The Durham Revue: 2013

Thu 17th – Sat 19th January 2013

reviews

Patrick John Callaghan-Pace

at 16:46 on 18th Jan 2013

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The Durham Review is back in its new form for what looks to be a promising 2013.

As could perhaps be expected with a debut comedy show, it did begin slowly with the audience unsure about their new entertainers. However, all doubts as to the entertainment value of this group of young enthusiasts disappeared shortly after the opening act.

The new troupe connected well, complimenting one another as a genuine ensemble; each individual’s strengths were clearly played to full advantage. I speak specifically of the family games night where all characters were portrayed brilliantly in each actor’s own unique way.

There was evidence of some real comic talent, as the humour was often topical and witty. The show, to the credit of Durham Review, was peppered with the occasional fresh breath of some ridiculous humour, mainly consisting of outburst of “Boris” in mis-fitting situations. The audience laughed uncontrollably during the scenes of the misunderstood massage, the not so secret agent briefing and the ludicrous dinner scene.

However, the good did come with the bad and some of the jokes that fell short to begin with weren’t helped out by some moments of poor delivery. Nevertheless, this is something that I am confident that the group will overcome as the year progresses.

No one watching would deny that there was room for improvement. Whilst a point of the new show was to have new sketches, I would challenge one of the members to step into the shoes of the Durham Review of years gone by and attempt a short stand up sketch to add some variety to the type of humour. The addition of an MC role directing the night’s affairs and warming up the audience would not go amiss. Also, I do not think it unreasonable to suggest that ‘Durham Review’ include some Durham related humour. We all know we are a ridiculous lot who practically beg to be made fun of, I would suggest go for it, and don’t be afraid to be outrageous. Lastly, a couple of the endings to sketches were a key area of difficulty, often dragging on past the punch line.

The point of a comedy show is to make the audience laugh. As a member of the audience myself and surrounded by many others it was very clear that everyone had a good time. The atmosphere was, at times, electric, where no one could help but laugh at the comedians who were clearly having such a good time themselves up on stage. In conclusion, a commendable first attempt from the new members of Durham Review and I think that it is fair to say that this is one group to keep an eye open for in 2013.

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