REVIEW: Rhys Nicholson: Seminal at Underbelly Bristo Square

At risk of sounding like a middle-aged, tweed wearing theatre critic, this show was an absolute joy from start to finish.

Rhys Nicholson rattles through material at a breakneck pace, and while watching Seminal often feels like watching an untied balloon kamikaze throughout the room, it never fails to amuse.

Telling tales of begrudged glamping trips, cruise ship gigs, makeshift body storage ice cream freezers and a failed attempt at whale watching, Nicholson is so quick off the mark that only action replays would have done some of the quick fire highlights of the show justice. It was obvious some in the crowd were nursing a stitch trying to keep up with his blink and you miss it quips.

An ever present reference point in Seminal is the recent gay marriage vote in Australia and some of the examples of homophobia Nicholson describes were, unsurprisingly, hard to digest at times. However, even this couldn’t pop the balloon still careering through the audience at 100mph, and these heartfelt moments of dialogue worked well, expertly weaved in between the ever present light hearted anecdotes and quick ad-libs.

The art of Nicholson’s craft lies in his sharp and incredibly dry humour, able to raise an unexpected smile on even the most stern faced, shed owning Dads who are sat arms folded in the audience. He’s a valuable addition to the Fringe year after year and an act who must surely be sailing towards the larger stages.

Rhys Nicholson: Seminal, Underbelly Bristo Square, 14-26 Aug, 9.05pm 

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