Tag: Tripod

REVIEW: Evgeny Shwarz’s THE DRAGON

Comedy trio Tripod spread their draconian wings

By Ross Larkin

Corruption. Power. Denial. Oppression… Sound amusing? Well, it is.

Toby Schmitz has adapted Evgeny Schwarz’s 1944 satirical play The Dragon into a modern theatrical feast of fiery wit and cleverly apt and poignant dialogue.

From the outset, some skepticism is understandable. Has director, Marion Potts, created a fairy tale? A pantomime? A musical? It’s a little hazy. Soon after, however, it really doesn’t matter.

TheDragon

Melbourne’s ingenious comic trio Tripod (Scott Edgar, Steven Gates and Simon Hall) have not only written the music for the piece, they also perform their catchy soundtrack while portraying the good guy onlookers as well as the contrasting evil three-headed dragon – one hilarious head each.

Sir Lancelot (played with gorgeous charm by Jimi Bani) arrives in a small village to slay said dragon and relieve its inhabitants of the oppression and control inflicted by their so-called ‘almighty’, while rescuing a fair maiden (Nikki Shiels), condemned to wed the manipulative beast.

However, the brainwashed town and its foolishly egocentric and impressionable mayor (the ever-impressive Kym Gyngell), are under the illusion the dragon is to be worshipped as their all-knowing leader, and remain under its spell, oblivious to their repressed existence, and therefore resistant to Lancelot’s quest.

In an Orwellian struggle to revolutionise a totalitarian-wracked culture (coincidently, or more likely deliberately, in line with current Australian politics), Schmitz’s impressively astute and often poetic dialogue, meshed with Tripod’s loveable commentating music and lyrics, is a delightful merry-go-round of tension and fun.

Perched on a very effective revolving set, The Dragon is confronting, thought-provoking, amusing and highly satisfying, thanks to a brilliant script and soundtrack, not to mention a delightfully talented cast.

The Dragon is playing now until July 26, 2013.
Wed to Sat 7.30pm, Sat 2.00pm matinee,
Sun 5.00pm, Tues July 23 at 6.30pm.

The Malthouse Theatre, 113 Sturt Street, Melbourne.

Bookings on (03) 9685 5111 or at www.malthousetheatre.com.au

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Review: YON AND HIS PRISM OF SEXY THOUGHTS

As good as its title

By Jessica Cornish

Yon

Yon and His Prism of Sexy Thoughts had a familiar format to the shows of his famous group act – however it was so smothered with sexual references that comparatively it made Tripod look like a family-friendly entertainment band. Don’t worry though, Yon – a.k.a Simon Hall, hasn’t actually left the comedic trio – he’s just expanding his comic horizons at this year’s Comedy Festival.

Yon, or more accurately known as the Man-daddy, was a quirky and amusing front man, backed by talented musicians, SJ (vocals, guitar, tambourine and piano) and Naomune Anzai (synthesiser and backing vocals), and with the trusty drum-machine tucked into a corner.

Wrapped in his red silk dressing gown and slippers, Yon requested his audience watch the proceedings through a veil of sexy thoughts, which was necessary considering the whole show centred around sexual relations, fantasies and troubles with his wife. His audience participation requirements even included throwing a couple torches into the crowd to ensure two free follow-spot operators for the night.

Yon reminisced in the sadness of losing his virginity at the ripe age of 23 to an ex-girlfriend at the time who pitied him. He also talked of more awkward nights where he morphed into a glorified dildo stand for a stripper, which caused tiny tears to fall on to his wife’s pregnant belly. Yes – I know. Want to know what happened next with Mrs Yon though?  You’ll just have to go to the show because I’m not going to tell you!

His songs were slightly and deliberately uncomfortable at times, but continually hilarious. Memorable tunes still looping in my head included such gems as “0.05% Chance Of F&*#ing Her”, and “I’ll Go Back On The Anti-Depressants If You Do Too“.

If you’re a modest and demure being who feels uncomfortable at the thought of sex, this show probably isn’t for you, but for everyone else it will be 60 minutes of high fun and ridiculousness.

Venue: The Butterfly Club (Carson Place off Little Collins St) CBD

Dates: April 11-13 / 18-20

Time: 10.30pm

Price: Full $23, Conc $20, Group (8+) $18

Bookings:

www.ticketmaster.com.au

Ticketmaster 1300 660 013

At the venue 9690 2000

thebutterflyclub.com

At the door

Move It Or Lose It: The Fight to Save THE BUTTERFLY CLUB

The fate of an amazing Melbourne performance venue is in our hands…

By Myron My

I have been going to the Butterfly Club for a few years now and have had the opportunity to watch some amazing and varied shows there: ones that otherwise would not have seen the light of day had it not been for this curated venue. The Butterfly Club has given emerging and established performers the opportunity to create new works and have them watched by a welcoming and open-minded audience.

