Best of Fringe Variety

Best of Fringe Variety 2020★★★

Motley & Mac. Gluttony, Rymill Park. 18 Feb 2020

Motley & Mac is an Australian performing arts company created by American Tim Motley and Irishman Patrick McCullagh. Over the last six years they have hosted Prohibition, Best of Kids’ Fringe, and this revue, Best of Fringe Variety at the Adelaide Fringe.


Even with introductions but without a program or even a running sheet, it’s difficult to record who each of the entertainers are – certainly a handout would serve as a reference for attendees to look up and book those performers whom they want to see more of.

The show began with American Tymisha Harris’s channeling of black American Josephine Baker, an international cabaret superstar whose star had faded until Harris and company conceived of Josephine, on offer in the Fringe. Harris is a compelling chanteuse and her two numbers were an exciting exposition. The magician and master of ceremonies showed some wizardry with playing cards, and later he managed to pick which extended hand of an audience member held a coin - four times in a row - just like he said he would. He even tells us how he does it. I did the math – there is only a 6.25% chance of doing so. His comic and relaxed manner makes me want to see more of him. The acrobatic acts ranged from “When am I supposed to clap?” to “OMG, that’s amazing!” A balancing act involving a precariously placed dozen martini glasses took the breathe away. What goes through my mind is how much time must be spent rehearsing to earn a few shekels. High-energy hoopologist Anna Fisher passed Public Relations 101 and handed out flyers after the show for her Phat Cab Club circus cabaret in this year’s Fringe.

Best of Fringe Variety is on every night except Mondays until 15 March, and every show is different, depending on which Fringe artists want to entertain and/or promote their full-length shows, so it’s not necessarily the best, as advertised, but hopefully some of the best. And you can’t possibly have the full mix of lollies every night; the burlesque acts, comedians, illusionists, tap dancers, strong men, bubble sculptors and puppeteers cited in the blurb were absent in the show I saw on opening night. So life is like a box of chocolates.


David Grybowski


When: 19 Feb to 15 Mar

Where: Gluttony, Rymill Park


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