(l-r) Shane Dundas and David Collins, (rear) Doug Baynes. Photo – Gavin D Andrew

The umbies are mixing it up this time around. You don’t need to use your imagination to see the whimsical worlds and props they create. Now they have technology. Including two green screen backdrops, a lot of cameras and one huge viewing screen. This is where the combination of creativity and special effects come together to deliver a fun, light-hearted, jam packed hour of comedy power.

Many comedians have been delving into personal struggles on stage, revealing truth and darkness which in turn, evokes both tears and laughs from the audience. This is not one of those shows. You may cry, but it will definitely be from laughter.

The Distraction is what happens when two adults who never grew up stole the keys to the Arts Centre and are having the time of their lives with all the equipment. It starts with cheeky messages on the big screen as Fever Ray’s “If I had a heart” comes through the sound system and a buzz washes over the still house lit engaged audience. For 30 years David Collins has been delighting audiences with his deep and connected facial expressions. Now there is two of them, one on screen and one live. Imagine if they like… made out with each other?

Then there is the self-proclaimed bald one, Shane Dundas who is holding the detached arm of a baby doll with his own face contorted in front of a camera making cooing sounds. You look up at the big screen and see the magic unfold as Shane's dome doubles as the babies’ crown with his little arm reaching out of the cot. This particular section of the show is something to remember and delivers an attention to craft and specificity rarely found in comedy shows.

It ends with the best Steve Jobs cameo to date, a truck load of babies and a few audience on-screen fatalities. This latest offering from The Umbilical Brothers has the pair juxtaposing self-deprecating rough and (unrehearsed) comedy and technically beautiful well-developed sketches, primed for viewing.

Big shout out to the onstage tech guy who does not seem to be listed on the links but really carried the show!

Event details

alist.com.au presents
The Distraction
The Umbilical Brothers

Venue: Fairfax Studio | Arts Centre Melbourne, 100 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne VIC
Dates: 25 March – 17 April 2021
Tickets: from $35
Bookings: www.artscentremelbourne.com.au

Brisbane QPAC from 27 April 2021



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