Monday, 5 December 2016

"The Super Awesome Happy Fun-Time Trick Performance".
Nottingham New Theatre.
I must say that the variety of shows performed at the New Theatre this season is vast, and this performance shows just another branch of theatre.
This show, written by Ben Webber, is staple Edinburgh Fringe comedy. It's border slapstick comedy that is in the moment, in your face comedy, blended with very simple comedy. Now note that the most popular word there is "comedy". It is funny. Often childish, but funny all the same.
I am probably one of the eldest of the audience members, and I don't have a lot in common with the students in the audience. I'm a lot older, probably not as intelligent, and the other audience members are a lot better looking, well most of them. Any way, I digress, because there's one definitive thing that pulls us all together. We all laughed at the same things. Comedy unites age and gender and this comedy show is one that will appeal to a wider audience.
Directed by Jamie Watt, at first view there would seem to be no direction but the timing of this is very cleverly done. Produced by Maddy Straussmaking up another excellent technical team with lighting design by Joanne Blunt, shadow director Danny Wiser. No mention of sound designer but loved the intro and outro music of Bruno Mars "24 K Magic" and Pharrell's "Happy", both very apt pieces of music because that's what you felt like afterwards, magic and happy.
It would seem that there was confusion over the rehearsal and performance times when the cast turned up to perform but this was the aim of the play. When Louis (Louis Djalili) turns up late it throws the "performance" into panic mode and it's up to the remaining cast members, Michaela Green, George Waring, Charlotte KirkmanKate O'Gorman and Natalia Gonzalez to entertain us, the audience. they fight, quite literally, to be the M.C.and tell jokes, relate monologues and become spitefully cruel to each other, turning on each other physically and verbally.
The physicality and verbal abuse is funny, in an often crude way, but don't we all find someone else's weaknesses being highlighted funny?
There's audience participation, nothing embarrassing, which again is part of the humour of the show and is really well executed in a very natural way.
Then is an instance, and in a slightly darker sense of humour twist, the whole cast turned on the audience, berating them and making them the butt and target of their scorn culmination in the cast walking out. Well not really because that;s how the show is drawn to a close.
All six actors, some I've seen before, and well aware of their comedic abilities, kept the impetus flowing and while there may have not been massive belly laughs, there was no shortage of chuckles and giggles, some albeit nervous at times.
All actors are thoroughly engaging with their different and diverse, quirky character personalities. But you do feel a bit for George who at the end really does everything, quite literally, thrown at him by the cast, and comes up smiling.
It's a short piece of Fringe theatre, lasting less than an hour, but packs in some wonderful comedy snapshots of the characters. From a yoghurt fanatic to the mystery of the cannibal goldfish, this performance is fresh, scatty, as well as catty, but at its' core, it's funny and naturally performed that way.

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