Posted by Lachlan Baynes
20. Apr, 2017
Magical duo Lawson Reeves and Josh Staley bring their unique form of illusion and improvisation to this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival with 2 Guys, 1 Magic Show, No Idea. The central premise of the show is relatively simple: the pair have a certain number of tricks they are prepared to perform and the audience chooses which tricks and in what order they are performed. This leaves the potential for every night and every performance to be, to a degree, different from the one before.
If you are someone who is not a fan of audience participation then this will not be the show for you. In a way, Reeves and Staley rely on the audience to drive the show forward and this creates many memorable interactions between the performers and audience members. It is here where the comedy shines, in the organic interactions that allowed the pair to show off their wit. Their room at the Butterfly Club is a small and intimate space, meaning building a good relationship with the audience is all the more important. The comedy was less successful when it was part of their routine with many of their jokes not landing or feeling too predictable. However their ability to run with the punches when a joke fell flat and turn it around quickly showed their natural gift for improv.
Similarly, the pair didn’t seem as confident or as comfortable on stage at first with them stumbling over a few jokes and lines. But as the show progressed and the room warmed up they did seem to the find their feet and hit their groove, becoming bolder and, as a result, funnier.
Yet this show would be nothing if the magic was not suitably impressive. And in this they succeeded. Without giving too much away, the pair performed a variety of tricks ranging from card tricks to mentalism and mind reading, amongst others. While some were merely amusing, others seemed genuinely impossible and like any good magic show, these will have you scratching your head and begging to be told how.
2 Guys, 1 Magic Show, No Idea
The Butterfly Club, Carson Place, off Little Collins Street, Melbourne
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