Saturday, July 23, 2016

Telia Nevile, The Bad Boys of Music Theatre : MICF Reviews

April 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Comedy, Comedy Reviews

Poet Laureate Telia Nevile – For Whom the Bell Tolls

When I was in Prep, the Grade Six boys would call me ‘hairy legs’ and put me in bins. They’d also throw my cardigan into trees and I’d have to call a teacher to get it down for me.

I was bad at and loathed sports (I don’t know which came first) and any competitive recess activity that wasn’t reading Goosebumps books.

I once told a boy- let’s call him Jake, because that’s his name- to tell his friend- let’s call him Julian, because that’s his name- that I liked him and Jake trotted back with the message that Julian thought I was ugly and weird.

In high school, I was often badgered for my wordiness and desire to read or listen to my Discman than meet boys by the front fence or bully smaller creatures. I got “speak English, Lisa” a lot.

As we all trotted into Poet Laureate Telia Nevile’s show For Whom the Bell Tolls, many of us are having similar ‘Nam-type flashbacks to our awkward school days.

Those that were not blessed (or, cursed, really) with popularity or, at least, pack dominance skills, were often sent to a sort of social bargain bin. I mince nothing of my awkward, distressing past and neither does our performer; much respect to you, Telia Nevile.

Nevile’s show is not going to appeal to all; fans looking for a laugh about high school bathrooms or bad teen dates will need to look elsewhere because, rather than stand-up comedy or cabaret like many of this year’s Com Fest acts, Nevile is a poet of effervescing talent.

Pieces like ‘Losing my Virgilinity’; ‘Ring my Belljar’ and ‘The Darkness Inside’ are all performed with a mixture of Nevile’s two show selves: awkwardly confident teenage Nevile and strong adult established poet Nevile.

The things she does with words are sublime, particularly delight to an epic word-nerd like your humble reviewer.

Nevile’s passion for poetry and its execution via her watchful, awkward teenage character is verbose and heartwarming- well worth the punt, even if poetry isn’t your usual night out.


The Bad Boys of Music Theatre

Bad Boys Of Music Theatre

Bad Boys Of Music Theatre

John Frankland and Andrew Strano, the well-dressed crooners that make up The Bad Boys of Music Theatre, have created a cabaret show to tickle all the senses.

More a variety show than skits and jokes, The Bad Boys’ show A Fine Bromance rests upon the idea of heterosexual male closeness- “bromance, for those uninitiated.

The show is a super cheesy mix of songs (including nods to It Takes Two, Friend Like Me from Aladdin and Guy Love from Scrubs), puppetry and hip-hop (Strano getting all T-Pain in our faces) that, although tight, exuberant and fun, felt a dash stifled and hoary.

If there is one thing that has bothered me this Festival, it has been the work put into a tight, well-choreographed (or well-written) show that makes less effort to personal and light.

It is tough to explain, but well performing a scene that has been done and done and done every night for two weeks, it shouldn’t look and sound thusly. Basically, banter and jokes should sound fresh and not overwrought.

So it is that I find my only real issue with the Bad Boys; Strano and Frankland are delightful performers, strutting and crooning like modern Jackmans and, although the homoerotic jokes get a bit worn out after a while, their love/hate relationship is a joy to watch.

Especially when they let loose all Dean and Frank-like. Smooth.

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