He is Lead Dancer in Tango Fire Company of Buenos Aires which he joined since 2006 and he has been a performer in Milonga since 2013’s premiere directed and choreographed by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. He has also collaborated with various celebrities including Jennifer Lopez. 

Germán is also the Artistic Director and choreographer of the Germán Cornejo’s Dance Company which opened in 2016, and which features shows such as Tango After Dark and Immortal Tango. 

Listing information: Thursday 12 – Saturday 21 May 

Venue: Peacock Theatre, WC2A 2HT 

Tickets: £18 – £65 

Ticket Office: 020 7863 8000 or www.sadlerswells.com 

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