Review: DEANNE SMITH’s Let’s Do This

From awkward beginnings to utter charm

By Bradley Storer

About eight seconds after psyching up herself and the audience with Survivor’s Eye of the Tiger, comedian Deanne Smith cuts the music short and admits ‘I can’t maintain this level of energy for very long’.

Smith opens with a ukulele tune in which she recruits the audience to interject at her command with the title of her show – the song never really managed to gain momentum since Smith was constantly forced to stop and wait for the audience’s response, and this made for a slightly awkward opening. After this small bump in the road though, her show Let’s Do It for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival picks up and soars.

Deanne Smith

The main thrust of Smith’s show is an examination of her inability to be a self-confident and secure person, gleefully dissecting her various neuroses to side-splitting and, at times, jaw-dropping effect.

Smith’s strength is her innate sweetness and lovability, which allows her to delve into some unexpectedly filthy and dark places (at my particular performance, even Smith herself remarked at several points, surprised ‘You all got on board with that!’). Topics range from the unfortunate implications of the term ‘femi-nazis’ and her hatred of penguins to a remarkably optimistic view of humanity’s current effects on the environment.

Interspersed throughout are many moments of audience participation, people individually to be sung at, called up to assist onstage or to take photos during the show (for one particular section, I’d advise bringing along a friend to save potential embarrassment). The hour show flies by and it would be hard to imagine anyone who would not be doubled over in laughter by the end.

DATES: 30th MARCH – 21st APRIL

TIME: 9:45 (8:45 Sunday)

VENUE: MELBOURNE TOWN HALL – CLOAK ROOM

TICKETS: Full $25, Preview $20, Tightarse Tuesday $20, Laugh Pack (n/a Fri & Sat) $20, Concession $20 (n/a Fri & Sat), Group (8+) (N/A Fri & Sat) $20

BOOKINGS: www.ticketmaster.com.au, Phone – 1300 660 013, www.comedyfestival.com.au, Melbourne Town Hall Box Office

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