The weather outside is frightful. Winter is setting in and the nights are getting darker. Luckily, HOME theatre brings you a winter warmer that will bring even more joy to the Christmas period. Släpstick, a comedic troupe of musicians from Amsterdam, arrive in Manchester with a riotous show that revives the golden age of slapstick comedy for a modern audience. Paying homage to legends of the silver screen, like Laurel and Hardy, their show combines visual comedy with incredible musicianship to create a performance that is uniquely entertaining.
It is hard to find the words to describe how insanely talented all five members of Släpstick are. Each one plays a plethora of musical instruments. Apparently, they play over 100 of them. Wind, brass, percussion, strings – no matter what the instrument, these guys can play it! What is astonishing is that they not only play these instruments, but they also use them to create hilarious comedy. Each of their sketches is timed to comic perfection, showing their incredible skill as performers, not only musicians.
Before the show even starts, the troupe clown about with the audience, and on stage, giving you an inkling that you are in for a chaotic evening. This interaction with the audience continues throughout the show, as we are encouraged to take part in several fairground games. As audience members try to knock down cans with soft balls or use a fishing rod to catch fish, you are transported into a fun fair, hosted by a rapid talking barker. It is incredibly good fun, which the whole audience loved.
The show itself is brilliantly funny, with flying violins, speed-skating ballet dancers, battling buskers and plenty of bust ups. My highlights were the German Barbershop routines, singing songs from Uptown Funk to Bohemian Rhapsody. In German! I have genuinely never seen anything funnier in the theatre than their rendition of ‘Regentropfen fallen auf meinen Kopf’. It made me roar with laughter, and I had tears running down my face. Simply hilarious!
Släpstick is a show full of anarchic amusement that proves that slapstick comedy will never get old. There is no better way to kick-start your Christmas festivities! It is ridiculous fun that the whole family will love.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Släpstick runs at HOME, Manchester until December 22nd.