Last night I caught 2 Absolut Fringe shows at Filmbase, one theatre and one variety. Here’s my thoughts on both:
Broken Croí – Heart Briste
“Manchán Magan is a disillusioned Gaeilge fanatic seeking revenge for the death of the language on his star pupil, a lonely 18 year old dancer. He offers the audience an opportunity to redeem the situation by answering some simple questions.”
Sitting before Gaeilgóir agus múinteor Manchán Maga while the cúpla focail were being thrown at the audience took me right back to my schooldays, back to the dreaded Gaeilge lessons in the seomra ranga. Manchán is fanatical and obsessed with the Irish language which proves to be both a little scary and funny at the same time, much like the teanga Gaeilge itself.
Enter “Cailín” – star pupil, moody teenager & troubled daughter all in one Max Factor-ed package. The Irish class descends into a series of arguments and exchanges between the two characters with Manchán desperately trying to understand the “trína chéile” mind of his teenage daughter.
Eva O’Connor who plays “Cailín” gave a superb performance in what was overall a good show but some aspects of it just didn’t appeal to me. While it posed interesting questions around language, communication and relationships I felt it suffered from what I call the “Tommy Tiernan effect” – just a bit too much unecessary swearing and vulgarity.
“From the glitz of a glitterball to the grain of a security tape, comedy and zeitgeist culture collide in this shiny cabaret lucky-dip. Seasoned performers and virgin talents collaborate to create something you’ve never seen before.”
Unfortunately, I was pretty disappointed with Crash Test Cabaret. The promise of random cabaret acts, audience participation and on-the-spot creativity somehow made me expect a lot more than I got for my few bucks last night.
The highlight of the show was the act “Red Wine” who came from the audience and provided some light relief in the form of a song set to some rather lovely guitar picking. Two of the lowest points for me included seeing an audience member being made topless and left on stage while a “feminist” treated us to some less than entertaining rap while one of the cast spent the entire show moving around the audience taking photos with his large, annoying and downright painful flash (we were sitting in darkness for crying out loud!!!).
Some seemed to love it, I sadly was not one of those. Crash Test Cabaret = crash and burn.
If you fancy a go, it’s at Filmbase at 9 until the 17th.