Chris Parker HOW I FELT

San Francisco Bathhouse, 171 Cuba St, Wellington

11/05/2021 - 15/05/2021

NZ International Comedy Festival 2021

Production Details

Join award-winning comedian Chris Parker as he attempts the worlds’ very first Live Comedy Felting Show, and possibly his nichest show to date. Watch in awe as he seamlessly delivers his iconic camp humour all while completing an entire $3 felting kit from Daiso Japan – who doesn’t love a gimmick?

If you followed Chris’s felting journeys on Instagram during lockdown, this is the show for you. If you didn’t this still is the show for you.

“A non-negotiable must-see” –
★★★★★ – NZ Herald

Winner – Fred Award for Best NZ Show 2018, NZICF
Winner – Best Newcomer 2015, NZICF
The Herald’s Top Five Entertainment Heroes of 2020

San Fran, 171 Cuba Street, Wellington
11-15 May 2021
Full Price:  $28
Concession:  $25
Cheap Wednesday:  $25
Group 6+:  $25
*service fee may apply

No wheelchair access
Occasional bad language
R18 venue, unless with their parent or legal guardian. Strictly enforced.

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Theatre , Stand-up comedy ,

1 hr

Destined to be a National Treasure

Review by Bryce Pedersen 16th May 2021

Mr Parker’s show opens by declaring itself post-Covid. Lockdowns are over and so what new skills are you taking forward into the new normal? Mr Parker emerges from Alert Level 4 with a reinvigorated Instagram following, due to his new quarantine skills of creating boiled wool figures and sewing them on hats.  He attracts the attention of two museums, keen for cultural relevance in documenting the pandemic. And this show is about How He Felt.

Mr Parker, as a comedy writer, is both delightfully pointless and absolutely necessary. As a performer, he is perfectly in command of his script, his improvisation and his multi-media presentation. He wants us to feel his sense of fun and his charm.

Mr Chris Parker sees his new show as somewhat transitional, moving from niche cultural reference and into National Treasure. He is right to command such a place, and we look forward to him being on the new $200 note. But the way he sees himself is not how the audience experiences him.

What we see and hear is much darker. On the large screen, behind him, we see his hand-held needles and the felting wool he is pricking relentlessly, crafting furiously, while he talks of childhood trauma and bullying. He is basically making the audience watch him stab a figurine, hundreds of times, while he talks about his difficult family relationships and being a gay child. It’s very funny but it’s also full of violence and shame. If the ‘Mrs Bates’ in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho used crochet hooks instead of knives, Mr Parker would be her.

If TVNZ ever revived Play School, Mr Parker would be an ideal host. Sweet and smiley for the kids, promoting the virtues of crafting hobbies, while being borderline inappropriate, winking from behind the screen for the career executives on maternity leave and the gay dads all stuck at home, waiting for his daily episode to kickstart Gin o’clock.

Mr Parker wants to be all comfy and ditzy, and an audience favourite. Of course, he is. But despite his best efforts, and these efforts are very, very good, he comes across as altogether much more wicked, damaged and surreal. It is for these qualities, and everything else weird and wonderful about him, that he will indeed become a National Treasure.


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