It’s a Koch Up!

Posted: June 22, 2009 in Theatre & Event Reviews and Interviews
Tags: , ,

If you, like me, suffer from a paranoid, palm-sweating fear of being called up on stage during a live performance, don’t sit in the front row of Conrad Koch’s one-man- many- puppets show at On Broadway.  It is far less strenuous laughing at other people being publicly ripped to shreds by a professional showman; unless you have a masochistic nature.   Koch who has just completed his honours in Anthropology uses the stage for a bit of philosophising and a lot of comedy.

It is peculiar that once you stick your hand up the behind of a puppet you can just about get away with murder. We are so much more forgiving of a ventriloquist unleashing a string of obscenities and politically incorrect comments from the mouth of a green monster called Ronnie who has a sex addiction.  This is precisely what Koch uses to great effect. His puppets were made by Yanni Younge and the guys from CFX.  Koch has come a long way since his first puppet, Cedric the Snake. “I went through puberty with a talking snake,” Koch realises during a conversation.  Hillary the diva puppet is an ostrich that looks like a drag queen.  She has the mind of a sailor and a laugh like a choking steam train. Hillary picks on audience members and asks one of the elderly gents in the audience; “Did you come in your car?”  To which he replies, “No”, and she says, “Would you like to!”, and then that vulgar chortling laughter. The audience loved her.    

Does Koch have any control over his foul-mouthed little friends? “Puppets can comment on society in a way people can’t,” Says Koch. “I have spoken to Hillary about her obscenity, but she told me to f%&# off!”.
We were lucky enough to be introduced to the hottest accessory this winter; the new Julius Malema puppet, created from a sketch by cartoonist Jeremy Nel.  Expect an interesting fusion of Social Anthropology and comedy (or rather woodwork) from this latest addition.

Koch Up! runs at On Broadway until 27 June 2009

©Astrid Stark

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