Want to make the most of the final week of the Mad March mayhem? Here are some Adelaide Festival and Fringe shows to get fired up about, plus a selection of four and five-star performances you might have missed.
Dark comedy Gobby is a poignantly written production by a young woman living in a post #MeToo world. ★★★ ½
Confessional comedian Larry Dean offers an hour of self-deprecating, crude humour with a side of rowdy boyish charm. ★★★★
Dreamgun: Film Reads’ take on The Silence of the Lambs is an outrageously funny show that left me craving a Chianti and fava beans, as well as more of their absurd brand of comedy. ★★★★ ½
The Tempest in a tent. Four actors playing 20-plus characters. Hilarious, high-speed, on-stage costume changes. Could Shakespeare be any more fun? ★★★★★
Gone Girls is 55 minutes of quick-witted, captivating and sometimes titillating theatre, exploring how two female politicians from very different ideological parties manage power, leadership spills and #auspol. ★★★★ ½
The bomb’s gone off. You’ve survived the blast. How long would it take for you to lose the plot when faced with a life of total solitude? ★★★ ½
Erica Visser is like a kid in a lolly shop at this year’s Adelaide Fringe, attending three shows a night in The Garden of Unearthly Delights after winning a Golden Key to the parklands venue. With the Fringe heading towards its March 15 finale, Erica shares her some of her festival highlights.
This British stage adaptation of a literary classic has some up and down moments. ★★★ ½
Melbourne art rock band Tropical Fuck Storm performed a live score to award-winning neo-noir film No Country For Old Men, which should have left audiences transfixed but ultimately proved unsatisfying. ★★★
Adelaide Fringe theatre hub Holden Street Theatres is struggling with its lowest festival ticket sales in three years, pleading with supporters to spread the word about its shows and “keep this baby going”.
Bond: An Unauthorised Parody is a cheeky and entertaining one-man theatre experience at this year’s Adelaide Fringe. ★★★
Fancy yourself as someone who can spot the trick a mile away? Think again. In less than an hour, Magical will have you making an optometrist appointment. ★★★★★
Based on a 1917 story by Kafka, this powerful solo performance about a primate’s struggle to overcome the confines of captivity shows that history does repeat itself. ★★★★ ½
The world’s most dangerous ukulele band are back, with their punk-rock attitude ripping into tunes and proving the uke is worth more than its weight in chords. ★★★★
This acrobatic tribute to the cult movie The Blues Brothers sees performers somersaulting across tables, balancing on top of chairs and almost getting singed underneath a flaming limbo stick. ★★★★
Furnace and the Fundamentals are bringing FURNAPALOOZA to the Adelaide Entertainment Centre for the Adelaide Fringe.
Are you prepared to feed a life-size dinosaur or have your head placed inside a T-Rex’s mouth? ★★★ ½
A night of cocktails and the suspension of reality with a line-up of Japanese magicians should leave revellers enchanted, not counting the minutes until the hour is up. ★★
Seven acrobats joyfully tumble, leap and bound to live percussion in this stripped-back and fun performance in Gluttony’s The Octagon. ★★★ ½
It’s claimed that nostalgia ain’t what it used to be, but it’s indisputable that An Andrews Sisters Tribute time-shifts the Norwood Concert Hall with a charming program and polished performance that captivates its audience. ★★★★
High-flying and hilarious, Remi Martin’s L.I.A.R. (Life is a Rehearsal) is an unmissable experience pulsing with life. ★★★★ ½
Comedy hypnotism may sit outside the comfort zone of some festival-goers, or at least on the fringe. But that didn’t stop 20 eager volunteers approaching the stage to be put in a trance on the opening night of this show. ★★★★ ½
Far from slick and brazenly R18+, rising comedy star, social media provocateur and Utopia actress Nina Oyama is a welcome reprieve from the Fringe’s tried and trusted comedy line-up. ★★★★
Ever wanted to feel like you’re at a party in a giant flute of Champagne? Fill your glass, take your seat and let the bubbles wash over you as the latest iteration of Blanc de Blanc takes the stage in a grand encore. ★★★★ ½
Barbaroi is circus with attitude: a dystopian-styled display of daring acrobatics that is all grit, no glitter. ★★★★
What’s at stake when a child takes on the role of a parent? As a young girl fights to keep her family together in her mother’s absence, she’s forced to make difficult decisions. ★★★★
Saturated in emotional truth and unapologetically low-fi, Train Lord is testament to the powerful potential of Fringe shows that hark back to the no-frills days of the festival’s past. ★★★★
What’s haunting Max? One minute he’s ordering a sandwich in a café, the next he’s hurling a chair through the shop window. Passengers is the story of a man who is in the dark about his own divided self. ★★★★★
Well does he – come clean, that is? ‘Yes and no’ might not make a satisfactory answer for most situations but it suits this performance perfectly. ★★★★
The Greek tragic love story Orpheus is brought to life in this Fringe show at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, where roses and bats make the perfect minimalist setting. ★★★★½
Three of the best comedians from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival roused a small crowd in a large tent to laughter – with one obvious standout performer. ★★★
Looking for laughs at the Adelaide Fringe? Here are six international artists and emerging Australian comedians you may not have heard of or seen yet who are selling out shows and scooping awards all over the festivals scene.
The Garden of Unearthly Delights left Adelaide for the first time in its 20-year history yesterday, staging a 10-act gala show for 1200 people on Kangaroo Island.
Equal parts intriguing and baffling, No.33 relies on its audience members’ curiosity to solve the mystery of what happened to the inhabitants of an old house. ★★★
A capella, beatbox, and themes such as modern technology and body dysmorphia are neatly stitched together in a scintillating show that breathes new life into Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. ★★★★ ½
With little more than 30 metres of thick, white rope and the strength of their own bodies, the performers of One Fell Swoop circus deliver an hour of aerial acrobatic perfection. ★★★★
It’s Cheap Tuesday at the Fringe, and while that’s great for punters, it’s also a chance for emerging artists to build their profile and find new audiences.
Chronic illness is too often undiscussed in today’s society and disability is even worse, with the prefix ‘dis’ meaning ‘the negative of’, but Floral Peroxide ensures Fringe won’t fall into the trap of conforming to these dissociative norms. ★★★★
This is experimental theatre at its best – serious, silly, compelling and brilliantly staged. ★★★★ ½
Dylan Cole interweaves tragedy with hilarity in his monologue as dishevelled, daytime-drinking hoarder Jeremy Parker, whose veneer of cheery enthusiasm starts to crack as his attempt to de-clutter forces him to face the grief he’s buried. ★★★★
The drag and burlesque extravaganza Yummy Unleashed is a wild, glittering celebration of femininity, sex and absurdity. ★★★★