Fun and circus games

Fun House (Strut & Fret Production House)

South Bank Piazza

September 7 – 24

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“Fun House” is Strut & Fret Production House’s brand new interactive show, making its debut at the Brisbane Festival, so those familiar with the Brisfest faves’ other works will know what to expect…. kinda, sorta. The show is an aptly named combo of circus trickery, full of froth, bubble and frivolity and much less saucier than their “Blanc de Blanc” and “Limbo” works.

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Bawdy humour and innuendo still appear, giving “Fun House” a spiegeltent feel, despite its appearance in the South Bank Piazza. There isn’t as much intimacy, but the bigger space provides lots of room to play as the show’s co-ringmaster and always crowd favourite Spencer Novich prances in as a unicorn to be joined by Trygve Wakenshaw as a white rabbit. Nice in their naughtiness and delightful as ever, together the two lead a band of madcap characters through a fast-paced 70-minutes of non-stop showmanship to a soundtrack featuring the music of viral YouTube sensation, DJ Pogo (the show’s absolute highlight).

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Although acts include swinging trapeze artists, tightrope walkers and alike feats of balance and aerial amazement, traditional acrobatic and stunt circus acts are relatively few and far between. Instead the “Fun House” experience is more like a fun and games variety show of silly song and dance numbers, motorbikes and even a ukulele number…  the kind of hyper-real experience that mind befall Alice in Wonderland, on acid. This gives the work a broad appeal beyond just the spectacle of its more adults-only shows and while it does drag a little, it also stands as testament to the company’s appreciation of all the different ways that you can choose to put contemporary circus together. The result is enjoyment on an immense scale, especially when acts are accompanied by nostalgic childhood show vision on screens behind the action, like a “Sesame Street” number that whimsically accompanies an early ‘umbrellas of love’ juggling duet. And you don’t get more fun than when jumping castles are in the house.

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