Fringe Bar , Your FAV - Kelburn Park, Wellington

24/02/2016 - 26/02/2016

NZ Fringe Festival 2016 [reviewing supported by WCC]

Production Details


Please come to my party? There will be music and dancing. It will be really cool.

Jacob hates attending parties, they are uncomfortable and awkward and everybody is looking at him. J-Cobz Party seeks to question social norms and etiquette surrounding partying and social events. Part-improvised part-choreographed, J-Cobz Party is an hour long music video to the soundtrack of our youth. Jacob takes his feelings of social anxiety, holds a mirror to them and laughs in their faces.

In 2015 Jacob has danced his way into the hearts of Wellington (“…Brown, in particular, needs to have his own dance-based show. He nearly stole the show.” Review of Stutterpop, Matt Loveranes, Art Murmers) and now he’s ready to give himself all to you this New Zealand Fringe Festival 2016! For three days only, you’d be a fool to miss this exclusive event.

I am Jacob Brown, let’s bring the house down.

GENRE: Physical Theatre, Comedy, Dance
VENUE: Fringe Bar Your FAV – Kelburn Park 
Full: $18.00

Physical , Dance , Comedy ,

60 mins (lunchtime show 30 mins)

Seamless transitions between dual personas

Review by Ashleigh Pope 25th Feb 2016

Actor Jakob Brown sets up his character, Jakob, as a socially awkward man in his early 20s reminiscing on memories of failed party hosting attempts. He casts his mind back, dictating his thoughts on the subject of his parties. He holds our attention by discussing every memory with specific pop-culture references from Pokeballs to beyblades.

He also validates our anxieties, as he explains his own realisation that it is ok to not want to go to the cool kid party by deconstructing how ridiculous fistbumping to Skrillex really is.

Brown is able to seamlessly transition between nostalgic dance numbers and his party-host banter. These two personas are in stark contrast to each other and switch as each new track is played between the more dialogue-heavy sections. This makes for a balanced and varied performance.

His dance persona is reminiscent of YouTube star Miranda Sings as he remains completely self-aware of the self-indulgent nature of his exaggerated hip thrusting, prancing and physical audience interactions. His commitment and conviction keeps us engaged and rooting for him all the same.  

Brown’s ‘party-host banter’ persona is set up toward the back of the stage, close to the wings for easy escape when having to face his guests when ‘entertaining banter’ all gets too much. He relies on a script for his party banter, selling his character as socially awkward and anxious as he fumbles over the words, losing his place on many occasions. His anxieties are further developed through his stiff limbs and purposeful minimal use of gesture as he shifts his weight from leg to leg for nervous effect. 

Jakob rewards us constantly with praise, compliments and actual snacks – whether it be for listening to him reveal something sad about his past, participating in his activity, or dancing with him to his poppy tracks. This goes so much further than setting up a trusting relationship between actor and audience – we genuinely want to be there, listen to him and be that shoulder for him to cry on, not just show up for the free drinks.  

While Jakob hints at how he has developed his social skills since his lonely birthdays, I don’t think I’m alone in finding his character to be adorable. If he was anything like his present character back in the day, and I was his friend, I would have gone to all his parties.  


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