Alasdair Tremblay-Birchall : Success Arms

By Elyce Phillips

Could the secret to success be in your stance? Can you limit your chances of having an ugly baby? These are among the many questions you didn’t know you had that Alasdair Tremblay-Birchall answers in Success Arms.

Success Arms is a grab-bag of bits. It’s sort of about getting older and sort of about finding success, but mostly about quick, well-written jokes. Tremblay-Birchall stumbles from one to the next with self-depreciating clumsiness. Stilted bouts of audience interaction bridged the gaps, conversations rarely being more extended than, “What’s that you’ve got there? A cornetto? Where’d you get that?” For the most part, Tremblay-Birchall’s delivery style is endearing, though at times it interrupted the flow of the show. It was in longer pieces, such as a cringe-inducingly extended bit about his urethra, where he built up some momentum and really shone.

The material is all quite strong, but ‘Success Arms’ feels more like a particularly good extended set at an open-mic. Tremblay-Birchall keeps things very casual, as though he’s testing out his stuff on a group of mates. It makes for a nice sense of camaraderie sitting in the audience. At the end of the show, with no back exit to the Ladies’ Lounge, Tremblay-Birchall stands by the door and high-fives everyone as they leave, the sound of slaps filtering into the hall behind you as you exit the Forum.

‘Success Arms’ is rough in its presentation, but highly enjoyable. Tremblay-Birchall is a talented writer and a personable performer. The show has some great moments and you’ll definitely leave with a smile on your face.

Success Arms is on at the Forum Theatre – Ladies’ Lounge until April 20