Meat – The Musical (FringeTIX)
Hannah Gadsby & Amelia Jane Hunter @ Fringe Factory (The Fridge)
10:30pm, Tue 4 Mar 2008
Kaye (Gadsby) and Berverly (Hunter) are “identical” twins bequeathed a butchery by their father; their quest for his posthumous validation lies in creating a prize-winning sausage in the local butcher’s competition. Due to the less-than-sanitary conditions of the sisters’ butchery, the health authorities are keen on maintaining a rigorous inspection schedule… but what to do when an over-zealous inspector threatens to shut them down? And what should they do with the body?
…you can see where this is going, can’t you?
After having missed – through poor planning – Hannah Gadsby’s solo standup show earlier in the Fringe, I was ultra-keen to check this one out. Of course, opening night was probably a bad idea – besides the obvious teething problems (with Gadsby hissing instructions to the techie from offstage), I also had to contend with the press contingent – bless their evil, shit-stained hearts. There was a meat raffle on offer, too – dunno whether that’s a regular occurrence or not, but it certainly looked tempting.
Gadsby is deliciously dry in her delivery, Hunter painfully naïve – both perfect for their respective roles. There’s a really odd couple of interviews with the police that have them unconvincingly changing roles, but it’s all played for laughs and doesn’t come across too badly.
The most glaring problem with Meat – the Musical is, of course, the fact that it’s not a musical. This seems to indicate that the show is underdone; but what’s there is a reasonable giggle, just not a meaty guffaw-fest.