By Lisa Clark
The Comedy Festival brings all sorts of ways to make us laugh and this is a new one. Comedy shows that tell a story about travel and love are not new, but one performed completely in rhyming poetry is new to me. This is an interesting departure for Alexis Dubus from his famous alter-ego Marcel Lucont, though Marcel’s ability to play intelligently with language has always been evident. Cars & Girls won the Spirit of the Fringe Award at the Edinburgh Fringe last year and by the end that is no surprise at all.
This is a bold brave performance that began as an experiment on the Free Fringe that has obviously paid off. It’s a very polished performance with a big prop for a set, a large passport as a backdrop that he gradually attaches photos to and brilliant touches of sound and lighting to add to the mood. The sound and lighting are used sparingly and so lightly that they are barely noticeable. They add to the mood of the piece without taking the attention away from the riveting adventure.
The bulk of Alexis’s show is stories about his reminiscences of hitching through Europe and might give the tale the more appropriate title of Girls and Trucks. There are a lot of trucks and truckies, and girls. There are many characters that he brings to life with his amazing talent for accents and character acting. The action takes Dubus off the beaten path from France to Tangier and the Americas. The memory that lingers longest from these travelling experiences is his panorama of the Burning Man Festival experience and a sweet ending as surprising for us as it was to him.
It’s an exhausting bravura performance by Alexis. The delicate audiovisual touches and Dubus’s expressive voice keep the dense language from becoming overwhelming. There are laughs peppered throughout and some great punchlines but it is mostly romantic and joyous. The magic of Dubus’ performance was on the faces of the grinning audience members at the end, clapping like they didn’t want to stop.
Alexis Dubus – Cars & Girls is on at the Tuxedo Cat