Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Slightly Fat Features - Variety in the Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

We got to the Tobacco Factory Theatre early to bagsy prime seats in the centre front row of the auditorium. And then, I couldn’t help but wonder whether this was an ill-advised move at a comedy variety show.

They were kind. Although, as we left the theatre, the Slightly Fat Feature’s drummer, Matt, did comment that my 5-year old looked a bit less scared now it was all over. She wasn’t scared but I did get my fair share of cuddles of unsurety throughout the performance, especially when said percussion man had offered her one of his knocked out Tic-Tac teeth (we’d just eaten a whole box between us, coincidentally).

As is her way, she sat opened mouthed through much of the utter silliness before her. I giggled throughout the majority of the evening. The show reminded me of being in a festival circus tent, such as Watchet has to offer: nothing too rude, definitely OK for young children, in all its pantoesque innuendo.

Initially, I cringed mirthfully when two of the performers put a row of toy dogs in a line to smash them with a hammer to play out “How much is that doggie in the window.” She got it. I got it. We were there.

50 magical tricks in 5 minutes, all completely awful and fun – congratulations. Evel Kenil on his unicycle jumping 4 double decker buses, so slapstick. A duel for the love of Anna, a female member of the audience, entertaining and a little jumpy up there at the front. Escapology, what a build-up. A Vegas Elvis harping on about healthy eating, spear that pepper! Miniature Cowboy, please sit on my lap next time.

Guest performer, Les Bubb, was excellent. Mime and comedy done well. “Balloons aren’t really that heavy, are they, Mummy. Is he pretending?” No flies on my daughter.

On our way back to the car, she gave thought to how a man could really be sawn in two. “Maybe there were two men. One on was on his knees and another one in the other box?” she said sleepily. You’d have to stay up all night to catch these kids out. Wayne Marvell, you were her absolute favourite, something about the eyes ...?

Slightly Fat Features in the Factory runs at the Tobacco Factory Theatre until Saturday 29th October. And yes, it’s very much recommended if you like a laugh, whatever your age.

Review by Becky

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