Harvey, Garvey and The Kane
Exquisitely executed antics delivered with energy and commitment
This article is from 2014.
Three comedians all lacking in dignity / In a darkened room where we lay our scene / From ancient comedy format breaks new sketches / Where new Shakespearean laughs are gleaned.
In a rapid-fire onslaught of superlative sketch comedy Stephen Harvey, Marcus Garvey and Gareth Kane breathe life into the genre, possibly by stealing oxygen from the audience they render breathless with their exquisitely executed antics.
With barely a pause for respiratory recovery between scenes, the trio effortlessly shrug on characters, transforming completely with posture and facial expressions. The conjured scenarios are often domestic or occupational with a few appearances from historical characters, a ghost, an ELO fan and what must surely be one of the last available (funny) jokes about Shakespeare. A particularly successful skit involving an aging boy-band recurs to increasing reward and makes use of the three’s – let’s say – age advantage over younger troupes.
Bringing enough energy and commitment to the stage to gloss over the few weaker sketches, they work with comedy’s familiar structural reversals and subversions, knowing how to twist them just enough to stop short of breaking point. For never was a story of less woe / Than this of sketch comedy referencing ELO.
Underbelly, Bristo Square, 0844 545 8252, until 24 Aug (not 11), 4.55pm, £11-£12 (£9-£10).