Since 1999, The Butterfly Club has presented more than 1300 new Australian works. It has given immensely to the theatre community in discovering and nurturing performers and now it needs our help. The Butterfly Club must relocate from South Melbourne to 256 Collins Street in the city centre in February 2013. Director Mr Simone Pulga said the move was due to the unbearable costs of operating in the current premises. “If we increased the cost of drinks to match the rise in rent, we’d have to charge $12.50 for a stubby. We must move The Butterfly Club to a better location.

The Butterfly Club 1

“Paradoxically, inner-city Melbourne has provided us with an affordable, long-term opportunity to create a new theatre space in an exciting unused building. The show room will be larger with more comfortable seating but the venue will remain just as intimate and quirky with the much-loved decor and regular shows moving with the venue,” he said.

The Butterfly Club has a sustainable arts model which doesn’t rely on any government subsidies and even though this model will be replicated in the new location it first needs funds specifically for the relocation and – when housing Australia’s largest collection of kitsch art – this is not going to be easy!

A community fundraising campaign is currently underway using the popular crowd-funding website Pozible. The campaign is embracing the ‘Buy A Brick’ phenomena, aptly designated ‘Cash For Kitsch’. Supporters will be able to adopt a piece of The Butterfly Club history from among its wondrous collection of miscellany, and ensure it has a home at the new venue.

The artist community including Tim Minchin, Eddie Perfect, Marieke Hardy, Dan Ilik, Tripod and many more have rallied behind the campaign, donating exclusive rewards and experiences. $130,000 is needed for the relocation, and it is hoped at least $20,000 of this can be raised via the crowd-funding campaign, which closes on 16 January.

The Butterfly Club is a Melbourne icon in the theatre, comedy and cabaret world and something we all need to band together over to ensure that it can continue to showcase our home-grown talent. To donate and get some seriously good rewards – not including the tingly feeling of doing something awesome – click http://pozible.com/thebutterflyclub for more information.

Review: LACHLAN MACLEOD’S A Very Merry Christmas

Get into this christmas comedy quick!

By Melissa Trickey

After having a somewhat scrooge-y day, I was a bit “bah humbug” when I entered The Butterfly Club on Thursday evening…. But the “magic, majesty and hhhhhwhimsy” of Lachlan’s Macleod’s A Very Merry Christmas soon warmed the cockles of my heart to turn my frown upside down and make me Madame President of the Christmas Spirit Club!

Christmas sure smacked me in the face as soon as I walked in the door, with the busiest set I’ve ever seen in that performance space. I had no idea the stage could fit so much! Three musical instruments, a fully decorated Christmas tree, a framed Jesus picture and a curious object that was concealed by some kind of mystery Christmas material…

This turned out to be Lachlan himself, who promptly did what I did not expect at all – sat as his keyboard and played a (seemingly) serious song about Christmas. Next second he totally bazinga’d me with the lyrics: “The doors are locked, I’ve got your cash, so f***you all!” People didn’t seem to mind though – we were all laughing too hard!

There were many lyrical gems like this along the way. Lachlan touched on such topics as re-gifting, office work parties, due rewards from Santa for being a bad little boy, and the evergreen last-minute present shopping. His lyrics are simple, direct and right on the money (except for the priest thing…), and his songs are very funny and appealing to a broad audience with great writing, delivery and chorey!

Lachlan has a gift for simple and effective storytelling that is quite endearing and suited the show very well. Some opening night nerves made Lachlan appear slightly jittery at times, but I’m sure they will settle down and Lachlan can relax into his performance more. From a performer’s perspective he has put A LOT of pressure on himself with his all-singing, all-gags, mostly-playing and sometimes-dancing agenda! In accompanying himself on no less than three instruments, Lachlan certainly is working harder than most. 

I thought there was a slight lag in the middle of the show that could be tightened up by shaving back some verses and material. It was good to be mellow but the feeling rather overstayed its welcome.  However, the finale was sharp, witty, and brilliant to watch, with the emergence of a special Christmas costume and resulting song. I don’t want to give too much away but it was absolutely hysterical and a closing highlight for the show!

Lachlan is everyday funny like Hamish and Andy, writes clever and witty lyrics like Tim Minchin, and delivers them with the pathos of Tripod. One day I will see him on TV and be like, “Hey, I reviewed that guy once!” Thanks for the Handy Christmas Facts, Lachlan, and for the numerous laughs! Merry Christmas!

Dates: Thurs 8th to Sun 11th Dec
Time: Thurs-Sat at 9pm & Sun at 8pm

Venue and bookings: The Butterfly Club, Sth Melbourne