La Turista: Café Duende

Theatre, Fringe
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La Turista: Café Duende
Elliot Sheppard

The promise of being transported to hot civil war-era Madrid on a cold London evening, combined with a three-course meal from tapas bar Morito, is a tempting proposition. However, despite the best efforts of nomadic theatre company Hobo, Morito is a difficult venue for an immersive theatrical experience. The cosy bar barely has enough space to sit comfortably, let alone stage a performance.

'La Turista: Café Duende' is split into four digestible parts, interspersed with various courses. In each act, a motley chorus of writers, artists and soldiers use a collage of evocative quotes, photographs, paintings and live music to paint a scene from wartorn '30s Spain. Each section attempts to create an atmospheric sketch of the period, evoking bombs crashing nearby, fear, loss and love, fuelled by a desperate desire to seize the day.

Despite passionate performances, the actors lack the subtlety needed for such an intimate space and the most transportative part of the evening is the meal itself: tempting salty snacks, delicious tapas, a rich flavourful rabbit stew, crusty bread and wine followed by moist cake with a glass of sherry. Instead of merely enhancing the theatrics, the food brings the flavours that the script misses and the meal steals the show.

However, considering the menu with drinks alone would set you back around £38.50, it is well worth a ticket for this enjoyably novel dining experience.