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Gordon Southern

A Brief History Of History

BackGordon-Southern_470x270.jpg

All history. One hour. With jokes.

International word clown Gordon Southern’s attempt to cover the history of civilisation AND make it funny. With a winning mix of storytelling, tiny bursts of music and lightning quick audience interaction, all of history will be explored in very little detail.

**** ½ Adelaide Advertiser

**** Herald Sun

“Stellar stand-upThe Age

www.gordonsouthern.com

 

Showing In:

Auckland Wellington

Dates:

Tue 1- Sat 5 May, 7pm

Venues:

Cavern Club, Wellington

Tickets:

Adults $30.00
Conc. $24.00
Groups 5+ $24.00* service fees may apply

Bookings:

0800 TICKETEK (842 538)

Show Duration:

1 hour
 

Critics Review

Chortle'It all makes for a feel good hour that fair flies by, in contrast to so many festival shows.'open/close
Southern’s eminently charming and good-natured and makes for a jaunty, confident guide through his sprawling subject, and like an accomplished plate-spinner keeps several running gags aloft – from facts that might not be true to cheeky jibes at a couple of members of the audience packed into this tiny space. It all makes for a feel good hour that fair flies by, in contrast to so many festival shows.
Darien O Reilly, thepunch.com.au'He highlights the absurdity integral to history and utilises PowerPoint in a manner which many university lecturers could learn from. 'open/close
He throws a modern spotlight upon these older cultures in an often hilarious manner The pacing is machine gun. He highlights the absurdity integral to history and utilises PowerPoint in a manner which many university lecturers could learn from.

A series of dodgy and hilarious short raps help explain certain points and highlight particularly nonsensical parts. Southern has an obvious deep affection for history and this abiding interest helps connect the tide of information from being too overwhelming. He occasionally plays a bit fast and loose with the facts, but then Wikipedia is not the most infallible of tools.

His audience interaction is relaxed and smooth, he utilises entertaining aspects provided by them and will gently tease but in a friendly and almost welcoming manner. He is mischievous and more than a tad naughty and it’s his ad-libbing and back-and-forth banter with the audience that shows his many years of stand-up experience.

This second instalment on the Adelaide Fringe looks at Gordon Southern: International World Clown, who will be playing Melbourne Comedy Festival next month.

Gordon Southern’s A Brief History of History aims to present the history of history in an hour. The self proclaimed International World Clown aims to roam freely throughout the many cultures and empires that have risen and fallen throughout the ages and introduce the many weird and wonderful aspects of life and recorded history to us.

The show cracks along at such a pace that nuggets of comedy gold can be overlooked as joke piles upon pun and absurdity meshes with reality. There are moments where good taste is pushed but humour should never be held captive as political satire, parody and allegory have proven throughout the Ages. Southern presents a breezy, bright and exuberant show that zips along, utterly engaging the audience, entertaining and educating them in a wonderful and manic hour of comedy.
Jule Scherer - Stuff.co.nz'"This lesson is a hell of a ride and never has learning about history been so much fun."'open/close
Gordon Southern is the history teacher you've never had. The British comedian serves a one-hour-lesson packed with quirky fun facts in his new programme, aptly tilted A Brief History of History.

The energetic Londoner is assuming the role of tutor for the night, equipped with PowerPoint slides, laser-pointer and an ancient mixing machine loaded with an array of jingles.

These set the background to alert the audience to fun facts, set the stage when the heavy topic of religion is approached and provide the beats for him to break into freestyle rap.

The high-speed journey takes the audience from dinosaurs to suitcases with wheels in slightly more than an hour.

In the snug and cosy venue Cavern Club this manic teacher frequently engages with the audience, including giving out gold stars for correct answers and telling off audience members for talking during class.

We learn about the similarities between religion and whiskey and what Keith Moon, and Led Zeppelin's John Bonham have in common with Jesus.

If you're easily offended by jokes about religion, this might not be your pick of the night, but if you're a fan of fun facts and find the odd type font joke hilarious, Southern is your man.

This lesson is a hell of a ride and never has learning about history been so much fun.

