Tag Archives: Improv

been | The Blind Date Project

A date so awful to make you appreciate all your tinder dating disasters. 

“Silo’s 2014 sell-out hit returns for a new year and a new you. Five years on, serial dater Anna’s back on the market and looking for love in all the wrong places. Each night, she meets a new blind date, each one played by a different performer, each one a surprise to Anna.”

I walked into the theatre the same way I walk into a bar to meet all my “blind dates” :  open minded, aloof with zero expectations and a hope for some entertainment and a good story to be told over wine. Greeted by the sound of a leather clad bar keep (Yvette Parsons) singing questionable karaoke, I felt an equal dose of intrigue and “what the hell did I just agree to review”.  An 80/20 reaction to most of my actual dates.

Anna (Natalie Medlock) sits at the bar nervously checking her phone waiting for her Tinder date to arrive.  Shortly after her date arrives – who just happens to be pregnant; Anna feigns indifference but this revelation becomes the central talking point of the “blind date”. This 100% improv comedy explores the great human tragedy that is the online dating profile vs the actual flawed reality.

The date becomes increasingly difficult to watch without wincing as their life stories get told and their poorly constructed personas begin to show cracks and unravel at each twist and turn. The phones begin to go off with more frequency. There are times where the audience is kept guessing who will end up making a run for it. Spoiler alert – They don’t. I am watching a train wreck. Like that bad date you know you never want to see again, but are patiently waiting to see how it all turns out. As a woman we have been known to be too polite to just leave when we ought to.

No I’m not leaving a negative review, on the contrary, the performance delivered on it’s premise. And it left me in awe. With a tinge of hope. There really could be someone for “everyone”.

It definitely put me off going on dates.  Oh, who am I kidding….looking down at my phone…”Uber is 2 mins away”….

 

Showing until 30th September. Book your tickets here .

NZICF 19 | The Improv Bandits – No Scripts, No Gimmicks, No Safety Net!

The Improv Bandits first show of the 2019 New Zealand International Comedy Festival opened with plenty of enthusiasm and laughs to go around. As part of the Auckland comedy scene for the past 20+ years, they have a solid grounding – the show began with energy and candour as the Bandits engaged with the crowd early on.

Arguably one of the more challenging comedy approaches, improv has its fair share of challenges, and the Improv Bandits did not disappoint with their quick-thinking and cohesive stage persona. Part of what fuels improv is audience interaction, and here they excelled; Although I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t filled with mild terror when they approached the back row near where we were seated, in pursuits of audience input, I’ll pass on that, thank you.

We enjoyed a showcase of stand-up variety classics in Who’s Line is it Anyway style, with the teams’ dynamic and cohesive rapport. They were quickly to take queue from one another’s’ prompts, and managed to keep the flow going for a solid 1 hour of entertainment. Although a little predictable at times, The Bandits utilised common improv tropes, exaggeration of crowd-supplied anecdotes and many a pun – the borderline wholesome experience was well-worth braving the frigid winter weather for the hour of hilarity.

3.5/5 Stars

The Improv Bandits perform at the Herald Theatre as part of the 2019 NZ International Comedy Festival from 2 – 26 May. For more infomation about their scheduled shows as well as the Festival head to the Comedy Fest website!

NZICF 18 | Not Suitable for Children

Despite being jet-lagged from an 11-hour flight the day before and running on fumes, The Umbilical Brothers managed to thoroughly impress and entertain with their special brand of effervescent physical comedy.

It’s not often I find myself with nothing to criticise, but it’s a struggle to find things I didn’t enjoy during this show. The Umbilical Brothers produce an impressive array of sound effects, using just themselves and a couple of mics. Lots of well-timed (mostly) to-and-fro, ‘Dane’ and ‘Shaved’ are cheeky and barefaced in nature with a comedic charm, I was totally immersed during the show. The aptly titled show contains a blend of nsfw banter, innuendo, and a Disney “cameo appearance”- of sorts, making for a perfectly-paced, cleverly composed entertainment piece.

The Umbilical Brothers will be performing “Not Suitable for Children” until this Saturday the 19th of May. I highly recommend checking out the show before it ends.

Purchase tickets to see the duo HERE.

4.5/5 Stars

For the full line-up of shows in the Festival head to the Comedy Fest website. Running 26 April – 28 May 2017.