After winning several awards for her debut show, I Hope My Keyboard Doesn’t Break, and appearing on television twice, musical comedy newcomer Gabbi Bolt isn’t sure what she has left to say.
She starts out with “Nothing”, a ode to a list of things she won’t talk about – partly because she doesn’t know what she’d say about them, she’s tired of politics and at lot of subjects have been done to death. She also acknowledges that, as a white woman, there is a privilege to switching off. Which leads to “Anxiety”.
If Gabbi was worried about notorious second-album syndrome, this one-two punch of an introduction means we get to know her quickly and we’re already in safe hands. If she has anxiety about what to sing about next, it doesn’t show. It’s a confident show throughout; even if it feels like there’s nothing new to say about working in retail, her song about it is hilarious.
There are some transitions that don’t quite work, but she acknowledges it and we’re already on her side anyway, so we go with it. And then sometimes the show is interrupted by an hilarious jingle to remind Gabbi to stay hydrated – which is good for us all, but even better for a comedian who is up on stage singing about selling feet pics for cash and her deep love for the last non-problematic celebrity man, Andrew Garfield.
Gabbi Bolt might call herself an “odd sock” but the show itself captures some truisms about people in their 20s – even if the TikTok references left me feeling mighty old.
Gabbi’s songs are very clever, very funny and there’s even a heartfelt ballad in there that proves she’s not only a musical comedian but a very accomplished musician as well.
I hadn’t heard of Gabbi before stumbling across this show. Now I’ll be keeping an eye out for what she does next. Smart, funny and a little bit odd – the perfect mix for finding humour in the strangest of places.
- Keith Gow, Theatre First
Gabbi Bolt: Odd Sock is on at the Butterfly Club as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival all month until April 23rd.