The hype for Nina Conti is huge. She is performing in a massive and sold out venue, walking in feels akin to walking into the olympic stadium. The atmosphere of the audience creates a huge sense of occasion and excitement. Nina Conti’s show actually brilliantly plays against this grand atmosphere. She has an incredibly chilled out and casual demeanour, as if she is just performing to a few friends in her living room. She invites us into her ‘workshop’ and tells us that the show is ’95% improvised.’ This is probably accurate considering the amount of times she laughs at her own jokes. From the get go we feel fully immersed in Conti’s world and are on board with whatever surreal thing she throws at us next.
I honestly cannot think of one person who wouldn’t love Nina Conti.
Nina is sweet and charming, looks lovely and well behaved and then all of a sudden these incredible and extremely rude voices explode out of her. Anyone familiar with Nina Conti will know she is a talented ventriloquist, but I almost couldn’t believe how she was managing to improvise a conversation between three different characters and herself, in three different voices. Not only is she hilarious, but also unbelievably talented. From a leery scotsman, to a high-pitched eastern european woman, Conti creates characters with simply her voice and a few props. It’s hard to explain, but the effect of this is possibly the funniest thing I have ever seen in my life.
Her jokes are razor sharp and self-aware, from her infamous monkey ironically quipping: “stop pretending it’s not your idea anyway” to laughing at herself for trying to move a chair and failing. She really responds to the audience, inviting them onstage and into her playful world of mayhem, and seems genuinely excited to meet every person that she interacts with. I won’t say exactly what the audience participation involves, because the surprise is hysterical.
Nina Conti is a master ventriloquist and a master of comedy. I laughed so much I couldn’t breathe, as did the entire audience. I honestly cannot think of one person who wouldn’t love Nina Conti.