Adelaide Fringe Festival's Down & Out troupe of performers dish out some serious party tricks!
Adelaide Fringe Festival: Down & Out Dressed in old-style ‘strong-man’ leotards, this troupe of performers dished out some serious party tricks! Accompanied by Francine (the BEAUTIFUL daughter of the Ring Master) the performers presented an amusing and enjoyable show full of bravado and slapstick. Opening the show was Boris – the titled ‘dope’ of the entourage. It was clear from the outset that we were in for some serious typecasting. After the introduction of each performer, the activities began with such fervour that I could not help imagining they were enjoying themselves a little too much for such a technical act. After three minutes or so the audience were full of the anticipated ‘aahs’ and ooohs’ and a few times were we so mesmerised by the skill (and healthy appearance) of the group, that we had to be coaxed out to clap. Fitted out with green gym mats, bendy bars, ropes, ladders, seesaw type creations and stacked crates the arena resembled a super-sized play yard. The biggest treat of all has to be the giant hula-hoops – they are super fast and made me rather dizzy. Accompanied by some pumping music, these guys show what is really possible with a couple of circular steel tubes and a massive amount of agility. Boris ‘the dope’ created an amazing solo on a rope, which was reminiscent of some interpretive dance I saw recently. We were treated to a myriad of mini-acts, magic and a singing saw. While this show boasts a ‘poignant narrative’ in its advertisement, it didn’t seem to deliver…maybe I was blinded by the muscle…. seriously though, the acting was at times entertaining but not enough to stimulate much idea about the intended narrative. I must mention that the Ring Master was quite sold on his role and saved a few seemingly unintended awkward moments. Leaving with a sense of amusement and admiration, I would recommend this skilled show to those who like to gasp at others bravado – though I would say it is the least pretentious show of bravado I have ever encountered. This show will entertain all ages! Adelaide Fringe Festival’s Down & Out is held in the RINGBOX in the Garden of Unearthly Delights between March 10-21 for $14-$22

Eleanor Zecchin

Friday 13 March, 2009

About the author

Eleanor Zecchin is an artist and visual art lecturer at Adelaide College for the Arts.