[THEATRE/MUSIC ~ AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE ~ USA]
Treasury 1860 Cabinet Room, Fri 22 Feb.
Elizabethan is a one man show, written and performed by David William Hughes, and combining songs written between 1580 and 1620, with jokes and blond wigs. It’s basically Mamma Mia, with 400 year old source material!
Hughes plays Tobias Bacon, and is a clever and talented performer, able to perform songs as both male and female characters, while playing the lute and keeping one leg in the air (seriously!). The venue (Cabinet Room at Treasury 1860) leant an air of historical truth to the performance and was a better choice than a more modern venue.
Audience participation was a feature of the show, and while others might enjoy that, I felt like a high school student anxious about being called upon by the teacher because I hadn’t done my homework. Eek! The three somewhat reluctant audience volunteers did a great job though.
Not all the jokes hit their mark. Several lines assumed an audience that was highly knowledgeable in history and theatre, other puns were almost too obvious, brick bat style. How many jokes can you make about cured meat anyway?
However, high points of the show were Hughes’ extensive use of euphemisms to describe losing one’s virginity, and the sixteenth century ditty about dildos that had Hughes almost yodelling. He was really hamming it up!
Elizabethan had its hits and misses for me but for the right audience, it’s a smoked, streaky, crispy night of fun.
Elizabethan continues at Café Outside The Square from 6.30pm on Sat 23 Feb and at Treasury 1860 – Treasury Tunnels – The Long Room from 3pm on Sun 24 Feb.
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.