Slava's Snowshow, Old Vic, London SE1 (0171-928 7616)

Anyone that was dragged kicking and screaming to some scraggy circus as a child will probably have built up a lifelong antipathy to the word "clown". Watching scrappy slapstick in an overgrown tent was never my idea of a good time. You will, therefore, be surprised to learn that I positively insist you see the Russian clown who has taken London by storm. I went to see him a year ago in a state of exceeding bad grace, determined to be proved right in my prejudice. To my astonishment, I found myself thawing and by the second half I was completely won over. He's aided and abetted at most performances by the completely captivating Angela de Castro, a tremendous Brazilian performer who is the last word in poignancy. The stunning final minutes of this uncategorisable show will leave you wide-eyed and gasping. There simply is nothing like it.