Cool Jazz and fiery Seaton Reply

Seaton Kay-Smith and Jazz Twemlow. Picture: Sydney Fringe Festival

by Fraser Tye

The first of four performances by Seaton Kay-Smith and Jazz Twemlow during the Sydney Fringe Festival took place at Marrickville’s Factory Theatre.

For the record, Jazz says it’s not his real name. “It came about as a result of my Scottish mum abbreviating my name to Jas (it’s actually James), which, when living in Japan, became Jazz, and it just stuck.”

Although grouped together on the one bill, Seaton and Jazz performed separately for 30 minutes each. For many of the comedy acts, this is a longer than usual set and step up from what they’re used to.

“There’s a load of us graduating from smaller rooms and sets to a huge stage,” Jazz said. For a “ laid-back, political and occasionally angry” performer like Jazz, this gives him more time to deliver his message.

Seaton Kay-Smith and Jazz Twemlow. Picture: Sydney Fringe Festival

Jazz, 29, started comedy in 2003 performing on both London and Manchester. In 2009, he opened a comedy club in Japan before deciding to move on to Sydney in April last year.

For Jazz, the show fits nicely into his life plan. “My plan has always been to have done at least one solo show before 30.”

Four years his junior, Seaton’s comedy cannot be described as laid-back. Clad in an outfit he described as “ suitably regal”, Seaton rattled off exactly 95 innuendos in his performance. He says his favourite one is, “When I drink, I take on the qualities of oil. If I have two drinks, I’m highly refined. Another four, I can be crude. Twenty drinks and I start killing marine life.”

Interspersed with rapid-fire punch lines were a few morose and ironic tales told in the form of a children’s book. There was also a voice-over section which neatly split his act into two halves. During this section the audience was exposed to clever internal dialogue, serving as a gateway into his character’s psychotic thoughts.

Oh, and he also ate two jalepenos, three green chillis and three birdseye chillis (they’re the small red ones) and a smattering of dried chilli flakes.

Seaton and Jazz praise the significance of Sydney’s Fringe Festival in terms of developing their relatively early careers. They both look forward to performing at Adelaide’s Fringe Festival early next year.

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