Comedy Festival 2009
May 19-23 | Reviewed by Melody Nixon

NATALIE MEDLOCK and Dan Musgrove present us with a twinkling, silly and gorgeous hour of entertainment in their one couple show A Song for the Ugly Kids. As they state in their curiously childish programme, this show is about “the things in life that are a little bit wrong” – wrong, but totally funny, that is.

There is a lot that is wrong in the series of bizarre and outlandish skits Medlock and Musgrove guide us through as they plot the landscape of their friendship and couple-dom.

Their range of wacky ‘characters’ – a gay male model of indiscriminate origin/accent (but still somehow culturally offensive); a pair of ‘nuts’ psychics; Bob the Pedophile; Charlie the tormented children’s storyteller; the list is much longer and more absurd than that – act as mediums for the central characters, “Dan” and “Nat,” to explore their own inner silliness, and perhaps more seriously the emotions of their lives together.

But the show for Ugly Kids remains gentle, and ultimately uplifting, with a kind of geek-chic moodiness that is absorbing.

Musgrove shines most when exploring those characters who have an earnest sincerity. His timing as Charlie the tormented children’s storyteller is beautiful; his big hearted goofiness as the Aussie boyfriend Jamie who fiercely loves his headless girlfriend is, well, plain touching.

Medlock brings a great dose of quirkiness to the geek-chic mix, and manages to be charming even in her role as masturbating salivating Pedophile Bob. We get a sense that it is Medlock’s daring that has pushed the boundaries of these characters from just weird into totally wrong.

In the end it is the utter silliness of A Song for the Ugly Kids that is most infectious. After the sense of “wtf?” dies off, we are left with a warm fuzzy glow that doesn’t fade – it’s the warm fuzzy that comes from seeing people doing whatever they damn well like on stage, and still managing to make it work for the audience. With the Ugly Kids this talented pair have brought us something super fun, refreshingly silly, and definitely worth a view.