Saturday, March 5, 2011

Sexytime! Chortle Review

Tessa Waters and Kai Smythe are very brave. Not only because they are performing a comedy show with barely any words, but because they begin it with barely anything on. Where else to begin an exploration of sex, but with Genesis? In little more than flesh coloured underwear and leaves, they give us an amusing take on Adam & Eve. The leaves drop and reveal naughty bits drawn on with texta. It's sort of extreme version of the nude suits that Judith Lucy, Denise Scott and Linda Gibson used to wear, and it can be a bit confronting in the front row.

Tessa and Kai obviously have a very close relationship off stage, for they often get quite intimate. Between sketches their on-stage interaction reminds me of Die Roten Punkte, with Tessa's Germanic accent sealing this impression. Kai does not speak at all but still manages to create a fabulous sleazy persona. Their flirting with the audience has a consequence that surprises everyone when a girl's dad kisses Kai on the cheek. He reacts perfectly by going all coy, yet strangely delighted.

The show itself is a neat 50 minutes of silent skits set to music, all about sex. They tend to involve a lot of mime and interpretive dance, so if these aren't your thing, you might want to find some stand-up. Still if you stayed you might be pleasantly surprised. Tessa and Kai are hilarious at what they do. I enjoyed the armed combat with cardboard ‘penis and boob’ shield vs cardboard ‘cross with Bible’ shield, played out to the overdramatic strains of O Fortuna from Carmina Burana. Appropriate music if you know it is a celebration of sex, gambling and drinking written by some very naughty monks.

Their final and longest sketch presented all the awkward horrors and delights of a first date that lasts 'til morning. Stripped back down to their undies, the sweet ending mirrors the opening sketch but with an appropriately happier, healthier outcome. Not all the sketches are as brilliant, but their kooky characters are able to pull it all off – so to speak – and keep the audience in fits.

Date of live review: Saturday 26th Feb, '11

Review by Lisa Clark for

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