Review: The Moa Show at Gilded Balloon Teviot

Written and performed by award winning actor and writer Jamie McCaskill, The Moa Show is a full hour of crazy. Nothing can prepare you for what you are about to experience – not even this review.

McCaskill breaks the fourth wall from the start. He begins by introducing himself and getting to know his audience, making the whole set up feel personal and non theatrical, right up until the smoke machine comes into play. Our journey begins at The Junction, a pub in New Zealand, where we are introduced to our main three characters, all played by McCaskill. First up is Henry, a chirpy old man whose deepest regret is not having said goodbye to his passing wife. Second is Brian, a middle aged man who loves nothing more than beer, and secretly yearns to have a better relationship with his sons. Last but certainly not least we are introduced to Carl Michael – a stallion of a man who dreams of becoming and living his life as his spirit animal.

When it comes to explaining how these characters find themselves in a strange world ruled by The Mighty Moa – an extinct bird native to New Zealand – things get a bit unclear. The whole thing seems a little Alice in Wonderland on a low budget. Although McCaskill should be commended for his high energy, physicality, and ability to swiftly transform from character to character, the jokes and use of New Zealand slang make this original show a bit better suited to Kiwi audiences than Edinburgh ones. Nevertheless, McCaskill’s excellent physical comedy is universal.

The Moa Show, Gilded Balloon Teviot, Aug 1-27 Aug (not 14), 10.45pm 

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