ff2014, Day 19

So: Am I is easily one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. A stunning performance, gorgeous choreography, and sublime production: I was sitting in the middle of Row A, and The Blast at the beginning of the show nearly melted my face off. Phenomenal.

  1. Am I
  2. Mutual A-Gender
  3. Gabriel
  4. Decadence
  5. Late Night Comedy at The Producers Bar (#2)

Early night tonight; Roman Tragedies is tomorrow.

ff2014, Day 18

More Festival opening hijinks tonight with the VIP opening soiree. A nice chat with some old friends, some fun accosting some of the more higher-up peeps in FestivalCorp, and – of course – a drop or two of Croser. And the prawn & avocado salsa things were fantastic.

I had tickets to Charles Barrington tonight, but Steve Sheehan and I were the only two in the audience; we wound up sitting around having a fascinating (for me) conversation about the art of comedy, likes & dislikes, and my current pet topic: Comp Culture. That discussion was worth way more than the price of admission; I feel a little guilty for having stolen their time.

  1. An Elephant in the Room
  2. Wizard Sandwiches: The Last Lunch
  3. Facty Fact Game Show: Are Comedians Good Lovers?

You know how I said “back into the fray tomorrow”? Yeah. Not so much. My head is in another place, socially.

ff2014, Day 17

And so the Festival begins. I toddled up to the opening of the Samstag’s chunk of the Festival’s Visual Arts programme, drank a heap of Croser (thank you Petaluma!), then scuttled off to squeeze in an acrobatic show at the Croquet Club, then back to Queens Theatre for my first Festival show of the year: the wonderful BigMouth.

Then down to the VIP preview of Lola’s Pergola, which is alright – not sure it’s worth wandering halfway across the city for, though.

  1. Elixir
  2. BigMouth

After we started getting pushed out the door at Lola’s (at 11pm!), I simply could not face another event. I felt a social weariness that I usually only feel in the last few days of a campaign; as a result, I was home by 11:30pm. Back into the fray tomorrow.

ff2014, Day 16

Another great day. Sat in on an early showing of a piece (and got to listen to artist Q&A-speak… swoon), and experience the mindfucking unreality of The Well. It may be unrecommendable, but it was bloody good.

  1. Show us your love.
  2. Miss K is… Wrong.com!
  3. Love & Other Acts of Theft
  4. The Well (Redux)
  5. Dave Campbell: Insanarchy

Almost had another AFD… almost. It’s just that I find it absolutely impossible to sit in La Bohème without a drink in my hand.

ff2014, Day 15

I tell you what – today was a pretty bloody fun day. Yours the Face deserves way more than the five people that were in the audience tonight, though the venue is going to be a nightmare come Clipsal time. I dashed in to see Ubu Roi tonight because I learnt that 5pound cancelled their final show (to which I had a ticket); sorry to the Love & Other Acts of Theft team, but I’ll see your show tomorrow. WAKE was a cracking find – a musical about grief – and it sounds absolutely gorgeous in Arcade Lane.

  1. Yours the Face
  2. 5pound theatre’s Ubu Roi
  3. WAKE
  4. Rhino Room Late Show (#1)

Oh – and today was my first Alcohol Free Day (AFD) of the season. Yeah – I’m livin’ healthy.

ff2014, Day 14

Finally got around to finishing my Festival planning – all but one show is booked now. Starting to get thoroughly excited for it, especially after a couple of recent (Fringe) shows that made me think they were trying to evoke ideas seen in previous Festivals.

  1. Now We Can Talk
  2. The Bedroom Philosopher
  3. MONO-

Mondays, eh? Crazy times.

ff2014, Day 12

Had a lot of fun today: chatted with one of the producers of In Canberra Tonight for aeons (catching the brilliant fun of the Out Of Print Book Club as a result), saw a bunch of oddball shows, and got mistaken for a woman no less than three times – once during a show.

  1. Door
  2. Out Of Print Book Club
  3. WOODCOURT: Spoils
  4. Stuart Bowden: She Was Probably Not A Robot
  5. Vicious Circles
  6. Late Night Comedy at The Producers Bar

Tomorrow is the big test: 10am start, running around the city, four straight theatre pieces on the back end. It’s currently 3:12am.

ff2014, Day 11

A weird old day: I caught The Magnets doing a short set at the Central Markets, was up on stage twice, fell asleep in a show, and got to see the masterful Jacques Barrett again. Dear lord he’s amazing.

