Photo – Donald Michael Chambers
Claire Healy is a very attractive artist. As we entered the tiny room she had been allocated for the Fringe Festival she was seated at the electric keyboard rippling away at intro music and chatting to patrons in a charming manner.
This, she informs us, is her first show in Australia for some years. She has performed in Europe, including the U.K. Her first number underlined that fact, as it was all about the constant facile press coverage of the Royal families and television personalities. It was well written and funny but perhaps too British in context to hit the mark with the local market.
In what seems to be a Fringe tradition there was audience involvement. A kindly girl was recruited to dispense chocolate wheaten biscuits to the winners of a face pulling contest. Healy called out the emotions to be expressed and judged the winners who were duly offered a biscuit prize. This might have worked better if she had called up the participants to the stage. As it was we couldn’t see the winners of the various participants.
The next was a Python-esque number about potatoes which was reasonably amusing.
Then Healy went to work on her special pet, Gavin the goldfish. Most goldfish are fairly mild companions. Not Gavin. He thrashes wildly amongst his “tiny plastic trees” with murderous intent.
The highlight of the show was a diatribe against a computer game obsessive. Zombies and their destruction was the object of the game, to the consternation, nay despair, of the totally ignored narrator. It really hit home with many audience members. I, for one, was glad she explained who Julian Blanc was. Apparently an internationally known pick-up coach. His seedy persona led to an interesting segment with hands on (sorry!) advice for would-be seducers. This has resulted in his loss of entry visas to many countries, including Australia.
The finale called for a sing-along and I was surprised how well the audience responded to the drinking song. Unfortunately most of the audience declined to join in the “Never Have I Ever”. This called for the retelling of your most embarrassing moment – so what could have been an hilarious segment fell rather flat.
Healy has musical talent and good timing. She is a delightful persona onstage. Once she has settled back in her home country and tailored her material to suit Oz audiences she will do well.
A Bit of an Overshare
Venue: Noodle Palace | 19 Francis Street, Northbridge, WA
Dates: 11 – 21 February 2015