Getting it off their chests . . . sort of

Fit to bust: Bev Killick and Emma Powell are bringing their down under brand of up top humour to the UK

Busting out!

Lichfield Garrick

****

This is not a show for the the faint hearted, prudes with leggings on their pianos or maiden aunts who think sex is what coal comes in.

Australian duo Emma Powell and Bev Killick are rather ample ladies who perform much of the show topless - and there is a fair amount of top to show.

Not that the introduction of Hillary and Condoleezza (Emma's) and Starsky & Hutch (Bev's) is sleazy or even sexy, they just become rather large props in a two hour look at the “boobiverse”.

If you remember Puppetry of the Penis then this is that same sort of thing but different sex and higher up. Cross that with a sort of Muppets with nipples - for example the boobs sing Abba - and you start to get a flavour of at least parts of the evening.

To make sure nothing was missed the pertinent parts were relayed on to a giant  screen from a video camera which provided both close ups and audience shots.

Emma has a background in musical comedy, she was Rosie in Mamma Mia for two years on the Australasia Tour, as well as appearing in cabaret and one woman shows. She also has a cracking voice even on send ups such as Mammories or that Dolly Parton(ish) hit 9-k-g.

Bev's background is more rooted in comedy and TV comedy in Australia

This was the first UK performance of their show which has taken Australia and New Zealand by storm and no doubt before it reaches Edinburgh later in the summer it will have been tweaked for British audiences.

It is irreverent, doesn't give a hoot,  at times it is crude and crass but at others it is just brilliant. It is often very funny and never less than amusing.

MORE POLISHED

There are one or two rough edges and the first half appeared to be running out of ideas as if ‘you have laughed at the wobbly bits so what now?' The duo clearly found some inspiration in the interval though as the second half hit its stride and seemed much more polished.

One of the many highlights of the show was in the first half though with a collection of shadow pictures all relayed to the giant screen, from the Taj Mahal to a camel while Batman in particular was brilliant. Amazing what the old droopy bits can do with a bit of imagination.

Bev's comedy background came to the fore with a stand up routine on the history of the bra which ranged over such diverse subjects as incontinence after childbirth, large undies being more comfortable, beige bras, department store make up counters and the dangers of flatulence while wearing a G-string - thongs for those modern types out there.

We had the mammogram song - a complete mystery for the few men in the audience although there was a mutual intake of breath among the men when it was suggested a similar test might be devised for male dangly bits.

The audience were also encouraged to take part - i.e. “volunteers” were dragged on stage. Thus Alan from the audience found himself topless and finding out how quickly he could put a bra on himself.

OUT FOR THE LADS

Then five women were pulled on stage to see how quickly they could remove their bras under their clothes. A competition won by a lady called Bev. Emma and the other Bev  then sort of suggested that the women might like to  . . . you know  . . . show their . . . and Bev2 was there - getting ‘em out for the lads as they say  followed by two more volunteers who busted out, so to speak, to cheers and hoots from the mainly female audience.

This is a show that is perfect for a girls' night out - after all women live with boobs every day, they are old friends and are at ease with them whereas matter-of-fact booberism is all a bit of a hostile environment for men who prefer theirs at a distance on Page 3 with a pint - or in a lap dancing club with champagne for the bankers among us.

The show was also instructional with Emma giving a demonstration of how to wear a backless dress which involves lengths of gaffer tape and Sellotape which will give a whole new interest to watching the walk down the red carpet at premieres and the Oscars - not quite so glamorous with a bust done up like a badly wrapped parcel underneath methinks.

Remember Jake the Peg, well this show had Meg the Mug with the extra  . . . you get the idea and to end it all we had giant blow up boobs bouncing around the audience. It was that sort of night. It is a show that needs a bit more polish but is still great fun. To 22-07-10

Roger Clarke

The Show will also be at Birmingham's Alexandra Theatre, September 7.

http://www.busting-out.com/theshow.html

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