'...and the audience
(that's you guys)
sit still and silent...
...tears streaming down your faces.'
Chris Williams attempts to resurrect the tradition of the ‘double-act’ as a solo performer. Taking inspiration from Morecambe & Wise, as well as ideas from comedian Andy Kaufman and the Greek myth of Narcissus. The show explores what happens when one half of a ‘double-act’ disappears, deserts or even dies. Chris Williams sets out on a series of simple, yet ill-fated attempts to reconstruct the double-act for a solo-performer (himself). The result is a piece of work that is not only funny and entertaining but that challenges perceptions of what comedy should be; of what a double-act should be; of what theatre should be. It is a show full of all the things you wouldn’t expect to find in a double-act - a fight, a load of booze, a long drawn out death scene, and most importantly, only one performer.
In researching the work, as well as watching endless clips and films of old double-act routines, Chris performed at a number of unusual (and occasionally unsuitable) venues and events in order to try out various unfamiliar skills as an entertainer. Inspired by the sheer bravery of intrepid comedian Andy Kaufman, Chris has told inappropriate jokes at comedy nights, sung badly at open-mic evenings and acted out his own long and painful death in an underground music venue. what do you think of it so far? was the result of a year of exploration and experiments into the world of the solo performer, drawing inspiration from the great double-acts of the past and from Chris Williams’s own hopelessly futile efforts to recreate their magic as a solo performer.
Devised & Performed by Chris Williams
Special thanks to Morecambe & Wise, Andy Kaufman and Larry David
The Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster, 2009
Leicester Square Theatre, London
The Space, London
Chelsea Theatre, London
Square Chapel Arts Centre, Halifax
Pulse Festival, Ipswich
Forest Fringe, Edinburgh
Arts and Humanities Research Council
Lancaster Institute for Contemporary Arts