Peter Michael Marino: Show Up
- Katharine Gemmell
- 6 August 2018
Loveable solo improv that's cut with sadness
Peter Michael Marino's Show Up is a dizzying and intimate hour of improvisation and audience participation that touches on heavy subjects like social anxiety, personal journeys and failure. The premise of the show is based on a belief that if you show up you've already won, making the set feel somewhat like a therapy session.
Before the improv begins, Marino shares warm anecdotes from his life, like the time he wrote the flop Blondie musical (bizarrely based on a Madonna film), the depression and anxiety that followed this failure, and the stand-up show that spawned from his break-down. It's then over to the audience to share their life stories by reacting to cues such as work, family and addiction. Once the answers come through, Marino uses the prompts to create a brand new life story, with a little help from his crowd as stage managers.
This jovial improv is spirited and natural, but there are moments when the jokes about mental illness become extremely sombre (like when Marino lists names of entertainers who have suffered). Overall though it's a fun hour, with each audience in the run getting a completely different experience.
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House, until 26 Aug (not 15, 22) 4.45pm, donations.