Mark Trenwith – Be My Friend: Melbourne International Comedy Festival

Mark Trenwith – Be My Friend: Melbourne International Comedy Festival

Mark Trenwith is all energy in Be My Friend, currently showing at Club F4. His show, a combination of standup and multimedia sketches, explores his decision to one day try and make a new friend. Trenwith keeps up a frenetic pace, reflecting his desperate attempts to be more friendly by any means necessary. Mark hails from Adelaide, where he is involved in the comedy stand-up circuit, as well as being featured on the ABC’s Like It Is and Being Me. This is his first solo Melbourne Comedy Festival show.

The premise of Be My Friend is simple. Having nearly gotten into a drunken fight one night, Trenwith, a slightly built guy, slipped into a funk and became rude and isolated from the world. So he decides to be more friendly towards his fellow man, with hilarious results. Cue a series of multimedia clips through the performance, showing him meeting the public through a number of stunts on the street. These range from hilarious—such as Trenwith scattering rose petals at the feet of passers—to a little bit lame, such as when he dances around people sitting in a café. You can’t fault him for his audacity. He is a genuinely disarming character, so it helps to think that he’s not taking the piss out of unsuspecting members of the public.

The absolute highlight of the show is when Trenwith shows footage of himself entering a hip hop battle. This clip is staunchly ambiguous as to how much of it was set up with the audience complicity, but it is an hilarious scene cleverly put together, even cracking the bewildered and serious hip hop artist that he battles against. Another highlight is Trenwith’s schizophrenic musical closing scene that involves a series of masks of famous faces.

The Club F4 venue is a strange one. With Melbourne’s live venues bursting at the seams with comedy festival acts where audiences are herded in and out according to a vacuum-sealed schedule, it’s not surprising that venues usually reserved for live music acts—or no acts at all—are being used. Club F4 has bar, so it took some clever coaxing at the start by Trenwith to bring everyone to the front of the room. Mark’s show is heavily reliant on a series of multimedia clips, from images to videos. Unfortunately, our audience were the first to be subject to a recently reconfigured and installed AV system. Of course there were kinks that visibly irritated Mark, but both he and the audience got through it with a degree of humour.

Trenwith’s energy means that if something doesn’t quite work, he can move very quickly onto something that does. This bombardment is very entertaining and energetic, and most of all funny. Be My Friend plays on level two of Club F4 until the 25th of April.

Mark Trenwith – Be My Friend: Melbourne International Comedy Festival

Date: 11 – 25 April

Times: Tue-Thu, Sat & Sun 19 8.30pm

Duration: 50 minutes

Venue: Club F4 
Level 2, 322 Little Collins St, Melbourne

Full $18
Concession $14
Group (6 or more) $13
Preview $12
Laugh Pack $13
Tightarse Tuesday $12

Original Post:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s