Alice has been going through a rough time. The sort of time that might make some people want to withdraw to a quiet place for a while and not have to entertain a bunch of strangers for a month but the show must go on and Alice is a trooper. A born entertainer who’s managed to rustle up an impressive show that she admits wasn’t quite what she planned when she made her Festival application.
Australia is blessed with comedians who appeal to all levels of taste and sophistication and Alice is definitely at the intellectual end. At its heart is a talk she gave for TEDx, but her themes and ideas are universal. What is love, belief, tragedy, truth and beauty and can we explore them while laughing at how absurd it can all be? There is also the story that surrounds her whole TEDx experience which is hilarious in itself.
Alice is skilled in transforming her densely written piece into a conversation with the audience. And it is a conversation, there is space for the audience to express themselves providing entertaining feedback, recognition and sing-alongs. Yes, Sing-alongs. Alice plays some cute songs on her trusty talking banjo which is an unexpected delight. There are also engrossing stories, delightful observations, dating advice, threaded through with a pre-recorded interview and peppered with excellent gags. She is in turns hilarious, charming, moving, gently sarcastic, silly and always a warm presence in the intimate space.
For a show put together under duress, there are a lot of laughs to be had. There are also a few tears so you might want to remember the tissues. It is quite an ambitious show that while entertaining as it is, it would be extra awesome with a decent sound and a tech rather than just her laptop. Alice gives her audience the best show she can and proves that she is a household name in the making. Go and see her so you can say ‘I saw her when’ and help get her moved to the bigger, better equipped room she deserves to be in.
Savage is on at The Downstairs Lounge @ The Grand Mercure Hotel until April 19