Fringe Review: 'talk dirty to me' is Utterly Entertaining
I’m not usually the kind of person who goes Fringe crazy. In fact, I hardly ever get myself to go to Fringe shows. But when you have just met an English person on the plane and you’ve told them that you will show them cool things in Perth, you have something of a moral obligation to take advantage of Perth’s most packed summer festival.
So I found myself in the Stables Theatre for talk dirty to me, put on by the Cutting Room Floor. You could tell that there is a buzz around this show from the masses of Fringe artists lining up outside hoping to get a free seat. If the performers of Fringe are excited about a show, it’s a pretty safe bet. And they are right to be excited by this wonderful piece of theatre by Chris Brain and Casey Elder.
Sam (Reilly O’Byrne-Inglis) and Ash (Owen Lane) come together over messages, but their personal needs dominate their burgeoning relationship. The show also features Teig Sadhana whose soliloquys present a man who is willing to do anything he can to become internet famous, wanted, loved and desired. He uses the apps to fulfil his loneliness. Rian Howlett rounds out the cast, whose ominous presence sticks with you long after they stop talking dirty to you.
It was the couple who I most identified with. Dating apps are incredibly easy to become addicted to; using it for a sexual thrill is common. But equally, it is easy to become emotionally reliant on these seemingly base relationships that you create. Ash is shown as struggling with his sexual desires, and wanting more from his messaging with Sam.
Imbued with that white male entitlement, he angrily reacts when Sam refuses to meet him. ‘How can she refuse after we’ve had cyber-sex?’ Using, but refusing to be used, he demands she meet him. Sam, is something of a manic pixie dream girl. On and off, with a mysterious personal life that begs to be investigated she becomes hopelessly entwined with the confident Ash. But the twist will get you.
It wouldn’t be a show by The Cutting Room Floor without their signature movement pieces that are highly symbolic and almost always a little sexually suggestive. Howlett comes to life as the characters struggle with him, and try desperately to master him without success.
At first I thought that the music fade after these pieces was too abrupt, but as the English girl later said to me, ‘that is life’. Indeed by cutting the music, almost immediately, you are reminded of the thrill of the Tinder game which almost always ends on the sudden with no warning.
But this show isn’t just about Tinder or Grindr. talk dirty to me is more than that. It shines the spotlight on how we live and increasingly how we love. It captures the hopeless desperation that we have all felt while browsing dating apps, trying to find the unattainable, the impossible. This show strikes that perfect balance of making you laugh, and making you think. You won’t be disappointed.
8.5 out of 10 really good Tinder dates
Dates: Wed 27th Jan - Sun 31st Jan 2016 @ 9pm at The Stables, Perth Cultural Centre
Tickets: Available online from fringeworld.com.au