It’s truly hard to label a show that’s part-comedy, part-drama, part-mystery, part-satire. Perhaps the most confusing part however … the lead is a monkey.
Chimp Cop is a satirical play, aimed at parodying a range of ‘70s TV cop shows. The storyline follows a cop who calls himself ‘Chimp Cop’ (why? Is he actually a chimp? We’re not really sure), as he aims to solve a murder, meeting a variety of strange characters along the way.
Timothy Clark – Chimp Cop – was strong in the role, with great comedic timing. Although his lines were often spoken a bit too quickly, he delivered an impressive performance in this four-person show. Ben and Rosie Vernel, who portrayed a range of characters, had highlights throughout the show, but were lacking the confidence required to deliver convincing characters. A true highlight of the show however, was Adam Knox. Adam delivered a strong performance through a multitude of characters, giving each one their own twist, and monopolising the stage with each appearance. One of his most memorable performances involved pink and chocolate doughnuts, and their relationship with a banana…
The technical side, however, left a lot to be desired. Lighting cues were often missed, sound cues would come in late – or not at all (in the case of the silent gunshot!), requiring the actors have to improvise (which, to their credit, they did quite well, making light of the whole thing). The addition of video highlights was an interesting twist and added to the interest of the show, while the quality of the voice-over left a lot to be desired.
The minimal set worked well on the Butterfly Club’s compact stage, however additional props (instead of invisible ones) would have helped support the audience’s imagination.
Overall, this show has been well-written, with a range of classic jokes and adult humour leaving the audience, at times, in fits of laughter. If you have a free hour in the city, I’d encourage you to make your way to Carson Place and support this young performing group and check out the monkey business!