Comedy Crackers

Review in Issue 10-2 | Summer 1998

‘I’m a comedian. I started at the bottom. I like it here,’ says Dave Dave, one of eight acts in Comedy Crackers, a mish mash cabaret evening of ‘alternative comedy. His acknowledgement, though obviously true, is nevertheless endearing and sums up the feeling of the evening. This is a night of underground comic talent, ranging from the abominable to the sublime, but performed with a warmth and openness that rarely leaves the audience ill at ease.

Most of the less successful acts seem full of undiscovered potential. Lenny and Maurice are hilarious character creations with a fabulous presence, but their act lacks any direction and leaves one feeling that practically nothing has happened. The Penguin Trio, however, whilst also doing practically nothing, have everyone in stitches. Generosity is the key, the ability to pull out unexpected, gem-like moments from the simplest of sources, without forcing it down the audience’s throats.

Fraser the Clown comes top here with his silent and sensitive gags. His act is very silly, utterly captivating and reminds you that even if you’ve seen it all before, it’s not what you do but how you do it that’s important. Matt Manning unfortunately lacks this generosity, and out of touch with the mood of the audience, is eventually booed off. On the other end of the scale are Susan and Barbara, who should get a medal for the most intelligent treatment ever of utterly stupid and nonsensensical material. Craftily manipulating ridiculous, dead-end, anti-scenarios with an infectious rhythm, they never once pretend to be funny, they just are.

Last on is the big, round, Danny Schlesinger with his big, round, yellow balloons. His fast-paced, hilarious tricks charm everyone and make for the perfect finale to a random, quirky but enjoyable evening.

Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Mar 1998

This article in the magazine

Issue 10-2
p. 24 - 25