When we heard The Wild Party was coming to town for its UK premiere, starring Tony Award-winner Frances Ruffelle and directed by Olivier Award-winner Drew McOnie, there was only one way to celebrate with the cast: cocktail making at the swanky establishment Smith & Wollensky, where we learned how to make the delicious ‘The Pearl’.
And led by our trusty guide, our aqueous alchemy produced a delicious end drink befitting of any party, even one so Wild as that which is soon to open The Other Palace, the newest addition to The Really Useful Theatres Group and a home for new musical theatre.
If you’d like to follow the recipe at home, you’ll need some Plymouth Gin, Aperol, Lillet Blanc, and some champagne with which to top it all off.
Set against a backdrop of Manhattan decadence and 1920’s excess, The Wild Party tells the story of Queenie and Burrs, a Vaudeville showgirl and a Vaudeville clown whose relationship is marked by vicious behaviour and recklessness. In an attempt to salvage their toxic union, they decide to throw a party to end all parties.
The guests are a vivid collection of the unruly and the undone: a cocaine-sniffing bisexual playboy; a washed-up boxer; a diva of indeterminate age; a fresh-faced ingénue; and a handsome Valentino who catches Queenie’s roving eye. The jazz and gin soaked party rages to a mounting sense of threat, as artifice and illusion are stripped away. But when midnight debauchery turns into tragedy, the revellers must sober up and face reality. After all, no party lasts forever.
The Wild Party plays at The Other Palace from 13 February-1 April.