  1. Gobsmacked
  2. CJ Delling – Reality Bandit
  3. Joel Creasey in Rock God
  4. Jon Bennett: Fire In The Meth Lab
  5. Shaggers

Bizarre discovery of the day: dumplings are not-so-good for preparing one for a significant drinking session.

ff2014, Day 10

It’d be a lot easier to give artists money if they (a) scheduled shows outside the band of 7pm-10pm, and (2) didn’t cancel shows outside of that timespan. Just sayin’.

  1. Bekitzor
  2. Gravity Boots: Can you believe we’re in a forest?
  3. WOODCOURT: Carly and Troy do ‘A Doll’s House’
  4. WOODCOURT: Jackson! Le diner est prêt!

One of the dancers from Bekitzor (Bella?) came up to us in the Fringe Club this evening to thank us for coming; how lovely is that?

ff2014, Day 9

An odd day, really: planning was a real mish-mash, with last minute decisions and reversals. Still, it turned out to be a bloody entertaining run of shows.

  1. In Canberra Tonight in Adelaide Tonight
  2. Folly – A Miserable Yorkshire Poetry Musical
  3. Nath Valvo – Almost 30
  4. Sex with Animals

I was so totally not in the mood for heavy theatre today; light’n’breezy is what I needed. Three hours sleep on top of plentiful jelly shots does that to a person.

ff2014, Day 8

Hello! Just got back from the Fringe Club. Listened to DJ BottleRockets whilst occasionally sitting under an umbrella. Some guy who I didn’t recognise came up to me and asked how many shows I’d seen, then jokingly told me to pull my finger out.

It is late, and I am drunk.

  1. Square Peg
  2. Trash Test Dummies
  3. The Sheds
  4. The Darker
  5. Boris & Sergey’s Vaudevillian Adventure

I’m not sure, but I think that the $3-jelly-shot announcement was actually a warning. Will let you know tomorrow.

ff2014, Day 7

The first Monday. The Garden is closed, options are limited… but none of that matters, because Zephyr is playing.

  1. Radio Variety Hour
  2. Jazzflip – Zephyr Quartet vs 1.1 Immermann

Long story short: that Jazzflip session was fucking amazing. Not only did I get my jollies from watching Zephyr perform once more, but 1.1 Immermann may become another in the increasingly long line of bands that I will start following around like an affectionate puppy. That closing song brought the best type of tears to my eyes.

ff2014, Day 6

What a patchy old day this was! Crowds varied wildly throughout my five shows: near-sell-out, five, near-sell-out, half-full, and quarter-full-and-clueless. That last one was really fucking weird.

  1. The Iron(ic) Lady
  2. Roaring Accordion
  4. The Market
  5. Safety First

On my way to Bluebee Room I happened upon a young lass from Hong Kong trying to find the TuxCat’s Pultney Street digs; apparently Jon Bennett has a free ticket for couch-surfers things going at the moment. Since it was right on starting time when I met her, we jogged the block-and-a-half to Raj House, where Bennett’s show had been rescheduled; while I was there, I took the opportunity to check out the fancy Raj House (so much has changed since I saw Neil Hamburger there in December!) and have a lovely chat with Fee. So I reckon that’s karma at work.

ff2014, Day 5

So this was a nice way to ease into the Fringe: a gentle six shows in the day, rounded off with a Fringe Club investigation (which yielded a bunch of non-Artsy people – or, as Fez Faanana would call them, “boring bogan c#nts”).

  1. The Bunker Trilogy: Morgana
  2. WOODCOURT: Animorphed
  4. Claire Ford: ConsciousMess
  5. Chris Radburn – Breaking Rad
  6. Rainbow Rabbits with Rabies

It was a cracking set of shows today, with only one or two lesser lights. Despite its oddball name (and presence in the “Comedy” section of the Guide), Nob Happy Sock is my first sure-fire winner of this year’s Fringe: whilst it is funny, it’s also poignant and sweet and meaningful.