Edinburgh Festival Fringe comedy review: Trygve Wakenshaw: Nautilus, reviewed by The Scotsman’s Claire Smith
Could we be entering the era of the rock and roll mime act? Perhaps.
Since we saw him last, Trygve Wakenshaw has acquired an expensive-looking geometrically cut shock of bright blonde hair.
In between sketches, he leaps into his spotlight and adopts a showbiz attitude and a cheesy grin. He plays with the spotlight throughout the show: trimming it, rolling it around the stage, making it bigger, seeing how tiny he can make himself inside it when it shrinks in size.
It’s such a simple trick but so magical, so delightfully playful. It is just one of the ways this Gaulier-trained New Zealand mime keeps our eyes fixed on him throughout.
Wakenshaw begins with the oldest, corniest joke in the world. But it is a mime version – so we don’t really know what he’s playing at – until it all falls perfectly together.
He has an uncanny knack of transforming himself, becoming a princess, a horse, a butterfly, bashful teenage Jesus and an arrogant stand up comic. In one brilliant section he becomes a member of his own audience, reluctantly coming on to the stage for a bit of humiliation.
Wakenshaw jumps in and out of character – playing two hugely different cowboys who are having a duel. His face, his movements, even his hair changes as he snaps from one personality to another.
It’s a world without limits. Characters can shape shift, inflict violence or tenderness on each other and pop up in each other’s stories.
Wakenshaw leaves his audience slack-jawed with admiration and at the end they rise to their feet for riotous applause.
Pleasance Courtyard Venue 33, run ended
Published in The Scotsman on 29 August 2015
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