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ponybois review

Four, white shower curtains, two either side of the stage. Behind each a sexy silhouettes gyrates to music. The curtains snap open to reveal four lads (sort of) dressed in high heels, black tights with diamond studded collars and fronts, the appropriately placed sparkles also covering their triangular decency. The Ponybois have arrived and what follows is a pumping, camp cabaret full of burlesque bitchiness as fragile egos battle to upstage and outdance one another in an orgy of fast, fierce, fabulous fun.

Ponybois, an offshoot of the award winning Ponydance, is gender bending, gender blending, comedy dance-theatre at its raunchy best. In their current show, How To Be A Lad(y), four fierce dancers, including an Irish Dance Champion, a Northern Irish Hip Hop Champion and the World Line Dance Champion entertain with unbridled exuberance and infectious enthusiasm.

MC’d by God no less the Ponybois take you on a tour of their favorites songs and films to date, including a rocking rendition of Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend, the incomparable Streisand and the inimitable Frank Stallone. Egos collide during roller disco mayhem, male lap dancers show how to use a chair to best effect and Irish colors are proudly worn in a heart thumping number that bursts forth with a wild, refreshing vitality.

How To Be A Lad(y) is a dynamic labor of love that sparkles with joy, energy and exuberance. Imbued with something of that DIY, punk spirit, it proclaims proudly, “forget art: let’s dance. It’s way more fun.” It would be criminal to dismiss Ponybois as the best worse dance troupe ever. It takes consummate skill to look this bad. When the charade drops at moments, particularly during the high octane, hip-hop routine, a glimpse is afforded into the hard work and dedication behind these seemingly haphazard routines. Equally, it would be criminal to dismiss How To Be A Lad(y) as appealing to a target audience given its raunchy, adult, material. Anyone with even half a pulse could not but be stirred to joy and laughter at the fabulousness on display. All done, of course, in the best possible taste. What would be criminal is if this wild ride doesn’t reach a wider audience. So treat yourself, go see How to Be A Lad(y). You too will be mad about the bois.

Rating: ★★★★★
How to Be A Lad(y) runs at The Smock Alley Theatre until September 15th.
Doors open at 7.00 p.m. Admission is 14 euro.

Chris O’Rourke (examiner.com)

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