C'est La Vegan
- Kirstyn Smith
- 15 August 2017
A smart and savvy hour about food, philosophy and mental health
You may well be wary of seeing a show that so boldly wears its colours on its sleeve: 'how can you tell if someone is a vegan?' and all that. Dave Chawner's playful herbivorous title belies a humble, thought-provoking hour. Having lived with anorexia, Chawner has a complicated history with food; indeed his 2015 show was about that journey. He speaks candidly and honestly about mental health and how failing to maintain control over his food meant also losing his identity.
He is smart, but not condescending, citing his favourite philosopher as Spinoza due to his belief that everything in the universe is made of the same substance manifest in different ways. It's with this attitude in mind that Chawner tries to live his life.
Throughout, he is at pains to stress that he's not trying to preach or convert, and self-deprecation is more prevalent than barbs aimed outwards. The gags come thick and fast as he worries over what he can and can't do, use or eat as a fairly new vegan, and realises that the only true vegan is a dead one. It's a shame that Dave Chawner might miss out an audience because of some people's perception of the 'preachy vegan'. This show is a gem and deserves everyone's attention.
Laughing Horse @ The Counting House, until 27 Aug (not 25), 7pm, free.