Where is the fear if you know what to expect? Where is the delight if the element of surprise is removed?
To divulge too much detail would be a crime against the creativity of Fear and Delight, regardless of whether you have chosen The Complete Experience or the show only.
With a monochromatic theme, The Complete Experience asks guests to meet in the Garden of Unearthly Delights only to segregate them with masks of black or white. Deliciously tender Beef Jerky is served over a skull with an ant mayonnaise, heralding a challenging menu of unique offerings that you may prefer to eat before you learn what delicacies you’ve swallowed.
Oysters in edible sand, frog spawn, roasted mealworms & fried grasshoppers are all part of the various entrees as you’re lead around Rymill Park on a journey of culinary discovery. The internationally renowned Dutch Food Slingers are chefs beyond compare with a sense of theatricality that is evident in their food choices and presentations.
Separated from loved ones into three random groups, the wandering crowds are almost forced to make friends with strangers through the inevitable need to comment on what has passed and what is to come. Breaking down that barrier of talking to strangers is but one more fear that can turn to delight in this well-planned night of mystery and manipulation.
Main course is served seated along the edge of the enormous stage, providing prime viewing for the show itself after ticket holders for the show-only join us in the bleachers behind after dessert has being served. Before then however, the main course comes fast and flavoursome, with the vegetarian options equally as mouth-watering as the meat dishes.
On stage, a tricycle is ridden, delivering wines, and the quantity of food is only surpassed by the quality. There was more than enough to conquer even my ample circumference, with dishes including soup, chicken, octopus and…was that really koala brains for dessert?
Fear & Delight The Show is an hour long song and dance entertainment with several superb acrobatic acts to thrill. The sexy cast of nine performers flaunt their talents and physiques with comedy, quirkiness and comradery, all to the wonderful music and songs by The Correspondents. If there is one complaint, it would be the lack of connection between the show and what has come before it in The Complete Experience. They are two very separate experiences rather than offering a single, blended evening.
For all those attending the show on either ticket, The Devils Playground welcomes all to dance the night away afterwards, ending a deliciously provocative night of culinary adventure and creative curiosity.
Reviewed by Rod Lewis
Rating out of 5: 3
Venue: Meet at the Garden of Unearthly Delights, Rundle Park, Adelaide
Season: 13 February – 15 March 2015
Duration: 3 hours
Tickets: $150 All tickets (or $54-$58 for the show only)
Bookings: Book through FringeTix online or at a FringeTix box office (booking fees apply)