By: Maddy and Marina Bye: with Sami Abu Wardeh
Starting off stage as two pushy American tourists eager for the play to start and commenting on their Brighton Fringe experience, in a shouty way, Siblings establish their credentials quickly as delightful and buffooning clowns, even before the sketch comedy officially begins.
Continuing as the brash American characters, the sisters engage the stage cleaner (played by Sami Abu Wardeh) in conversation about drinking bleach and confuse him with esteemed Shakespearean actor Mark Rylance and suddenly, In a tempo change, the comedy switches into dance, to mark the opening of the fun. All three performers are captivating physical comedians and the synchronised movement produces shrieks of laughter from the gathering.
As the night unfolds we are introduced to a series of grotesque and dark comedy characters that all hit the mark, being both hilarious and peculiar, in equal measure. These include the young boys of “Winch” inducting the new boys into boarding school, with Maddy playing a posh teen boy who thinks he’s a “player”, with Marina being his more sensitive friend.
Breaking into song the performers explore the sexually charged, closeted, world of soccer dads. A further highlight includes a very funny parody of a Harold Pinter play, about a housewife and her insulting husband. Here there is a lovely moment where Marina makes Maddy corpse with an impromptu remark.
Siblings use the tropes exploited by all good double acts, such as bickering between each other, one member of the act wants to be taken seriously for their dramatic work and an accomplished integration of clowning physicality. The dialogue comes thick and fast and badinage between them is glorious to watch. Over all too soon, Maddy and Marina leave as their guest, Sami, takes centre stage.
Firstly playing the middle eastern cleaner character that headed up the show with the sisters, Abu Wardeh plays with the crowd as he attempts to perform covers of favourite artists suggest by the throng, just on a djembe style drum, always to the same beat. Sami is a consummate clown who cheekily prods the audience with his silliness.
Sami’s second creation is a Latin guitarist who is equally charming and intimidating, think Don Colleoni from the Godfather movies, if the Don had been a musical beach bum and not a mafia crime boss. In this section he tries to set up two single members of the audience, with little success. Sami’s performance is self assured and well received. He connects well with the crowd and no-one can take their eyes off him.
The show ends with the three performers reunited once more. It’s a fun mix of comedy talent on one stage. It would have been nice to interchange the two acts more frequently rather than have two separate halves, but that is just this reviewer’s personal preference.
A fantastic wayward mix of idiot and further idiot Siblings are ones to watch; the future of UK sketch comedy. Or, at the very least, simply two funny women pratting around making an audience thoroughly tickled by their antics. Either way the result is a joy to behold.
Reviewed on 3rd June