New Year out­ing for the boys

Take your man along to see this en­er­getic show; you’ll both be glad you gave it a whirl inthe

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODSHOW - ROBYN CO­HEN

FOR A fun, en­ter­tain­ing night out, Big Boys Don’t Dance at The Kalk Bay The­atre de­liv­ers – there’s fab­u­lous danc­ing and plenty of laughs.

It fea­tures broth­ers Ash­ley and Bradley Searle and is on un­til Jan­uary 8.

In the fes­tive sea­son many of us could do with a lift – and this show has lifts ga­lore – of the dance va­ri­ety.

Big Boys Don’t Dance is di­rected and chore­ographed by Ash­ley’s wife, Vanessa Har­ris. The show came about af­ter the suc­cess of their pro­duc­tion, Love @ First Fight which tracked the story of how they met – more or less.

Har­ris and Ash­ley come from dance and mu­si­cal the­atre back­grounds. He was a fi­nal­ist on So You Think You Can Dance and they put a great deal of danc­ing into Love @ First Fight.

Au­di­ences loved the show – and the dance in par­tic­u­lar.

When it came to do­ing the next in­stal­ment, Har­ris was preg­nant and for ob­vi­ous rea­sons wasn’t in any con­di­tion to leap about on stage. They pulled in Ash­ley’s brother, Bradley ( who also has back­ground in mu­si­cal the­atre, much of it in Joburg) and set about con­jur­ing up some hec­tic dance se­quences.

In Big Boys Don’t Dance, we see the boys get­ting sloshed at Ash­ley’s bach­e­lor party. A strip­per va­mooses with the car – which is owned by Ash­ley’s fu­ture fa­ther-in­law. Then they hear about a dance com­pe­ti­tion with a lot of cash up for grabs. The broth­ers en­ter.

Vanessa says that they use episodes from their lives as nar­ra­tive trig­gers, but em­bel­lish and cook up colour­ful sce­nar­ios.

In real life, there was no strip­per at the bach­e­lor party, ad­mits Ash­ley, but he can’t re­ally re­call much about that night any­way.

The Big Boys script may be thin in places, but it is sim­ply a frame to link the awe­some dance se­quences.

It is breath­tak­ing to watch. The show won an Ova­tion Award at the 2010 National Arts Fes­ti­val in Gra­ham­stown and de­servedly so.

The show is hi­lar­i­ous, with witty al­lu­sions to pop­u­lar cul­ture and re­flec­tions on what it means for men to dance when so­ci­ety at large deems it an un­manly pur­suit. They take the mickey out of pop­u­lar dance films like Dirty Danc­ing and it be­comes part-cri­tique, but very much a cel­e­bra­tion of the genre.

To keep Big Boys fresh, they con­stantly up­date the ma­te­rial, says Har­ris. For in­stance, when they staged the show dur­ing the World Cup, they tossed in the Waka Waka dance. Now the shuf­fle is the dance party num­ber of the mo­ment and that is fea­tured in a big way. It works bril­liantly on the tiny stage of the Kalk Bay The­atre.

As they leap and twirl about, Ash­ley and Bradley just about dance in the au­di­ence’s laps.

There is no show tonight, but there will be a New Year’s Eve show next Satur­day night.

For the New Year’s Eve gig the show be­gins at 9.30pm (on other nights, it starts at 8.30pm and at 7.30pm on Sun­days), but the fes­tiv­i­ties will start ear­lier at 7pm with bub­bly and food. Af­ter the per­for­mance, the party will con­tinue.

Tick­ets for the show on New Year’s Eve cost R360. This in­cludes a pic­nic ham­per and bot­tle of bub- bly or, if you want the grub but don’t want the bub­bly, a ticket will cost R285.

Ex­tra drinks may be pur­chased from the bar, which will be open through­out the night. Tick­ets for the rest of the run cost R95. It is on on se­lected nights un­til Jan­uary at 8.30pm, but 7.30pm on Sun­days.

Big Boys Don’t Dance

HI­LAR­I­OUS: Broth­ers Ash­ley and Bradley Searle’s humour and dance in

will keep you en­rap­tured.

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