Reviewer: Holly Sharp
“I’m supporting myself…like my parents told me too”, declares Rob Auton. And he isn’t joking. A 20 minute ‘support act’ slot is filled by the headliner himself before he returns for a 60 minute show on water called, The Water Show.
It’s probably fair to say that Auton is an odd sort, fusing poetry with karaoke, screeching, one-liners and blank stares into the middle distance one would be forgiven for forgetting that this is a stand-up show on a Wednesday night at the Lowry and convincing themselves that they’re on a condensed, quick-stop tour through a somewhat unusual gentleman’s acid trip.
Auton is at his best when delving into his seemingly bottomless archive of off-beat one liners. His anecdotes and speculations are no less bizarre, one can only guess what’s going through the head of a man that elaborates in detail on the level of shame a fox would feel if he caught it drinking out of a puddle and the awkward conversation that would ensue thereafter.
Sadly, Auton’s kooky musings feel somewhat laboured half way into his lengthy expounding of the benefits, characteristics and uses of water. While there are highlights, “when the crowd say ‘H2O’ selecta”, it’s a world away from the spontaneity, deadpan delivery and flashes of unexpected vulnerability of his belly-laugh inducing ‘support act’. It’s clear Auton is at his funniest and most comfortable when shooting from the hip, or at least seeming to do so, and the theme he shoehorns himself into in The Water Show restricts both his natural delivery and the rib-aching laughter that he deserves.
Reviewed on 23rd March 2016