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Arts Reviews

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 2:56pm

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The Comedy Zone brings together five of Australia’s rising stand-up stars for an hour of quality humour. Not only are you scoring five tickets for the price of one, expect to see for the most part a funny and diverse array of stand-up styles, unusual topics and naturally the occasional dirty joke.
 
Like with all stand-up shows, the front row remained empty...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 2:03pm

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Whenever you see a play, there are actually three plays: the one on the page, the one on the stage, and the one in your head based on your own experience with the subject matter. What makes Swipe Left For Love so compelling - and has scored it some rave reviews - is that the writing is relatable enough and the performances varied enough that you'll find a way to personally...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 12:42pm

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On paper this is a weird concept. A widely successful stand-up comedian slash Fox FM presenter and popular indie artist Gossling together on stage. In reality, it was a rare treat. One of the great things about the Melbourne Comedy Festival is that in addition to the brilliant range of acts performing traditional stand up you also get shows like this where people aren’t...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 12:38pm

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2016 was a huge year for the loveable Venezuelan; with the launch of his ABC sitcom Lost in Pronunciation and a stand up special called Chorizo Sizzle. With these recent successes, Aristeguieta had more pressure to deliver during his Comedy Festival run than he’d ever faced before. Not that you’d have known it however. Juithy is 60 minutes of savvy and smart stand up that...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 12:30pm

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Stepping into perhaps the smallest venue of the entire Melbourne International Comedy Festival, it wasn’t long until a sense of wonder spread across the audience as we waited for Sam Taunton. A rising star in the local Melbourne scene, the young Channel V presenter has already snatched up a spot as a Triple J RAW Comedy finalist (2015) and continues to impress with his...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 12:28pm

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At the height of his career as an entertainer, stand-up comedian and host of Whose Line Is It Anyway? Australia, Tommy Little has officially made his mark on The Forum Theatre. In his new show Good Talk, the local act demonstrates why he is fast becoming the on-stage storyteller of his generation.
 
Sharing personal anecdotes from various areas of his day-to-...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 10:56am

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Taking your seat at a Joel Creasey show is just like heading out for drinks with your most scandalous friend. With no doubt in your mind that your discussion will be one saturated with salacious gossip, sexual encounters and the occasional shocking confession, you prepare yourself for what’s to come – all smiles round. Although Poser was my third instalment of the Joel...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 10:33am

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Taking the stage at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for the second year now, Mae Martin’s Friday night show played out like a preview performance for all those that attended. If the Canadian-born, UK-based comic’s second show of the season is anything to go off, the rest of the month will be filled with her unbeatable charisma and quirky sense of humour....

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 10:28am

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In his latest comedy instalment, Tom Ballard explores the modern day, age-old question of what exactly being ‘political correct’ means and people taking it too far – or not far enough. Using comedy as a prime example of a social norm that seems to defy the ever-growing rules of such a controversial issue, the adored Australian act shared his thoughts about a truly...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 10:19am

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The quirkiest of comedians, James Acastar has brought a trilogy of his best-loved shows back to Melbourne. Set to share Recognise (2014), Represent (2015) and Reset (2016) while he is in Melbourne, audiences will be presented with one of the three sets depending on which night they choose to get down to the Melbourne Town Hall.
 
Last Wednesday, the UK-based...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 10:02am

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Are you ready to take charge of your life? Tired of being held back? Do you want to be sold a tiny meat press that will change everything? Welcome to the surreal world of self-help guru Cindy Salmon, a hilarious creation from the fearless Hayley Tantau.
 
As a character, Salmon herself is wonderfully fleshed out. An energetic career go-getter with a passion (...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 9:57am

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Tonight at the Melba Spiegeltent, the 100-year-old mirrored circus space is decorated with tropical plants in an atmospheric and Jurassic theme as comedian Darren Lever takes to the stage with his fascinating performance.
 
The concept is simple. Man Vs Wildlifev2.0 cleverly uses stand-up and storytelling to teach us about wildlife and nature conservation. The...

Posted 10 Apr 2017 @ 9:45am

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There’s doubting that there’s a new avenue to becoming a stand-up comic these days. Frenchy and fellow comedians such as Alex Williamson and Neel Kolhatkar have broken through on YouTube and Facebook, grown a loyal following from creating funny, shocking viral videos, then going on to use that fan base to begin regular touring.
 
With just under 1.4 million...

Posted 7 Apr 2017 @ 4:47pm

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The first rule of comedy shows is that you never want to be late to a comedy show – we all know terrible things happen when a comedian spies you shuffling in. I was terrified I was that person walking into Josie Long’s show Something Better; seeing her prancing around the stage making astute, sweary commentary on a modified version of If You Like Pina Coladas I was almost...

Posted 6 Apr 2017 @ 3:55pm

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For comedy trio Aunty Donna (Mark Samual Bonanno, Broden Kelly and Zachary Ruane) this is not their first Melbourne Comedy Festival rodeo. This year’s show Big Boys was performed at Max Watt’s. Aunty Donna, accompanied by musician and friend Tom, presented a dynamic show filled with vibrancy and overall phenomenal silliness.
 
The show comprised of individual...

Posted 5 Apr 2017 @ 11:46am

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Josh Glanc’s Manfül – Comedy Festival Review by Chris Swan
 
Are you a totally dweeb bag? Are you sick of walking down the street and getting the snot beat out of you by bullies? Then you need Manfül.
 
