Directed by: Laser Kiwi
Te Auaha, 19th Mar 2021
Reviewed by: Madelaine Empson
Cucumbers! Melons! Grapes! Bring your shades and get your weird on because this deliciously fruity show is so brilliant, it’s dazzling.
From chefs to clowns and looping violinists, IDIOM 002 features a variety of artists at the very top of their game. The acts aren’t all connected but the mood is carefully curated by our hosts, the only but indeed best surreal sketch circus trio in the world, Laser Kiwi. Plus, several cucumbers find their way onto the stage more than once. I don’t know why, but I like it.
The high-energy variety show begins with a rousing medley of artists giving us a small taste of what’s to come. Comedian Sowmya Hiremath then takes the stage, navigating ghost buses (and ghost husbands for that matter) with a relatable and refreshing honesty.
Over the course of the evening we meet aerial hoop artist Sophia O’Connor, whose athleticism astounds; Sharn Te Pou, who does flips and splits in roller skates and can even sing, mesmerising all every moment he’s on stage; chef Jack Shewell, who is really good at chopping and flambéing things; world-renowned circus artist Emma Phillips, who juggles whole tables with her feet and has the audience gasping for breath; and clown Fraser Hooper, who rides a tiny bike and wields giant gloves in a boxing routine for the ages.
Laser Kiwi’s programming of physical and stand-up comedy shows their aptitude for balance, echoed in their inclusion of MOTTE (violinist and composer Anita Clark). MOTTE’s otherworldly, experimental music isn’t upbeat like the other acts but it’s my favourite addition to the show.
Tying it all together are our hosts Zane Jarvie, Degge Jarvie, and Imogen Stone, who delight the crowd with their rhythmic bobbing and unique brand of Pictionary, sometimes at the same time. Brothers Zane and Degge make quick work of chopping six airborne cucumbers while Stone’s impressive and dexterous candle-lighting act is another show highlight.
It might sound cliché but I truly mean it when I say there is never a dull moment in IDIOM 002.