Steen Raskopoulos – The Coolest Kid in Competitive Chess

Steen Raskopoulos makes no effort to be cool on stage. This is a wise decision in a show heavily based on audience interaction, as he repeatedly makes the crowd feel comfortable interacting with him in the multiple sketches that require their help. To be as open and friendly towards one’s audience as Raskopoulos is runs the risk of coming off as too affable, but this never happens due to the sharp tone of a lot of the material that he (and his audience helpers) are delivering. It is a difficult balancing act, but Steen Raskopoulos has managed to craft a show that is both inviting and innovative, always keeping the audience guessing as to what’s going to happen next.

Steen Raskopoulos is an accomplished, professional performer with boundless charm and likeability.

The Coolest Kid In Competitive Chess is an intricately structured hour of sketches, improvisational moments and occasional direct audience interaction. Raskopoulos intentionally risks alienating his audience on many occasions by playing sketches initially for pathos rather than laughs so the characters involved can be more satisfyingly funny later on. This gamble pays off entirely, as sketches that may leave audience members scratching their head when they first arrive are paid off perfectly in their reprises.

It is in his audience interaction that Raskopoulos truly excels, mastering an art form so often nobly but failingly attempted to run out the clock in an Edinburgh hour. Here, Raskopoulos truly makes the audience members the stars of the show without ever feeling like they have to perform like one. There is one particular sketch involving an office party and a dance routine that is perhaps the perfect example of audience interaction done right. Raskopoulos always makes sure he’s the one who looks the most embarrassing, meaning the audience are able to feel comfortable going for broke in their contributions. This puts both the surprise performer and the rest of the audience at ease, allowing for an interactive comedy show that achieves that rare thing of not being even slightly uncomfortable to watch.

Steen Raskopoulos is an accomplished, professional performer with boundless charm and likeability. Always willing to put the audience’s enjoyment before his own pride and ego, he is willing to do absolutely anything to make the crowd laugh. In this intricately structured but joyously silly hour of games, sketches and wonderfully bizarre characters, Steen Raskopoulos proves he is unmatched in making himself look stupid to make his audience laugh.

Reviews by Charlie Ralph

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The Blurb

The Barry Award and Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer nominee returns with a brand-new hour of comedy characters and inspired spontaneity. As seen on Top Coppers, Sky's Halloween Shorts and Whose Line is it Anyway? Australia; don't miss the latest show from this gifted and masterful improviser. 'Triple threat of performance, material and charisma. A flawless hour of comedy' ***** (Herald). 'Technically astonishing and emotionally fulfilling' ***** (List). 'An inspired and utterly original stand-up' **** (Sunday Times).

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