Late Night Letters and Numbers.

By Lisa Clark This is a fun nerdy little comedy quiz show that is based upon the stupidly axed Letters and Numbers which was based on the UK show Countdown, but not called Countdown for very obvious reasons. Before that there was a French show called  Des Chiffres et Des Lettres, but you didn’t need to know that. The best way to see it on TV is being sent up in a stunning episode of The IT Crowd. called The Final Countdown.

The basic idea is; two contestants compete in various rounds, in this case they are guest comedians. The Letters round is like boggle where the contestants try to make the longest words out of 9 random letters. In the numbers round a random target number under 1000 is given by an audience member, then 6 random numbers are drawn and the contestants must use these to somehow reach the target number using mathematics. The final round is the Conundrum which is an anagram that the contestants must be the first to unscramble. Where it differentiates itself from the TV shows is that it is live, it is comedy and it is late at night.

The late night comedy atmosphere means that although they take the game seriously to a point, there is a lot of silliness, veering off topic and naughty language. They are also fairly encouraging of audience participation and will award points to impressive audience members. You could hear a lot of audience members around you guessing at words or getting the maths perfect, but not everyone was brave enough to pipe up when invited to do so. It can be pretty hard not to participate in this infectious show.

The night we were there guest comedians Karin Danger – nee Muiznieks (Hot Box) and Yianni (Numb & Number) made admirable adversaries while up the other end of the desk the Watson (Once Were Planets) duo played comedy relief with Adam McKenzie and Tegan Higginbotham as moderators in charge of the giant dictionary. Ben McKenzie (Splendid Chaps) makes a fair go at being Lily Serna, letter displayer/ maths genius but for reasons I can’t put my finger on, cannot quite capture her demure allure. The host, in great contrast to the cheerful and rather straightlaced Richard Morecroft, is the famously cynical & comically grumpy Nick Caddaye who does a great job of keeping it all rolling and not running too late.

Late night Letters and Numbers is a fun way to finish a full Friday night of comedy. Also keep your eye out for further Letters and Numbers nights happening outside of the festival at Trades Hall throughout the year.

Late Night Letters and Numbers is only on Friday nights of the Festival at Trades Hall in the Old Council Chambers
http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/late-night-letters-and-numbers

5 Good Reasons to see Cinema Fiasco, Tegan Higginbotham Touched By Fev and Watson – Once Were Planets

5 GOOD REASONS TO COME TO CINEMA FIASCO
1. The movies shown at Cinema Fiasco are very bad but also very wonderful.

2. Everything you need to know about bad movies is explained by two experts in their field.

3. For once you’ll be glad there are people talking in the cinema.

4. You’ll be part of an occasion once lovingly described as “church for weirdos”.

5. Hosts Geoff Wallis and Janet A. McLeod are well-dressed and strangely attractive.

Bookings to see Geoff Wallis and Janet A. McLeod take the mickey out of some outrageously silly films http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/at-cinema-nova-cinema-fiasco

 

5 Reasons to see Tegan Higginbotham Touched By Fev 

1 After a stellar 2012, Tegan will this year be attempting to end the war between Bogans and Nerds by creating Touched By Fev, a show about Harry Potter and Brendan Fevola. If you come to Touched By Fev, you won’t just be seeing a show…you’ll be witnessing history!

2 If Touched By Fev doesn’t go down well, Tegan will have no choice but to start doing shows about more accessible and mainstream subject mater along the lines of  “Tegan Higginbotham in Relationships and Public Transport”. Yuck!

3 Tegan goes to great lengths in order to put together her shows. Last year she took several hits to the head. This year she tracked down one of the AFL’s most notorious players…and had coffee with him. Find out which was more damaging.

4 Tegan doesn’t speak in the third person during her show, unlike when she’s writing “5 reasons to see my show” lists.

5 This show will be as mature & classy as it’s title.

Tigkets to hear Tegan’s childhood love for Fev AND Harry Potter – http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/touched-by-fev-tegan-higginbotham

 

5 Good Reasons to see Watson – Once Were Planets
1 Once Were Planets is going to be Watson’s biggest, most ambitious show to date. Don’t miss this opportunity to see what happens when Tegan foolishly says to Adam “Sure, we’ll do whatever you want…”

2 This isn’t going to just be a another science-fiction nerd show. Once Were Planets is also a Science-Fiction Drama, Science-Fiction Comedy and Science-Fiction Science-Fiction. There’s something for everyone!

3 Not only will Liam Ryan be gracing the Watson stage again (YAY) but he’ll also be joined by award winning puppet company “The Indirect Object” who will attempt to bring Adam and Tegan’s odd imagination to life.

4 Once Were Planets has it’s very own soundtrack which will be performed live each night by the extraordinarily talented Gillian Lever. So if Adam and Tegan go too far off script and lose the audience, you can always just listen to the pretty music.

5 Aliens, space-ships, explosions and NO BURLESQUE whatsoever.

Another way to see Tegan Higginbotham with Adam McKenzie & friends as Watson having fun in space – http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/once-were-planets-watson

WATSON –Shakespeare Fight Club

By Elyce Phillips.

Imagine, if you will, a battle royale where your weapon of choice is Shakespearian verse. Your guide is Caliban. Your enemy, Tybalt. Now imagine it in a small room in the Victoria Hotel, with next to no budget and a smattering of Star Wars references and you have something like Shakespeare Fight Club.

WATSON (Tegan Higginbotham and Adam McKenzie) are joined by Cameron McKenzie and Liam Ryan in bringing this stage spectacular to life. The whole production feels like a play a bunch of kids are putting on in their backyard. The props and set are made from bits and pieces from Bunnings, the costumes are huge, and the levels of enthusiasm are through (the incredibly low) roof. If you’re after a polished piece of comic theatre, this isn’t it. This late night show is hilarious chaos. Shakespeare Fight Club seems to be a show that the comedians are going to see. There were several in the audience the night I went, and it made the show self-conscious at times, as though they were playing to the comedians rather than the whole audience. One laughed exaggeratedly at a few jokes that missed the mark, which disrupted the flow of the show early on, however this was turned around to great effect during a scene in which Higginbotham hypnotizes McKenzie.

But Shakespeare Fight Club has some great moments. Liam Ryan’s Caliban is creepy in the best possible way. The fight scenes are brilliantly choreographed – there is even some shadow puppetry. The on-stage relationship between Higginbotham and McKenzie is one that really works. Higginbotham’s self-interested straight woman is the perfect foil to McKenzie’s endearingly dorky fool. The jokes are hit-and-miss, but they are delivered with such gusto that you just don’t care.

Shakespeare Fight Club is Shakespeare as it is meant to be seen – violent, very silly and full of dick jokes.

WATSON’s –Shakespeare Fight Club is on in the Acacia Room at the Victoria Hotel until April 21

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2012/season/shows/shakespeare-fight-club-watson/