Date: December 30 2012
Think earworms are harmless? Think again, says Matt Kelly of that anarchic comedy duo the Listies. Those annoying bits of music that get stuck in your head, on repeat for hours - sometimes days - on end are no laughing matter.
''They're parasites that burrow into your brain with the sole purpose of driving you insane,'' he says. ''For example, there's a South Korean earworm currently sweeping the planet turning everyone into crazy people who ride invisible horses.''
''Because of that, our new show will have invisible horse-riding on stage. There will be invisible horse-riding in the audience and on the bus and the train and in the car on the way home.''
Gangnam Style won't be the only hooky little number examined during the Listies' new show, Earworms, which makes its debut in the Sydney Festival.
''Carly Rae Jepsen's Call Me Maybe gets a turn, and there's a song called Bom Bom by an Icelandic group that all the kids are going crazy about,'' Kelly says. ''When I first listened to it, I thought, 'Wow, this song is incredibly annoying'. Two minutes later I was dancing around the rehearsal room saying 'Isn't this fantastic?'''
Kelly and fellow Listie Richard Higgins, are Melbourne-based comics who have largely abandoned the adult comedy circuit to focus on ''kidults''. Their previous shows, The List Operators for Kids do Compooters (Sydney Festival 2012) and More Fun Than A Wii (Sydney Opera House), have been riotous affairs, featuring swarms of tea towel aliens, dirty underpants thrown into the audience (''the kids explode'', Kelly says) and lots of rude noises.
''We try to make theatre that adults enjoy as much as the kids,'' Kelly says. ''We want it to be messy knockabout fun that's a shared experience. A theatre shouldn't be a place parents dump the kids for babysitting and pick them up an hour later.''
Earworms will feel like a chat-show, he says. ''We'll have lots of microphones in the audience so the kids can tell the performers what to do.
''It will be less like theatre and more like an afternoon party with lots of interaction, which the Spiegelent really lends itself to,'' he says.
There's a world-first ''Dads Parade'' and live sound effects. ''We'll have our Master of Foley on stage with us,'' Kelly says. ''He's got lots of gadgets, all sorts of microphones and a gravel pit for walking noises.''
As with previous Listies shows, Earworms will contain no educational content. ''The Listies don't make theatre that feels like homework,'' Kelly says. ''You will learn nothing in this show.''
Well, almost nothing. Kelly hopes Earworms will turn the audience to podcasting. ''We'll be recording each show as a podcast so kids will be able to go home and download the show they attended,'' he says. ''Podcasting is amazing technology. It's like radio but made by cool people you like, who play songs you like, and talk about things you're interested in. We'd love to get kids and families to really start exploring it - and laugh at all our fart jokes.''
Earworms is on at The Famous Spiegeltent, from January 15-19. Tickets $20. Bookings 1300 668 812.
This material is subject to copyright and any unauthorised use, copying or mirroring is prohibited.
[ Canberra Times | Text-only index]