BY JEAN WEST
Slapstick, goofy, charming and fun, The Artist, is a confident piece of physical theatre with truly masterful qualities.
Keen to make a painting, award-winning New Zealander, Thom Monckton, is thwarted at every turn as he tries to gather his materials and begin the creative process.
He wrestles with some wood, loses his tools, gets physically caught up with a stretch of canvas and even nails his sock to the frame.
But he persists with his baffling madcap antics, in the name of artistic expression and reels us in with his clowning finesse and deft timing.
Back-bending, gymnastic, double-jointed stunts, moon-walking, silly dancing, and a face full of expression bring a cartoonish joy to the one hour piece, and some audience members are laughing so loud it almost sounds canned!
Monckton is a natural with the whimsy and observation of Stan Laurel, clowning around with his props and making the show his own.
This has been an unreserved hit at the fringe and will surely tour the world with its transferable charm!