And now, something to entertain the kids these school holidays.
Meet George, ‘Cleaner to the Stars’ and explore his world of theatre, life and cleaning up after the show, features costumes, props and laughter.
Anthony Verity is a talented and convincing mime, complete with strong sound effects, exaggerated movements, slapstick humour and he’s a pretty good dancer as well. There are poo jokes and shark stories, versions of Swan Lake and an invisible magic show; it’s all a ball of fun but it’s a little high level for the kids. George the cleaner sprays and dusts the kids and prances through the audience, cleaning them up, dolling up back rubs and dressing them up with the props. His use of signs to navigate the show is fun and well thought out, and the lack of audience participation from the kids doesn’t seem to get him down or effect his buoyant energy, as he picks on the adults and almost pleads with the kids to get involved, whispering them the answers and encouraging them. As a whole performance, this show is fun and Verity is definitely an accomplished performer, but his audience just aren’t on the same page as him.
Most of the laughter of the show comes from the accompanying adults, who jump right in to the show trying to lead the kids into it and the interaction, but the kids take a lot longer to warm up and respond to Verity’s brand of humour. He spends a lot of time trying to get down on their level and engage, but this audience is a shy one and they don’t respond well to the mime, forcing him to actually have a bit of a chat to them, when his show was aiming to tell 13 stories without words. Maybe the kids just don’t get mime, or maybe they need another performer to bounce off and help them navigate what’s going on, but they don’t get all the levels of nuance and subtext that has been put into the show- and there has been a lot put in.
Like all good kids shows there’s a little bit for everyone, with most of the musical jokes and musical mash up part designated towards adults, with the James Bond references and theme, while the kids get entertained by the crazy spy guy running around.
For a one man show, this is fun but very ambitious. It’s a lot for Verity to keep up his energy and portray all of the different roles (which he manages) and a lot for the audience of 5 to 7 year olds to take in- they don’t necessarily know the flip of a bandana means you’ve completely changed character, and they don’t know what a cancan is, despite Verity performing a good one.