By the time we had sat in our seats Sam Simmons had already hijacked the audience. Entering with the stragglers Simmons soon set up his captives for an interesting and hilarious journey through his twisted and sometimes obscure thought process. Sam Simmons has problems, he knows problems plus he also knows some of the solutions and shares them in his show aptly named ‘Problems’ running Saturday 26th April to Wednesday 30th April at the Herald Theatre.
From eavesdropping on private conversations with his sub conscious and homemade props to illustrated snap shots of random thoughts and his co-host the ‘Old El Paso Taco Kit’, Simmons’s performance is weird, but good weird, very good weird. Simmons takes the dance moves, musical ditties, and ridiculous antics that the true weirdo in all of us only unleashes in the safety of our living rooms with the curtains closed or after a few too many glasses of ‘something stronger’ and delivers them skilfully on stage for all to see. The audience, sometimes in hysterics, sometimes silent with a confused ‘did he just do that’ look on their faces certainly knew they were witnessing something spectacular, the operative word being ‘something’!
Simmons openly admits that some people won’t get this, but I did. It would be remiss to say that I laughed, I didn’t – I giggled, I giggled uncontrollably like a toddler making fart noises for the first time. If you think the world is a little too serious or you just want to see a man wear bread on his feet, then you need to see this show. With a rating from ‘yeah, nah give it a miss’ to ‘nah, nah, yeah check this show out’ for me ‘Sam Simmons – Problems’ is a definite nah, nah, yeah check this show out! I’m sure you’ll love this outrageously funny mind dump as much as I did.
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Sam Simmons is a comedy maniac and last night he brought his ‘Problems’ to the Herald Theatre.
Remember that stuff you did when you where eight and you thought it was hilarious, well he does that and turns out it’s still hilarious. Simmons knows this isn’t your usual show, ”Just relax, it’s only gonna get weirder” he says to reassure his audience ten minutes into his hour-long show.
Silly songs, mimes, crazy illustrations and word combines are just a few of his jokes in his NZ International Comedy Festival Show. The show is an effervescent, riotous and absurd spectacle from beginning to end. Without wanting to give any spoilers, Simmons uses many props for many means and this is a truly multi media show with voice over to boot, while the whole show is also musically scored. Simmons yells frenziedly back to his AV guru (who must be a multi-tasking wizard) when lights need to be dimmed or volume turned up and he also pauses for interludes where he can review himself during the show, and ponder over how it’s going thus far. Turns out it went very well indeed!
Problems is a breath of fresh air. Although some may find his antics a little out there, it was obvious within minutes that we were going to have a good time in the company of this comedian who has been spreading his own personal brand of madness all around the world. His seemingly anarchic show must in fact be a result of much preparation. Preparation that allows the audience to just sit back and let it all sink in, one food prop at a time.
If you enjoy The Mighty Boosh, or saw Doctor Brown in Befrdfgth at last years festival, then this may just be right up your alley. The show is a random patchwork of hilarious chaos but don’t worry, there’s a message in there somewhere too. One not to be missed!
Sam Simmons – Problems runs 28 – 30 April at 8:30 in the Herald Theatre.
Ok. He comes on stage with a bag of bread rolls and two large bread loaves. Declares he wants to ‘wear bread slippers’ and proceeds to stuff his feet into the bread loaves, throws the remaining bread rolls into the crowd and then pulls out two ping pong paddles and yells at the crowd to throw the rolls back while he hits them back. Pure genius! You. Must. See. This. Show!
See more at: http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/04/26/5-star-comedy-preview-the-old-mout-cider-comedy-gala/#sthash.CLGLjTR6.dpuf
Well, THAT certainly wasn't what I was expecting! And thanks to Sam Simmons, my asthma has now flared back up from laughing so hard!
Not that I'm complaining. The Comedy Fest is certainly there to give us a good wheeze and I'm pleased I took the punt on this, even if his publicity material suggested we were in for not much more than an absurd stand-up act.
If you've seen Tim & Eric's Awesome Show! Great Job! or The Mighty Boosh you'll have the beginnings of what to expect from this high-energy, prop laden hour of lunacy from a suburban Australian who may or may not be facing a midlife crisis right in front of us. It doesn't have quite the colour, 8-bit animations or poo-humour of the aforementioned TV shows, but Simmons peppers his eccentric viewpoint with nutty observations, awkwardly sexy gags and non sequiturs aplenty that would make those overseas shows blush.
He's already set up and lightly cajoling us in the foyer when we arrive, and on stage has a shopping trolley full of surprises to hurl at us, usually literally. He hits us with some stupid trivia to get us warmed up, before launching into the show proper in a terrifically oddball introduction about a dream he had of a spaceman delivering a box of Old El Paso taco mix when he was a child.
He's dressed in a too-tight belly-revealing offensive tee shirt, short-shorts and stripey socks and the format of the hour is letters written to Sam from various people with various problems of various degrees of ridiculousness. But that's not all there is too it.
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