The spectacle is delectable

Picture this: you’ve just taken a sip of a great chardonnay and placed a slice of perfectly cooked duck onto your fork, when suddenly you spot a man on your left somersaulting as he dangles 30 metres in the air. Then, just as you begin to place your drinks order something else catches your eye on the right. A band of leather-clad men dressed as futuristic rockers start banging out a rendition of an ‘80s classic. Where exactly am I talking about? It could only be the one and only Wallmans.

Wallmans isn’t merely a dinner show but a “concept” according to show producer Johan Espeland. Yes, you are served a four-course meal whilst being entertained by some of the best stage and circus performers in Scandinavia, but it’s the whole experience that contributes to Wallmans calling itself “the perfect night out”.

“The perfect night out” may seem like a big call to some, but it’s one that communications manager Casper Engmark will proudly stand by. “Where else can you be seated in a circus building from 1886 with 850 other people, and enjoy a great dinner, a fantastic show and then a nightclub?” said Engmark.

The show features something for everyone.  A modern ballet performance of a take on Alice in Wonderland was followed by ‘Colour by Technicolour’, which brought together a medley of songs from classic black and white films. The 14 strong performers then rocked out a number that really got the house moving: ‘Adult Oriented Rock’. The beat found its way to us and before we knew it we were bopping in our seats to ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ and jiggling to ‘Jump’.

Star performer Ernistine Ruiz told us that “despite doing the same performance night after night I must keep pushing myself to do more inspiring, fun and challenging moves.”  This was evident in Ruiz’s performance as she whisked across the stage … you’d hardly guess she had a sprained ankle!

Ten minutes later and a circus theme took centre stage as artist Kimmo Hietanen wooed and wowed on the tight rope. Amidst the action, we feasted on four wonderful courses. Beginning with nibbles, we moved onto a broccoli soup, and then some of the best duck in town. With help from our attentive waitress, we matched this with a crisp 2009 Piuze Petit Chablis Chardonnay from France.  Dessert featured a crème brûlée, and we ended on a high note with one of their cocktails from the specials menu.  

In between the swanky food and the suspended dancers, I had a moment to ponder the logistics of the night. Keeping 800+ guests happy while organising 150 staff, 14 performers and 30 administration staff is no mean feat. “Timing is everything,” said Engmark. “Although the show may headline, the same energy level is required from the kitchen and the stage.”

While we felt part of something very new age, we were aware that we were part of a tradition that’s been running for over a century. Built in 1886, the Wallmans circus building was run by two circus families for 125 years. In 2004 the building was bought by the Swedish-based company Wallmans who made it into the glitzy place it is now. Sitting in the piano bar, surrounded by black and white photos of elephants, circus performers and lion tamers, we realised the historic nature of the place. Even more so when the over 50s started milling around the memorabilia, nostalgically murmuring: “Oh, I remember that.”

English poet Matthew Arnold once wrote: “The pursuit of perfection is the pursuit of sweetness and light.” In their pursuit of providing guests with the perfect night out, Wallmans delivers a sweetness to the mouth, an increased lightness to your mood, and ignites a spark that sets you up for one heck of a great night! Wallmans is an experience not found anywhere else in Denmark, and one you’ll remember well after the final curtain goes down. To quote Engmark: “Wallmans gives you an experience that lasts just a little bit longer,” and it certainly does.

Wallmans Dinner Show
Cirkusbygningen, Jernbanegade 8, 1609 Cph V;

Performances Thu-Sat 18:30-23:00;

Adults 495-815kr, under-12s from 258kr;

3316 3700;;

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