FRINGE REVIEW: Sold-Out House Launches Weird Comedy

Monday Magazine's Theatre critic reviews Morgan Cranny's Vasily Djokavich

Morgan Cranny gets the gold star for originality with this humorous look at comedy about Russia.  I mean, what can possibly be funny about this grim state with its unpleasant dictator?  But somehow he and Mike Delacourt have written an amusing, hour-long commentary, delivered in Cranny’s lugubrious style, which produced smiles and laughter from its packed first-night audience.

Vladimir Poutin’s decidedly unsmiling face dominates the stage; Cranny keeps referring to this ‘democratically-elected president-for-life’ which gets a laugh every time.  He also calls himself ‘Russia’s #1state-appproved comedian, and describes what he had to go through to end up with this title.  The dark humour is in the details, for example getting shot if you don’t succeed in the career the state has chosen for you.

One interlude has Cranny inviting a person onto the stage (must be a certain age and gender) to participate in a quiz, the prize being a shot of vodka for each correct answer.  He calls the drink ‘hard Russian water.’  Don’t ask why this is hilarious, I guess you have to be there.

Vasily Djokavich — Russia’s #1 State Approved Comedian plays at the Downtown Community Centre, 755 Pandora Street for 5 more performances during the Fringe Festival:

Friday August 25 at 10:00 pm

Saturday, August 26 at 3:00 pm

Monday August 28 at 7:15 pm

Friday Sept 1 at 10:45 pm

Sunday September 3 at 2:45 pm

Tickets $11. Don’t forget your Fringe Button!

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