Tripod @ Brisbane Comedy Festival 2016 Review

When you’ve been writing comedy songs for two decades, you’re bound to have a lot of music that doesn’t get the airtime it deserves.

For Australian musical comedy royalty, Tripod, there are 101 songs fighting for attention. When those 101 songs have found homes on such varied platforms as ‘Hey, Hey It’s Saturday!’, albums, a smattering of musicals, and even ‘Assassin’s Creed’, there’s a high likelihood that even the most devoted fan has missed something.

Tripod has released a book of sheet music this year, optimistically named ‘101 Tripod Hits’, but that doesn’t help the musically illiterate among us. Clearly, a solution is required, one that doubles as a 20th birthday party.

Thankfully, Tripod have found the best, and funniest, way to deal with the notion of a best-of tour: grab a copy of ‘101 Tripod Hits’ and treat the show like a game of bingo, complete with reliance upon a wire bingo cage filled with numbered ping-pong balls.

At the Powerhouse (12 March), and using the cage, each song performed in ‘101 Tripod Hits’ is chosen at random just before it’s played, meaning that no two shows are ever the same.

For the kinder folks, it’s a chance to hear a wealth of forgotten favourites in an unpredictable night of laughs. For the crueller, it’s a chance to see how well Tripod can ad-lib their way through the infinite potential for disaster. Both are fun options, truth be told, and audiences are loving it.

Some attended every show at the Brisbane Comedy Festival with their own bingo cards, hoping for an elusive win. Others have returned with their own ping-pong balls to lob at the stage. The unpredictability of the show, and what you’ll see, seems to be a big drawcard for festival goers.

It takes a lot of talent to ad-lib a show like this, even if it doesn’t always run perfectly. If you’re looking for a polished, well-rehearsed show, this isn’t it. It would be impossible to remember 101 song introductions, let alone the infinite number of segues between potential songs.

Instead, audiences are treated to a chance to see three of Australia’s most well-known comic talents testing their skills, and their memories. Tripod have been hitting the stage hard for two decades now, but they’re certainly not slowing down, and it’s clear that Yon, Scod and Gatesy still love their work.

Though it’s nice to get a chance to remember the various songs left gathering dust in our memories over the years, it’s also fascinating to hear more about the songs and to find new sources of music to enjoy.

If you’re a fan of Tripod, or a fan of musical comedy in general, it’s a wild night of comedy you really don’t want to miss.
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