Alexis Dubus – A Surprisingly Tasteful Show About Nudity [FringeTIX]
Alexis Dubus @ The Tuxedo Cat – Rooftop
7:30pm, Sun 21 Feb 2010
Another drinkie or two between shows, and we walk into the TuxCat’s Rooftop venue to be greeted by Philip Burgers (from Dr. Brown Behaves) posed naked on stage, Alexis Dubus quietly painting away. There’s a chuckle by everyone as they enter the room; Irene decides the optimum seats are directly in front of Dr. Brown’s cock.
Thankfully – for me, anyway – as soon as the audience are bedded in and tittering, Burgers leaves the stage (to appreciative applause), and Dubus begins his accurately-named Surprisingly Tasteful Show About Nudity. And it is very tasteful; whilst nudity is obviously at the core of the show, this is first-and-foremost more of an informative discussion than a collection of cheap gags.
Sure, there’s the odd humorous aside into nudity through history – witty quips surround fertility statues and the Rude Man, but it’s all broken up with facts and figures that Dubus has been collecting. There’s a brief discussion of the impact of streaking, and we’re introduced to Stephen Gough, the Nude Rambler, currently still in prison after being arrested for Breaching the Peace.
The bulk of the material, though, revolves around Dubus’ own explorations into nudity – recounting stories of his research trips to naturist events at theme parks, and, more prominently, his participation in the World Naked Bike Ride – first the Adelaide version (with all of fourteen participants), and then the London event (which had a lazy 1200 riders). Sure, he started the ride in his Nude Suit, but he’s already committed to riding stark naked in Adelaide’s event this year if he can get 100 other people to sign up.
This is the first time I’d seen Alexis Dubus perform outside his Marcel Lucont alter ego, and he’s got quite a likeable style. He’s enthusiastic without being effusive, and he seems to be taking this subject matter very seriously – so much so that, when I bumped into him (fnarr fnarr) in his Nude Suit one afternoon in Synagogue Place, he mentioned to me that he was considering doing a free show during which everyone would nude up. I’ve no idea whether that eventuated but… yeah. Like I said, he’s taking it seriously.
And, at the end of the day, this was an enjoyable performance. It wasn’t wall-to-wall laughs, but I’m not sure it was meant to be; just one chap talking about nudity, tastefully. Just your average Sunday evening, really.