Comedy fest review: Tessa Waters in Over Promises

by Lord Sutch

What an utter fucking delight. Such a joyous wonderful, feel-good, bizarre funny show. This is a show I’ve been struggling to think of how to review. Because to reveal too much would be to spoil it. This is a show where Tessa builds a whole universe and invites us in. And we all do go in because she’s just that good.

This is a show that I got dragged on stage to be a hula hoop.

This is a show where you end on your feet. This is just one comedian’s brilliantly odd world that she wants to share with you and we are all the better for it.

She dances, she jigs, she moves her body in strange ways, she wrings laughter out of just a shuffle of her knee or a wink. Many winks. There’s mime. It’s got one of the best fight scenes I’ve ever seen on the stage at BATS. It has drama. It has dark places. It’s just a wonderful show that if you walked out of without a smile on your face then you should die in a fire.

Tessa is a carnie, she admits that, and she has a full array of carnie skills to show us. But it feels like we only saw a tiny slither of what she’s capable of. There’s no narrative thread. There’s no coherence. There are bits, some a long bits, some are much shorter, some have babies, some don’t. There’s music. It’s just a treat. If you could bottle the infectious joy from this show and share it with everyone there would be world peace, and harmony, and just happiness. Because this show is happiness.

That’s all I’m going to say about that. Go and see this show. It’s brilliant.

Tessa Waters in Over Promises

Wellington, BATS Theatre, May 10-13, 9.30pm

Full Price $25
Concession $18
Group 6+ $17
Cheap Wednesday $17
*service fee may apply



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