The year is 2025, Damian Cowell presents his new musical Eurovision Ruined My Life – the Musical. Okay, you got me. I’m not some psychic wench who gazed into my crystal ball to predict the future – but this is the basis for Damian Cowell’s Hara-Karaoke (Eurovision not the wench – although, if anyone could pull that off, I’m sure Damian could!) playing now at The Forum as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival.
Me and Natalie from Extra Large As Life headed to the show last Friday night. Natalie, a fan of TISM (an acronym of This Is Serious Mum) since its early days. Me, a newcomer, who only found out about TISM just over a month ago. How is it that I came to miss the genius of TISM during their existence? Simple; my teenage self would not have been aware of anything unless it graced the pages of Smash Hits Magazine. Yes. My 80s were about Fat Cat, my 90s spent pining over prepubescent long haired-boys and the 00s, well, I wasn’t much cooler then either.
But before stop reading because you’ve come to realise how totally uncool I was – and maybe (definitely!) still am! Now that I’ve popped my TISM, Damian Cowell and MICF cherries, respectfully, there’s no turning back – I’m hooked and loving it!
It’s so wickedly creative that something so small (if you consider 15,000 people signing the petition “small”) as the notion to get TISM to perform at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest to be inspiration for the show. It’s nice to get a break from the monotony of “your momma” jokes, have you ever noticed this and fat dudes in Hawaiian shirts bitching about how they can’t get none.
It’s more than just a comedy show – it’s an infusion of spoken-comedy, comedic-songs set to disco beats (some off his latest album, Disco Machine), theatrics, slide shows and more. I’m not one to go into details as I believe the best way to approach a show is to go in fresh and unspoiled with no idea what to expect except to be ready to laugh at loud. I do warn you, be prepared for an hour of resisting the urge to dance in your seat and to have the catchy tunes stuck in your head for weeks to come! For me, it’s currently Fuck, I’m Dead. Although, my love for Jesus Christ Superstar and my Barista-sister, Jesus Barista Superstar is a close second.
One things for certain, if there is an afterlife, Damian should prepare himself for heading down south due to the amount of blasphemies and obscenities that make this show oh so great! It’s creative, witty, stripped back and you really get the sense that you’re witnessing a comedic genius at work. And Damian can sing – really sing – not just in a comedic way and his dance moves left me green – because as a girl in my 20s, even I can’t dance as good as he can. He says he’s a shit-dancer, but I think that’s only part-modesty, part-truth and part-performance.
The only drawback would be the room itself. I’m torn between whether the show would be best with no chairs allowing the audience to dance along or if it plays better with a seated audience. I can’t quite make up my mind; still, this doesn’t hinder ones enjoyment of the show. Although, if you’re reading this and have yet to see the show, sit to the right-facing side of the stage if you can, this will enhance your experience and make you a better lover, or so I hear, I sat to the left.
Don’t spend your $20-$25 on four coffees at Starbucks or the new Nickelback CD (teehee), if you’re only going to go see one show this comedy season or you want to pop your MICF cherry like moi (it only hurts a little at the start and then you start to enjoy it – promise), go see Hara-Karaoke. You won’t regret it. Although, if you’ve got an extra $20 to spare, buy Damian Cowell’s Disco Machine too because after seeing the show, I guarantee you the temptation will be there. Damian methinks a merchandise-stand would do you well, sir.
Damian Cowell’s Hara-Karaoke is playing at The Forum from April 7-19 2015.