Armed with an arsenal of fun facts - and indeed not-so-fun facts - British comic Gordon Southern embarks upon an ambitious and all-encompassing dissection of history. Southern’s presentation not only packs a punch, but it’s devilishly funny and even stays the course in its pursuit of education, all inside of one hour. Whichever way you slice it, A Brief History of History is mighty impressive.

The super-enthusiastic Southern, though understandably rushed, never once degenerates into a reckless lecturer frivolous with fact. Instead, A Brief History of History is genuinely informative, with meticulous research and careful consideration driving the show as much as Southern's stage-intensity. Essentially, the show is Horrible Histories on crack - and yes, that is as amazing as it sounds.

Southern assumes the role of hip high school teacher, a series of powerpoint slides and a penchant for freestyle-rap firmly entrenched in his bag of tricks. Aside from the latent, technical ingenuity of his presentation, Southern’s energy and excitement are infectious, doing well to enthral the audience from the outset. It’s difficult not to get caught up in Southern’s frenzied execution.

Ultimately, this is one hell of a history lesson, continually fun and indeed funny at every turn. Its lessons conducted breakneck speed, A Brief History of History is exhilarating, Southern's biting wit and historical satire ensuring a hilarious experience.
punch.com.au at the Adelade Fringe'Southern presents a breezy, bright and exuberant show that zips along, utterly engaging the audience, entertaining and educating them in a wonderful and manic hour of comedy.'open/close
Gordon Southern’s A Brief History of History aims to present the history of history in an hour. The self proclaimed International World Clown aims to roam freely throughout the many cultures and empires that have risen and fallen throughout the ages and introduce the many weird and wonderful aspects of life and recorded history to us.

He throws a modern spotlight upon these older cultures in an often hilarious manner The pacing is machine gun. He highlights the absurdity integral to history and utilises PowerPoint in a manner which many university lecturers could learn from.

A series of dodgy and hilarious short raps help explain certain points and highlight particularly nonsensical parts. Southern has an obvious deep affection for history and this abiding interest helps connect the tide of information from being too overwhelming. He occasionally plays a bit fast and loose with the facts, but then Wikipedia is not the most infallible of tools.

His audience interaction is relaxed and smooth, he utilises entertaining aspects provided by them and will gently tease but in a friendly and almost welcoming manner. He is mischievous and more than a tad naughty and it’s his ad-libbing and back-and-forth banter with the audience that shows his many years of stand-up experience.

The show cracks along at such a pace that nuggets of comedy gold can be overlooked as joke piles upon pun and absurdity meshes with reality. There are moments where good taste is pushed but humour should never be held captive as political satire, parody and allegory have proven throughout the Ages. Southern presents a breezy, bright and exuberant show that zips along, utterly engaging the audience, entertaining and educating them in a wonderful and manic hour of comedy.
Shannon McKeogh, anewleaf.com.au'Gordon Southern is the goofy, charming British history teacher you’ve always wanted.'open/close
Gordon Southern is the goofy, charming British history teacher you’ve always wanted. He’s enthusiastic, swears a bit and probably wouldn’t mark you down if you wrote an essay on the other Michelangelo – the teenage mutant ninja turtle. Standing over the audience in a tiny room at The Forum, Southern attempts the seemingly impossible – the history of history in only a mere hour.

Southern plays the role of the teacher quite seriously, demanding we pay attention to a PowerPoint which will take us back in time, using pop culture references to make history fresh. Who would win in a fight between Hitler and Stalin?

With the aid of amusing keyboard sound effects, Southern adds a game show quality to the show and rewards audience members with gold stars for answering questions correctly. At times the show is overwhelming; Southern gives a glimpse into a contemporary history class in the future: jokes, puns, fun facts and fake facts “did you know Caesar invented the Caesar salad?”

Southern is a man of many tricks, the most impressive being his hilarious rapping skills. “Monks didn’t get ladies /everyone had the plague-ies.” Despite Southern’s energy some of the jokes are lost due to the room overheating and becoming a Bikram-like Comedy show.

Southern tries to make the most of a bad situation. He mops his face with a Chux wipe and tells the audience: “you’ll lose two kilos by the end of the show”. Unfortunately most of the audience were sluggish and clearly ready for hibernation. Southern is a likeable guy, he doesn’t depend on smut for a laugh and does a damn good job summing up the key points of history.

This show is recommended for all who missed out on the cool history teacher at school.

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