REVIEW: The Faustus Project (The Basement)

May 31, 2017
[Hell is Other People] Everybody knows the story of Faust. Smart guy wants to gain more power, conjures the devil, sells his soul and takes too long to understand his folly. It’s been replayed endlessly, from the original Christopher Marlowe play, through The Devil and Daniel Webster, Frankenstein, and the Al Pacino scream-athon The Devil’s Advocate. It’s a story that […]

REVIEW: Ashton Brown: Anxious to Meet You (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 22, 2017
[Cracking Up] Over the last couple of years, I have seen Ashton Brown perform twice as part of double bills. I can safely say that this is the best I’ve ever seen him. A combination of self-flaggelating autobiography and stand up, Anxious to meet you sees Brown tackle his biggest, most complex subject: himself. Over the course of an hour he […]

REVIEW: Bridget Davies and Tom Sainsbury: At the Drop of a Mic (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 4, 2017
[Misery Loves Company] Double comedy acts are a lot like movie anthologies — there’s usually a variation in quality, with one standout segment surrounded by dreck. Thankfully, that is not the case here. Sharing small town origins, Bridget Davies and Tom Sainsbury have crafted tight 30 minute sets that combine elements from their childhoods with their own individual concerns and […]

REVIEW: Brynley Stent: Escape from Gloriavale (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 3, 2017
[Running in Place] Following up her roles as the naïve bride in Camping and the naïve actress in The Opening Night Before Christmas, actress Brynley Stent completes a hat trick with her new solo show Escape from Gloriavale, in which she plays a naïve member of the secretive religious cult.After reading a copy of Women’s Weekly, Providence Gratitude (Stent) becomes possessed by a desire to […]

REVIEW: Anzac Eve (Armstrong Creative)

April 1, 2017
[Turkish Delight] Written by Dave Armstrong, Anzac Cove is a dramedy that puts our mutual emphasis on Anzac Day under the microscope. Four young people, two Kiwis and two Aussies, arrive at Anzac Cove for the annual commemorations. Maia (Trae Te Wiki) and Lizzie (Ruby Hansen) are longtime friends; Ben (Barnaby Olson) and Phil (Hayden Frost) used to go to […]

REVIEW: Say Something Nice (Auckland Fringe)

March 8, 2017
[It’s Something] A solo show from Sam Brooks, Say Something Nice is an attempt to strike out from the pack with something different and new. The show looks and feels like a self-help seminar. You walk into a large room filled with tables – each table is big enough for two people. On each table are pads and pens. In […]

REVIEW: Tomás Ford’s Chase! (Auckland Fringe)

March 1, 2017
[Speed on Stage] A fast-moving blend of singing, ranting and waterboarding, Tomás Ford’s Chase! is like a fever dream during a drive-in movie. Framed in front of two large screens, secret agent Tomás Ford (Tomás Ford) regales the audience with the story of his chase around the globe to locate the woman he loves. Behind our psychopathic anti-hero, black and […]

REVIEW: Infectious (Auckland Fringe)

February 25, 2017
[Worth Catching] A man (played by Daryl Wrightson) has unprotected sex with a work colleague. Unbeknownst to him, he has contracted four STDS: Gonorrhea (Zak Enayat), Syphilis (Rebekah Head), Chlamydia (Ash Ogden) and HIV (Tyler Warwick). These STDs are portrayed as a quartet of horny teens on a camping trip. Before they can get comfortable in their new environment, a […]

REVIEW: Loud & Queer (Auckland Pride)

February 16, 2017
[Queer Rock] Loud & Queer is unapologetic agitprop. It feels like a blast of cold water that rails against the ways in which queer experience and identities have been homogenised  and commercialised for the masses. A mix of comedy, skits and poetry, the show is messy, angry and comes out punching. Last year, I reviewed The Hook-Up Boys, a pretty funny show about […]

REVIEW: Impostar (Auckland Pride)

February 15, 2017
[Over the Rainbow and Around the Bend] A show for anyone who grew up watching Wizard of Oz and Sound of Music till the VHS tapes wore out, Impostar: Who does he think he is? is a funny, heart-warming showcase for the extremely talented singer-impressionist Jason Chasland. A mix of cabaret and autobiographical monologue, Impostar is a blast from start […]
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