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Review: Songs From The End of the World

The end is nigh! Pack your bags, prepare your zombie kits, and make for the hills! But fear not, fellow mortals, because Andrew Finegan is here to help guide you (or at least musically accompany you) through the dark times. He has taken the time and the research to prepare a variety of musical numbers fitting for the end of the world. With a mixture of original tunes, re-interpretations of popular tunes, and even a few mash-ups, Songs From The End Of The World is a fun, quirky cabaret.

The show opened with Finegan sitting amongst the audience strumming on a ukelele. He then broke out into a take on the “Overture” from Schwarz’s Godspell – “Prepare for the end of the world!” – along with a solemn procession down the main walkway. Immediately after this, he manages to flawlessly transition to a fun and fast paced piano number. This strong opening really set the pace for the evening.

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Some of the highlights include a song about deadly diseases coming to “meet” the audience, from the Black Death to the Spanish Influenza, a song about groovy dinosaurs being obliterated; a love tribute to a large star that will collide with the Earth in 2012 and a surprisingly touching ballad about the zombie apocalypse. In between the original numbers were some amusing takes on modern pop songs and even a few mash-ups. Numbers such as “Pyonyang Style” – a hilarious rewording of the famous “Gangnam Style” about Kim Jong-Un certainly were hilarious. The overall show felt long enough to be interesting and worth the money spent on tickets, whilst being short enough not to drag out.

In regards to the nature of the performance, an apt description would be: nerdy and adorkable. This is by no means a negative thing. In fact, this made the show feel more genuine and real. This feel was down to two factors: the first was the costume worn by Finegan, probably inspired by his day job as a librarian: a brown and yellow vest, coiffed hair, thick rim glasses – the whole caboodle. The second contributing factor was the way the show was delivered. Either through a deliberate effort to do so, or just because he was, Finegan came across as slightly awkward, and even messed up a few of the song lines and missed a few notes. Luckily, the mistakes flowed perfectly into the style of the show. Aside from that however, the mistakes actually made the show quite fun, with a nice smattering of audience participation. Whilst it wasn’t overbearing, the occasional sing along and calling out was fun and helped the audience feel much more connected to the performance. The small, intimate atmosphere of the Butterfly Club also contributed to this feeling.

Overall, a fun and funny performance. With some glorious puns, Songs From The End Of The World was funny, fast paced, and very clever. Although it could use a little oiling of the performance wheels – easily done by calming the nerves – it was a very enjoyable show. Mind the nuclear holocaust on the way out please.

Get tickets from the Comedy Festival website.

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By: Aidan Johnson

Born in 1992, in Sydney, raised in Newcastle, and educated in Canberra. Musician - percussion and drums are my forte. I am a historian, a reviewer and a generally relaxed person to be around.

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