George Fenn

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Rik Brown goes down The Rabbit Hole in a wonderful night of comedy Improv. Photos by Doug Barry-Martin.

The Rabbit Hole has all the elements of a good improv show. Clear world building. Deft identification of games and playful extension. Dynamic characterisation of characters with complex relationships. Captivating execution.

While most improv relies on a tight cast of improvisers listening to each other and working as a team, this Rabbit Hole is extraordinary in the sense that Melbourne based improviser Rik Brown only has one scene partner; Melbourne based improviser Rik Brown.

The theme of this night’s performance is Donkey; derived from the first letter of an audience members name. Thanks Danielle. Launching into a spoken word poem Rik elaborates of the concept of Donkey before settling into the form of a humble farmer apologetically preparing a donkey for the biggest haul of apples he’s ever scene.

From here Rik elastically bounces from farm to deserted island. Then to an extravagant manor. Then back to the farm. Then to a petri dish. Then someone else. While this certainly sounds confusing, Rik’s characters are so distinct that you always know what you are looking at, and what’s changed since the last time you visited.

As the hour draws to a close, Rik weaves the different threads towards a conclusive dead donkey pile to a riotous applause that you just had to be there for.

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