Comedian Josh Glanc’s latest show is presented in the form of an information seminar hosted by “real man” Dicky Rosenthal. Dicky has managed to...

Posted 5 Apr 2017 @ 10:51am

A 28-year comedic legacy and no one can escape the vice of preconception fastened to Jimeoin’s stage identity. His most rational and loyal guests will do-away with prejudice, absorbing his show with impartiality whereby criticism is undermined by Jimeoin being Jimeoin.

 

Attending his opening show of the 2017 Melbourne International Comedy Festival, it was important that I, for...

Posted 4 Apr 2017 @ 4:01pm

An unassuming art easel is the only thing that sits on an otherwise empty stage in the back corner of LOOP Bar. As the lights dim, what follows is a stand-up debut from a powerful trio of comedians who, by covering a variety of weirdly relatable topics, are certain to spark some big laughs.
 
First to grace the stage is Anthony McCormack who will take you on a winding journey...

Posted 4 Apr 2017 @ 3:51pm

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Emma Mary Hall has an agenda driven by disrespected lust and devotion; a cause characterised more by malicious venting than education. Discourteous and aware of it, Hall is unflinching in her disgust of the breed that’s plundered her of so much.
 
Yes I am talking about men and yes I may have been better off spending my Saturday night cosying up to a hot girl...

Posted 4 Apr 2017 @ 3:43pm

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Leave all expectations of what comedy should be at the door and enter the weird and wonderful world of Ceiling Fran. In an energetic 50 minutes, Fran Middleton’s debut solo performance literally takes you through a portal and into a realm of surprises, twists and turns in a mesmerising one woman show.
 
Set to soothing music, her candle-lit performance space...

Posted 4 Apr 2017 @ 3:29pm

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Apparently, more accidents happen in the bathroom than any other place in the home, but the eight-piece ensemble behind SOAP could care less. Performed in, out and over five bath tubs (claw footed to spa-luxury moderne), SOAP’s hour and a half gig is a tight meld of contemporary circus, dance, opera and classic clowning that’s funny, clever, thrilling, beautiful and...

Posted 29 Mar 2017 @ 1:56pm

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Following sold out runs at the 2015 and 2016 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Trainspotting Live arrives in Melbourne as part of this year’s Comedy Festival and it’ll be, without a doubt, unlike any trip to the theatre you’ve ever had before.
 
As you descend the stairs into the basement theatre on Flinders Lane the sound of thumping electronic music begins to...

Posted 22 Mar 2017 @ 12:04pm

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After an award-winning run in Sydney, the Judy Davis directed production of Brian Friel's 1979 play Faith Healer has made its way to Melbourne. The play tells the story of Francis Hardy, an Irish faith healer reflecting on his career as a travelling huckster. Told in four monologues, the play introduces Hardy’s perspective before complicating his version of events with the...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 5:20pm

 

When painting was declared ‘dead’ upon the invention of photography, no one could have predicted how digital technologies and later, waves of internet related art, would transform, rather than eliminate, the oldest art form.
 
Los Angeles-based artist Petra Cortright has been a key player in post-internet art since before it reached full saturation, and now a new selection...

Posted 22 Feb 2017 @ 10:47am

Back in a 1991 interview, Angus Young of AC/DC (one of the few mega-star bands that have largely – perhaps entirely to my knowledge – evaded Neil Hamburger’s wrath) quipped that he “Only knows one solo, and I’ve made a career of it.”
 
In the same turn, the character of Neil Hamburger essentially operates on one joke: crass exacerbations of celebrity excess. There’s nuance within,...

Posted 5 Feb 2017 @ 6:56pm

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Following sell-out success and almost universal acclaim with runs on Broadway and London's West End – one of the most successful new musicals of the 21st century has finally made its way to Melbourne in its Australian premiere. But can The Book of Mormon live up to the immense hype that surrounded it in the lead-up? With one hand on the bible, the answer is a resounding...

Posted 30 Jan 2017 @ 11:00am

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Melbourne Theatre Company returns for 2017 with a jam-packed season, kicking things off with Born Yesterday a '40s classic that rings particularly true today.
 
A fascinating portrayal of Washington corruption, political power-plays and the vulnerable reality of own flawed democracy, the production offers a compelling take on the current state of US politics...

Posted 25 Jan 2017 @ 1:03pm

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As expected, opening night of Cirque Du Soleil’s KOOZA saw a full (and star-studded) house take their seats inside the trademark blue-and-yellow Big Top currently located at Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse. Returning to its origins, the world-renowned French-Canadian company served up the intimacy of a smaller circus reliant on nothing more than incredible acrobatic...

Posted 7 Dec 2016 @ 4:57pm

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Pandering can be a difficult art. It’s inherently cheap, but often an irresistible ploy. Hannibal Buress sometimes opened the US stops of his ‘Hannibal Montanabal’ tour by doing the opposite: playing footage of Chicago teams destroying the hometown teams of the respective tour leg before taking the stage. But tonight in Melbourne, support DJ Tony Trimm did pander, playing...

Posted 22 Nov 2016 @ 2:48pm

Forty years and Melbourne has become a vista of vanguard progressions. A multicultural boom led to the re-enlivenment of a city which had stagnated ­– the CBD became a hoard of enthusiasm and vivaciousness. In the same time frame, esteemed Melbourne community radio broadcaster 3RRR has established itself as not just a cultural lifeblood but a divergent conversational retreat.
 
As...

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