Madame Señorita knows how to make an entrance. In the already quite spooky and gothic Dragonfly, she announces her presence with a blood-curdling scream from the back of the room. She then processes up to the stage in veil and gown, a disturbing clown in widow’s weeds, screams again, then apologises in a thick Iberian accent. This combination of fear and fun, sexiness and madness makes this evening a curious but captivating experience.
The Expector is one of those shows you just roll with, and don’t try to think about too much. Madame Señorita, the alter-ego of performer Paula Valluerca, doesn’t say a lot. She explains nothing. She sings along to creepy music. Sometimes she stops still and waits. But she is always one step ahead of you, and something odd is about to happen.
For example, once the wailing widow has finished her business, and Madame Señorita is back to her “normal” self, she begins perusing men in the audience, hopefully asking, “¿Eres tú?” There’s no right answer to this question, and some poor unfortunate* ultimately gets dragged on stage to become Madame Señorita’s suitor. He’s made to woo her, but whatever he does isn’t right, and in a fit of hispanic high dudgeon, Señorita makes him do it again, stranger and funnier. By the end, they might be engaged, she might be pregnant – who knows? There’s basically been a lot of face pulling, dancing, and histrionics.
Once she’s ditched her man, Señorita dons wig and marigolds for a bizarrely erotic glass-washing scene, and then comes over all Marilyn in Happy Birthday, Mr President mode for a finale which involves her ordering coloured helicopters for everyone. There may have been some relationship cycle thread holding all of this together, it may have been a twisted exploration of female empowerment, or it might all have been some strange Spanish fever dream. You’d definitely come back for more of it.
* It was The Wee Review