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Fringe review: I Am Basketball Man

Adelaide Fringe

The 360 All Stars wowed Fringe-goers last year and continue to do so again, but look closer at the Fringe guide and you’ll notice a couple of the All Stars have branched out with their own shows. ★★★★

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Rashaun Daniels is one of the 360 All Stars – he is Basketball Man.

In his first solo gig, Daniels brings his street performance indoors and gets intimate with Adelaide Fringe audiences. With an impressive repertoire of world-class freestyle basketball tricks, punctuated with stories, raps and rhymes from his life as a street performer told with humour and humility, it feels like a privilege to bear witness to the next part of his journey as a performer.

On a Wednesday night in a small room named The Gallery above The Hindley (the new bar, restaurant and entertainment venue at the former HQ Complex site), it felt like we were transported back to the Adelaide Fringe circa 1996 – when world-class acts were experimenting on Adelaide audiences in whatever spaces they could find.

There was an air of genuine appreciation from the audience members, who seemed not to be expecting a finely polished show, but were there to hear an artist telling their story and see where it would go.

Hailing from a small town called Troy in New York State, Daniels grew up playing street basketball and dreaming of a way out of the future that awaited him there. After moving to Hawaii, where he lived and busked on the streets, he has earned his way to become an internationally acclaimed performer.

With an enormous, heartwarming smile, Daniels admits he is nervous about performing by himself on stage, under lights, to a paying audience, and while the performance as a whole is a little rough around the edges, this only seems to add to its raw and genuine feel. The free-styling basketball act is as skilled as you would find on any world stage.

With a 1996 Fringe ticket price tag of $10 and a highly skilled performance, this is a perfect reminder of what a fringe festival is about. Get along and support the artists who are giving their next big thing a go.

I Am Basketball Man is showing at The Gallery at The Hindley until March 17. Read more InDaily Fringe reviews and stories here.

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