Theatre review: Triplets

Three times the delight in this stand up show.

Electric Light Orchestra’s Evil Woman crooned as I took a seat in a cobwebbed, red-light-drenched room to see Triplets, a succession of stand-up routines establishing the differing skills of three Melbourne-based comedians. 

Laura Buskes took the stage first. She came across as candid and good-natured, like your best friend from high school, pointedly seeking decency in this harsh world. She riffed about a host of zeitgeisty topics, including dating apps, chauvinists being afforded platforms, and the endurance of the astrology craze. During a bit about gender roles, her voice dropped perfectly into the gruff register of ads angled at men, and I kept laughing about it long after Triplets had ended. 

Hayley May Bracken followed. She also broached, in a feminist key, taxing expectations and pressure-induced ironies of our time. Her delivery was dryer than her forerunner’s, and the deliberate, smiley discomfiture she retained clearly resonated with much of the audience. Her jokes tended to be concise, and almost touchingly insightful. (I have never attempted stand-up, but let out a small gasp of impressed agreement when Bracken remarked that a certain balance of confidence and insecurity prompts one to try.) 

Cristina Spizzica, the most seasoned comedian of the three, was tasked with the finale. The volubility of her routine, veering from reflections on her adolescence and a monk-related revelation to a (very accurate) Borat impersonation, was enjoyably redolent of improv. I valued, too, her willingness to home in on her own queerness and on queer culture at large. 

Read: Performance review: L’Hôtel

Triplets mightn’t have contained any jokes about witchcraft, but it did consider other forms of horror: that of late capitalism, of despicable views gaining traction, of being forced into roles you don’t want to play (which I mean figuratively, and literally: Buskes and Bracken both extracted dark humour from their experiences as actors). 

For millennials who feel unmoored from meaning or steeped in social media, Triplets will be a treat. 

TIC: Swanston, Melbourne
Tickets: $18-$23

Triplets will be performed until 23 October 2022 as part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival.

Olivia Arcaro is a freelance writer and English tutor based in Naarm/Melbourne. A student of RMIT University’s Bachelor of Creative Writing, she is at work on a collection of essays and a coming-of-age novel. You can contact her at, or on Instagram: @oliviaarcaro.