Dave Callan: A Little Less Conversation

If you fit into the overlappy bit of a Venn diagram of people who like dance, people who like comedy and people who like men who look a bit like Vikings, this show is for you. If you fit into a single one of those circles, this show is for you. If you don’t like the sound of any of this but have had a bad day, this show is for you.

If the dancers can better maintain their composure throughout (and let’s face it, they have their job cut out for them sharing a stage with Callan) this will further enhance the contrast between professional and ambling buffoon.

Dave Callan’s latest offering dissects the history of dance crazes. He starts the show with his arm in a sling but after a brief moment of panic, not a single one of us believed he was really injured, as he launched into a lopsided medley of the YMCA, the Macarena, the Hokey Pokey, and other dances best performed with two arms.

It’s easy to laugh with (but mostly at) Callan, who has an affable, disarming performance style. His dance style can only be described as unique. It’s truly impressive how much choreography he has learnt for this show and flanked by two lithe, lycra-clad back-up dancers really plays up the hilarious incongruity of a bearded, hairy, sweaty man attempting to out-do the likes of Beyoncé.

As well as taking us through dance styles of the last century (the 80s are a particular highlight) Callan educated on when the pelvic thrust is appropriate and when it isn’t, and offered helpful suggestions for air instrumentals when dancing.

With back-up dancers JR and Kirrily, Callan juggles multiple props and costume changes. There are a few occasions where timing is off, or where minor mistakes occur because the performers are having so much fun. If the dancers can better maintain their composure throughout (and let’s face it, they have their job cut out for them sharing a stage with Callan) this will further enhance the contrast between professional and ambling buffoon.

He’s uncool, unfit, and sweats profusely, which makes this show all the more satisfying, but I have a sneaking suspicion that – when dancing appropriately – Callan secretly knows how to move. The finale proves that and is worth the price of the ticket alone.

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

From twerking to the twist, ballroom to Beyoncé, Dave Callan is the Gandalf of dance off. With the help of two backup dancers and a fully loaded iPod, this deceptively agile Viking will take you on a journey through the ages of dance like you’ve never seen it before in this 2013 Fringe sell-out. ‘If you're looking for a break from punchlines and one-liners, Callan’s absurd hour of dance moves will have you in stitches’ **** (Herald Sun, Mebourne). ‘Thoroughly entertaining...the gruff Irishman is quite the mover’ (Chortle.co.uk). 2013 Adelaide Fringe Best Comedy Commendation.

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