I’ve been a long-standing lover of Madame Zingara, having been lured into her World of magic and mystery by a delectable chilli-chocolate steak, made famous in the original restaurant. It’s been years since that magical place burnt down with fans like me having to wait until their city is visited by the travelling tent, once every couple of years. When I heard that the travelling Madame Zingara Theatre of Dreams was on its way back to its spiritual home, Cape Town with the all-new Miracle Tour, I knew that there was no ways I could miss out on the opportunity to catch this dinner theatre experience right in my own backyard.
This time around the Madame Zingara tent has been erected (I can’t even write that without giggling – because I’m actually 5) in the V&A Waterfront, just a stone-throw away from the ocean’s edge. I have the sense that this bit of location is more fitting than all those that have gone before because of the International appeal that comes along with one of Cape Town’s landmarks – it just feels right to have something as amazing as the Madame Zingara tent inside the grounds of our one of our country’s biggest tourist attractions.
From the moment you enter, the allure of an old World travelling tent starts to wash over you, as your senses are overloaded with the bright carnival lights and characters that are all part of the Madame Zingara experience- going to any date of the Miracle Tour is exactly that… an experience. Everyone from the peeps at the front checking your bookings to the waitrons inside stay in character all night. Our waiter insisted that we call him Little Sanchez for the evening, while he served us wearing what can only be described as half a leotard accompanied by a coconut bra (to cover his boobs, I’m not saying that he was accompanied by a guy that was a coconut).
When inside the tent you are immersed into a bonkers gypsy style carnival show carried out by some of the finest performers I’ve ever had the chance of seeing. Think Cirque du Soleil with a rather naughty twist. From the acrobats (which I am almost convinced made everyone a little bit gay/lesbian with their unbelievably sensual performances) to the singers and the host Cathy Specific (the best drag artist around), you’re treated to a show that enthrals you all the way through and I haven’t even mentioned the food yet.
I know that especially as a blogger, I’m supposed to be really good at the whole Tweet Before You Eat thing but to be honest I was only successful once – the food was really too good to leave on the plate while I snapped pictures. The menu is simple yet very sophisticated, not leaving you with huge amounts of choice and to be completely honest I think this is for the better. Madame Zingara is known for signature dishes like the Chilli-Chocolate steak and Salmon – why mess with a good thing?!
I think the most important thing to remember is that when you do go- leave your inhibitions at the door and really let loose. There is an entire Madame Zingara shop inside the tent that allows you to buy props, get your face painted and have your fortune told amongst other things (like selling not one but TWO brands of Poppers). Buy a sailor hat and boa and get involved as it is probably one of the only chances you’re going to get to be a little bit crazy over dinner without getting judged by other patrons and members of staff.
Overall I think that the Madame Zingara Miracle Tour dinner and a show is an experience that every single person needs to try once in their lives. It is like nothing else you’ll ever do while in South Africa (and most of parts of the World) and will impress even the most hardened of critics.
The Miracle Tour will be in the Cape Town V&A Waterfront until about June (so I’ve heard) and bookings are filling up pretty quickly. Make sure you get down there to experience the miracle that is Madame Zingara for yourself.