Bromance – Underbelly

imageUnderbelly is a UK-based live entertainment company that runs several festivals and events across the country. Underbelly has grown to include the Udderbelly and London Wonderground festivals in London, The Comedy Hullabaloo in Stratford-Upon-Avon, as well as an ever-growing programme at Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Edinburgh’s Christmas.

The show Bromance is performed by the Barely Methodical Troupe (BMT) – an experimental acrobatic circus company, fusing Hand-to-Hand and Cyr Wheel with a through line of innovative dynamic movement. The company consists of three talented males, Louis Gift, Beren D’amico and Charlie Wheeler, who all have incredible circus skills in their own right. The combination of technical ability with their stylish flare and showmanship is the defining feature of the troupe. BMT’s award winning show Bromance explores the role of male companionship and its limits.

The company cleverly utilises pre-recorded material, all about handshaking and the symbolism of what, and how, two hands meeting can mean. This is the first instance that we see how innovative and creative as a company BMT are as this recording instantly leads into the first moments of comedy of intricate choreography that impresses the audience throughout. From then on the use of pre-recorded material is what alludes the audience as to what the next scene is going to be.

The main highlight of the show came from the boys’ exceedingly breath-taking acrobatic skills, performing skills that British level gymnasts execute. Pair skills such as reverse to long arm handstand and a very impressive full turn on one arm and group moves such as tuck back re-catch on platform and three high. This impressive level of spectacle provided from the boys had audience members gasping, covering their eyes and wooping non-stop.

The show is cleverly constructed from start to finish varying in tension levels throughout, ensuring that audience members aren’t kept on the edge of their seats the entire time, otherwise a few may have a heart attack!? I highly recommend you all go and see this refreshingly dazzling piece of theatre before it flies off to the Edinburgh Fringe.

Reviewed by Thomas Yates
Photo: Chris Nash

Bromance is playing at the Underbelly Festival until 19 July 2015. Click here for tickets