Jervis Pennington’s new revue, Chef, Rattle and Roll, is cooking up a tasty treat at the Sound Stage in Midrand.

Mortimer Williams (head chef), Shelley Adriaanzen, (assistant chef), the delectable Marisa Bosman whose function is to look gorgeous (and she does a great job of it) and Gil̩ Motshwane Рwho stole the show in many places with her switching from English to the vernacular to the special amusement of those in the audience who could understand Рbring this delicious show to life.

It opens with Chef, Rattle ‘n Roll and moves on through a wide variety of song and dance routines, all while preparing a meal on a gas stove designed for demonstrations, to a deadline set at 105 minutes, including the interval. Some of the songs relate to the ingredients, such as Lemon Tree (not, unfortunately, the “Lemon Tree, very pretty, but the fruit of that poor lemon is impossible to eat” version), Sugar, Sugar, Somewhere over the Rainbow (Rainbow chickens); and Crying (when dicing the onions).

There are lots of little plays on words both in the dialogue and in the songs, some of them slightly naughty. We get Sweets for my Sweet while the dessert is being discussed, Cooking School Dropout for the head chef who is actually The Great Pretender, and Nofinger (think James Bond) when the less than competent head chef slices off his finger while preparing the pasta. Great Balls of Fire accompanies the flambé.

Costuming of the chef, assistant and backing musicians is in chef’s jackets, hats and aprons, cruel as it may have been to Shelley Adriaanzen who has assets which shouldn’t be ever be hidden under such unflattering clothes.

An earlier review by Peter Feldman mentioned some sound glitches at the show he attended, and these have unfortunately not yet been resolved. They give Gilé Motshwane, the person who kept losing her mike, an opportunity for some apparently off-the-cuff humour, but it would have been better if this (and the earlier electronic whine) had not happened.

Shows focusing on food are not unheard of (remember the impressive Play With Your Food at the Tesson a few years ago?) and they certainly appeal to our gut instinct. This one has choreography which is interesting and appropriate, and singing which is a delight. The show is slick and enjoyable.

It is on only until 27 August, so butter up your theatre partner and set out to this supper club (they have a standard carvery with a spectacular dessert buffet) for a night of food and fun.

Moira, the Faerie Godmother

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