Sweaty Pits PITY PARTY!

Fringe Bar, 26-32 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington

12/03/2019 - 16/03/2019

NZ Fringe Festival 2019

Production Details

Two friends decide to follow their dream of creating a sketch show that encapsulates their messages of equality, frustration, and love… while still being incredibly silly. But among the several costume changes, the squirting citrus, the ’80s aerobics, and the magic mike strip routines…they realise their dream might be a little out of reach.

It’s comedy, it’s burlesque, it’s slap stick, it’s heartfelt…it’s harder than they thought. A sketch show for those who question what they are doing with their lives and then do it anyway.

Sweaty Pits’ PITY PARTY was nominated for “Best Comedy” at the 2018 Melbourne Fringe Festival and won the “New Zealand Tour Ready Award” at the 2018 Sydney Fringe Festival. They have sold out shows and performed at arts festivals across Australia such as; Floriade Fringe Festival, YOU ARE HERE, Art Not Apart, Sydney Fringe Festival, and Melbourne Fringe Festival.

Sweaty Pits is made up of Frankie McNair and Miriam Slater. Their writing is a cocktail of serious social issues and absurd comedy, tackling the issues they hold dear to their hearts with a positive and energetic energy, leaving the audience with a belly full of laughs as well as a message.

The Fringe Bar, 26-32 Allen Street, Wellington
Tuesday 12 – Saturday 16 March 2019
General Admission $22.00
Concession $18.00
Fringe Addict $16.00

Theatre , Comedy , Burlesque ,

1 hr

Vibrant comedy with heart

Review by Jenny Nimon 13th Mar 2019

Award winning show Pity Party! By Australian comic duo Sweaty Pits (Frankie McNair and Miriam Slater), is a fun piece of sketch centred theatre that focuses on issues surrounding society’s gender bias. It is brave, bizarre and wildly entertaining. 

The pair parodies a number of stereotypes, questioning what it means to be a ‘MILF’ and playing the patriarchy by removing their makeup and dressing up as 1980s white men and bogan teenage boys.

As far as scenography goes, the show’s sound design must be commended. Doing away with traditional transitions, the sketches are separated by sponsored ‘Spotify adverts’, claiming to give the audience “the next ten minutes of comedy ad free”, based on the gag that Miriam Slater had forgotten to upgrade to Spotify Premium for the show. Sound Technician, George Fenn, is involved in the show to add to the sense of metatheatricality (more on this in a moment), and plays off the duo well with some entertaining back and forth.

The Sweaty Pits duo does well with audience interaction, moving through the Fringe Bar seating, firing silly string, dancing for individual viewers and more. They do push the boundaries a little here, going as far as doing things like drinking an audience member’s water, which receives mixed responses from the audience, some greeting it with laughs and others with mild apprehension. 

The strength of Pity Party! comes from its self-awareness. McNair and Slater are reflective on the quality of their work throughout. While centred around a feminist core, the duo are not shy in acknowledging that their sketches are absurd and lowbrow. They describe their work as “dumb”, posing the thought-provoking question of whether silly theatre can still be ‘good’ theatre. Unfortunately, it feels as though the feminist theme gives way to this new idea, rather than making room for it on the stage. I would have liked to see the focus on equality brought back to the forefront alongside this question, rather than being left behind in the first two thirds of the show.

This aside, Pity Party! is comedy with heart, and is a vibrant way to spend your evening. 


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